On this Mother’s Day, we remember our mother.
Like a lioness with her cubs, our mom was always with her “boys.”
When I look back on some of our photos, there is mom in the middle of her four boys.
I recall one time when my mother was talking about not having any daughters without regret. Her boys were always there for her.
She did however have four daughters-in-law at one point but again always talked about her “boys.”
The eldest brother, Larry was the first at everything. The first son to work and go to college.
My parents had started working after high school and it was a big deal for Larry to head to college.
My dad knew that times were changing and without a college education one couldn’t get a good-paying job. He wanted better for us, to work with our minds rather than our brawn.
I’d often sit and watch my mom clatter away on the big silver Royal typewriter helping young Larry type up his term papers. Mom worked at the Federal Reserve years before as a secretary, and boy could she type.
Her eyes were firmly fixed on Larry’s hand-scribbled notes and then she would transform it into a beautifully typed paper.
Larry’s first job was in our local library. He loved being around books all day. It may have added to his nickname “Mr. Bookbags.”
Even today, Larry is often seen with his bookbag briefcase, which when you see him with it, you would think that he’s carrying the presidential football with the launch codes inside.
It’s always a topic that comes up at family gatherings.
Francis was the third oldest but the next to move out of the house.
He got a job in New Jersey and moved into the home of Mrs. Fisher along with two co-workers from his plant. I guess mom felt OK with that as he wasn’t totally on his own.
Francis was mom’s favorite.
Hey, I knew it even though she said that she loved us all equally and didn’t play favorites. I guess it’s because he was self-reliant at a young age and never complained.
He also didn’t mind eating liver at dinner.
Andrew is the second oldest and was next to move out — across the street.
At one point four of us were in that back room until it was just Drew and me. Funny thing was that even though we slept in the same room, we hardly saw each other.
He’d be up early and head out to work and by the time I went to bed he was already asleep.
When he finally moved out, he and my mom went to a few stores to help him make over his condo.
I got to tail along, and Mom had some great decorative tips. Drew was kind of just looking into functional stuff, whereas Mom had a bit more flair.
What turned up was a nicely decorated home that when Drew had company over there were nice chairs and a couch instead of beach chairs and fold-away tables.
Lastly, sadly Mom moved out after she had a stroke on St. Patrick’s Day.
She was just taking a ham out of the oven when she felt dizzy and my dad and I spent that evening with her at the hospital.
She recuperated for a year later in a nursing home and on her birthday, we told her that dad wasn’t going to make it.
He passed away a few days later but her boys were with her each day to pick her up and take her to see dad and hold his hand.
I guess we all had to experience that pre-wake moment where we got to tell dad things before he left us.
I started by telling something that I did about 20 years earlier and then Andrew chimed in about how the car was scratched.
Even though I was the last in the house, mom would ask me to hang drapes and move what where.
She did have several weeks when she came back home from the nursing home over the next few years, but it was a sad occasion without my dad there to cheer her up.
She did help me make Irish beef stew and told me that my dad said that mine was better than hers.
He never told me that — only that it was as good as Mom’s.
Happy Mother’s Day, Mom!