My mother wasn’t really the napkin mom. She probably gave me notes here and there, I don’t remember. But she did give me many things I hold dear.
I am an artist because of her. It was her father who taught me to draw. It was she, more than my father, who loved that I was an artist. My father liked it, but my mother loved it.
My mother gave me love of gardening. She was always piddling around growing potted plants. I gave her a small plant once, she grew it into a large tree in her staircase alcove. She named it after me. I always liked that. I grew one just like it for many, many years in our home as well. It was well over 8 feet tall by the time we moved and had to leave it behind.
My sister got the bug even worse than I did. She has a garden that would make my mother proud. For the most part I have houseplants my mother would say need watering.
She gave me love of baseball. I grew up watching the LA Dodgers in the era of Sandy Koufax, Don Drysdale and Maury Wills. She was a stickler for always staying until the last out, no matter the score. She could NOT abide seeing that famous trail of rear lights leaving Chaves Ravine in the 6 or 7th inning.
She gave me a love of family. This is a picture of her being surprised by me coming home from college one year. Everyone knew I was coming home for the Holidays but her. She went berzerk with joy when I walked in the door. I always loved that moment, always felt loved in the best way. Brings tears to my eyes thinking about it.
She gave me a love of letting go. She let things go easily. Not everything, and not always. But she learned as she grew older to, as she, said ‘Let go, let God’. She understood what she could control and what she couldn’t and she was at peace with that. It was probably the most important example she showed me.
She passed away in 1988, a long time ago. I remember her with love today.