I’m not sure what my mom dreamed I would one day turn out to be while she was pregnant with me. Maybe she dreamed I would do ballet, and join the choir, or play an instrument. Maybe as I got older I would become a math genius, or maybe even follow in her path and become an artist? I’m sure of one thing though, she probably never imagined that at the age of 14, I would suffer from a Traumatic Brain Injury that would end up altering the rest of my decisions in life.
What I can also guarantee is that she probably never imagined she would raise a daughter that would grow up to be an adrenaline junkie, would despise the color pink, own a wardrobe that consists of only black, navy blue and army green. A daughter that has the mouth of a sailor and has to bite her tongue because she grew up around the firefighters and well she just can’t help it. A daughter that dreams of flying in helicopters, and fighting fires. A daughter that is too stubborn to consider her own feelings, but let it be someone else’s and she’s there. A daughter that can listen to you explain how to do something over, and over again, but until you put it in front of her and let her do it she just won’t understand. A daughter that talks way too much about just about anything, and even though she knows it, she still can’t keep her mouth shut. A daughter who’s mind runs a thousand miles a minute, and is always ten steps ahead of herself. A daughter who can’t say no, and somehow ends up with 10,000 projects on her plate. A daughter who can’t remember the name of the person she met yesterday, but can tell you in detail the most valued theory of the changes that occur inside a serial killers brain. A daughter who finds interest in the absolute strangest things, has an abnormally large collection of autobiographies and non-fiction books on a plethora of medical related things, and still somehow can never find time to read. A daughter that could survive on Indian food if her life depended on it. A daughter that………..
I don’t know what she dreamed I would turn out to be but I sure do hope I’ve made her proud somewhere in between all of that craziness. Usually when people meet my mom they start off by something like “bless your soul”, or “you poor thing”, and boy are they right. This woman deserves a medal because from day one I’ve caused chaos. If it wasn’t the day I informed the nun at the preschool introductions that the easter bunny brought my dad a really big beer, or the call from the school nurse that I had managed to get a tick stuck on the back of my neck and she would need to come pick me up from school to deal with it, only for the tick to eventually get lost in her car, then it had to have been the day I fell ten feet head first.
After my accident I gained an entire new perspective on motherhood. After seeing my mom spend so many countless nights on a tiny couch or chair in my hospital room I realized what the meaning of true love is. Nobody wishes for their child to be sick, in general, but to live 14 years healthy, and then to have such a tragic accident occur, well this woman she handled it with grace. I found my mom and I discussing the other day how a patients mom reacted, and my mom reminded me that she probably used to be like that.
My mom quite basically went to war with the medial system for me. She didn’t give up on me when so many other doctors did. She spent nights researching, and piecing things together. She drove me five hours away from home in search of someone that could possibly provide the answers. And five years later she still drives me five hours there and back twice a year.
When I explain to people that my mom is my best friend they kind of laugh and say “oh that’s cool”, or “me too!”. But what they don’t realize is that for five years my mom was my only constant in my life (along with my sister and dad, whom I also owe the world to). She was always there, and when I say always I mean the woman dressed me, and helped me bathe as a teenager. She helped me to grow and be the young woman I was 5 years ago, and then after my accident happened she helped pick up all of those pieces, and helped put them back together.
She listened to me cry when I told her I couldn’t take it any longer, and told me that she knew who I was, and that giving up wasn’t an option. She instilled the courage, and the drive. The determination to be more, to love more, to provide more, to listen more, to stop and smell the roses more, that was all her.
My mom is not only my mother, and my best friend, but she is also my hero. She is the woman I owe everything I have become, and am to.
I hope that somewhere underneath all of the 10,000 tiny heart attacks I have probably caused her in my lifetime, there is a tiny bit of pride that I am hers.
I am probably not the woman she dreamed I would grow up to be, but I can only hope that who I have become is a woman she is proud to have carried through life.
My sweet momma,
All of my Love.