Sunday, May 9, 2010

A Tribute to My Working Momma

I owe a lot of my drive and where I am today because of my parents believing in me. And a large part of the reason that I am a successful, independent Working Girl is because my mother set such a wonderful example to live by.

My mother was a writer and editor and all throughout my childhood, I had very fond memories of watching my mother work. When we were younger, my sister and I were sometimes toted along with her to work. My mom worked for Kraft Foods doing business writing (manuals, memos, etc.) and we would sit underneath her desk eating caramels that we found in the lobby of the building (and would hoard in our pockets for later), or the graphic designer my mom worked near would let us use her paper and pens to draw pictures. In her home office, my sister and I would crawl around her office while she clicked away on the computer. If she worked late into the night, her tapping was almost like a lullaby that put us to sleep.

When we got older, my mom opened her own freelance editing and writing business and worked from home. In my eyes, she was superwoman. She took care of us girls, did what she loved during the day, helped work on numerous charity events, and still had plenty of time for the family. Her passion and enthusiasm were something I always admired. and the way she was always there for me and my sister. She had it all in my eyes. And I wanted to be like her when I grew up. I still do. Having a work-life balance is something that is extremely important to me so I try to work hard, play hard, and make time for me and my family all at the same time - in short, I try to emulate my mother everyday.

My mom passed away six years ago from a malignant brain tumor. Losing her has been hands down the hardest thing I have ever had to go through and not a day goes by that I don't think about her or how much I miss her. One of the hardest parts of watching my mother struggle with her illness was watching her lose the ability to write and read. The tumor was unfortunately situated right on the part of the brain that operates those functions that were so important to her throughout her life - how she made a living and how she enjoyed each day. I was amazed by her strength to bear it and to listen to books on tape instead of reading and to still help my sister and I with our homework. Watching her lose her dream, made me realize how important dreams are and how important it is to savor every achievement.

On days like this, it is particularly hard to not have her around - the Mother's Day commercials, the card racks at pharmacies, the overwhelming number of emails about what to get your mother for this special day. But it is a day to celebrate her even though she isn't here. To celebrate all that she taught me about life, about work, about how to be me.

Today, my dad took me to brunch to celebrate my mother and all that she did for our family. And he told me that if she were here, she would be so proud of all that I have accomplished. I'm proud of me too to be where I am today.

I love you mom and I miss you. You are the best role model a girl (working or not) could ask for.

10 comments:

Rebekah said...

This is a heart-wrenching and beautiful post. I've been feeling sorry for myself all week because I had to work instead of going home to see my mom, but I at least got to talk to her. I can't imagine not having her around, and I admire you girls my age who have lost your mothers for being strong enough to celebrate them today.

Anastasia said...

Thank you for sharing that. She sounds like an incredible woman. I hope my girls see me like you see her when they are adults.

ChasingParadise said...

I adore this. Thank you for sharing. It echoes a lot of what I was feeling late last week and into the weekend.

My mom passed away 19 years ago from breast cancer. I was just a little girl. Mother's Day is so hard. But this year, while I was volunteering at the Race For The Cure, I heard a song by Melissa Etheridge ("I Run For Life") and I looked up at the bridge and all the people running and I smiled from ear to ear. I instantly remembered my mom and felt her with me. It really made my day - hell, my month!

Kelly said...

What a wonderful post. You almost made me cry!

tatum said...

thank you for sharing WG2, you made me cry. i often struggle whether being a working mom will detract from being a good mom, but your post made me realize that i can be both (someday). your mom sounds amazing, heck, i'm proud of you!! xo

Romantic Comedee said...

This was touching, beautiful and inspirational. I am sure your amazing mother is smiling from the other side at having raised such a kind, thoughtful daughter. Keep on celebrating her. It keeps her positive energy alive in the world and that is the best legacy.

Lisa said...

What a beautiful post...it made me tear up! You mom sounds like an incredibly inspiring person, and she seems to have passed on similar traits to you. Keep your head held high and remember that she is watching over you and must be so proud! :)

A New Beginning said...

Thank you for sharing this post with us. I too was feeling very sorry for myself for having to work my first mother's day, because I would be away from my almost one year old daughter. You made me realize how blessed I am to be able to go home after work and see her, and to be able to see my mom everyday.
What a wonderful way to celebrate all that she did for you both in this post, and by celebrating her life with your father on Mother's Day. You touched my heart deeply with this post. Thank you again for that.

unwritten said...

this is an amazing post. I think its really special that you made such an amazing tribute to your mom, and the way you wrote about her is so special. I too was beginning to feel sorry for myself as i do every mother's day since my mompassed away 15 years ago when i was 9, but she kept her head up through her illness right up until the end. Its important to remember her and the essence of who she was!

Erin said...

It's amazing how unfair life can be sometimes... taking away not only your mom but also her favorite thing to do before ending her life.

You're doing a fine job carrying on her writing memory though. :)