In honor of Mother’s Day I want to share a poem that came into my life many years ago and has helped hold me through the turbulence of parenting, especially in the teen years.
“I had the meanest mother in the world. While other kids had candy for breakfast, I had to eat cereal, eggs and toast. While other kids had cakes and candy for lunch, I had a sandwich. As you can guess, my dinner was different from other kids’ dinner, too.
My mother insisted on knowing where we were at all times. You would think that we were on chain gang or something. She had to know who our friends were and what we were doing.
I am ashamed to admit it, but she actually had the nerve to break the child labor law. She had us work. We had to wash dishes, make the beds and learn how to cook. That woman must have stayed awake at night thinking up things for us to do.
By the time we were teenagers, she was much wiser and our life became more unbearable. None of this tooting the car horn for us to come running; she embarrassed us to no end by insisting that friends come to the door to get us.
I forgot to mention that most of our friends were allowed to date at the mature age of 12 or 13, but our old-fashioned mother refused to let us date until we were 15. She really raised a bunch of squares. None of us were ever arrested for shoplifting or busted for dope. And whom do we have this to think for this? You’re right, our mean mother.
I am trying to raise my children to stand a little bit straighter and walk taller. I am secretly tickled pink when they call me mean. I thank God for giving me the meanest mother in the world. Our country doesn’t need a good five cent cigar. It needs more mothers like mine. Blessings on that wonderful woman.”