At ground level

A column about LIFE

A tribute to my mom

Mom in her youth

I wrote a column similar to the one I’m writing now as a tribute to my mom 10 years ago. There’s not much I can add to it, other than the fact that my mother, Anita Meily, is now 84 years old, and she continues to amaze me!

I tease Mom that her social life is busier than mine. Sometimes, she is so busy she doesn’t even have time to talk to me on the phone. “I can’t talk long, I’ve got to go somewhere pretty soon,” she has told me more than once when I would call. I am so glad she continues to live a full life. She is a model of wisdom, strength and fortitude.

When Dad died suddenly 18 years ago, Mom was devastated and didn’t want to continue living. Dad and Mom were an inseparable couple. Their marriage had reached a level few couples ever attain. Eventually, she picked up the pieces and moved forward, with courage, grace, and lots of prayers. She continued their work of counseling engaged and married couples and teens, and giving talks to schools and organizations. With much encouragement from us, she continued writing their weekly column in the Panorama, a Sunday magazine in the Philippines, changing the column’s name from “Husband and Wife Speak,” to “And Life Goes On.”

One time she told me, “When your dad died, I felt like a baby learning to walk again. It was hard to act independently about matters which I had always dealt jointly with your dad.”

I can’t imagine Mom being “helpless.” Mom has always been the rock of our family. When Mom was sick, a certain sadness engulfed our home. Things just didn’t seem right when Mom didn’t feel well.

Mom and I didn’t always get along. In fact, during my teen-age years, we were constantly at odds with each other. Once married, our relationship grew. Being a wife and a mother, I often experienced what she had experienced and felt what she felt.

When I think of Mom, the many sweet childhood memories come to mind – the weekend family outings, the birthday parties, the serious talks, and even the stern warnings. Mom always appeased a visit to the dentist with a trip to a coffee shop for my favorite chicken pie and a Coke afterward. She taught me to make pancakes from scratch, leche flan, chocolate cake, corn soup, beef tenderloin, shrimp creole and her other signature pastries and dishes.

I cried for Mom on the first day of nursery school and I cried with Mom when Dad passed away. I remember her stern look whenever I did something wrong, but I will always cherish the time I was so touched when, instead of scolding me, she gently asked me if I wanted a cup of coffee when I had my first hangover. She knew when to pull the reins and when to let go…

There was a time she held my hand and that of my siblings as we walked through the marketplace. These days, we hold her hand and lead her around the mall. There was a time she brought us treats from the grocery store. These days, we bring her sweets and treat her out to dinner. There was a time when she would dress us up in our party dresses. These days, we buy her dresses she likes.

Her words of advice continue to ring in my ears after all these years. In my teen-age years: If he really loves you he will call. Always keep a conversation going, even if you have to talk about the weather. Don’t come home too late. Be true to yourself. When I lived in the Midwest and became a wife and a mother: Stay warm. Your husband comes first before us. Enjoy your kids; they won’t be kids for long. You can always regain your career, but you can never regain your children’s early years. And always: Don’t work too hard. Be sure to get enough rest. Take care of yourself. Pray, pray, pray.

Words seem inadequate to thank Mom for all she has done – for giving me the skills to fight my battles; for applauding my efforts and supporting each of my zany ventures; for being my guide. She has taught me to live life and to take failure in stride, to continue to have faith amid heartache and desperation. I hope I have been able to be as good a mother to my children as my mom has been to me.

I look forward to more outings and quiet talks with Mom. I look forward to growing old and wise like her. I love you, Mom!

Mom with her six children

My mommy today

May 8, 2011 - Posted by | Uncategorized | , ,

1 Comment »

  1. […] post by rosemeily This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. ← Ed Hardy clothing, the […]

    Pingback by A tribute to my mom | Kids say : | May 9, 2011 | Reply

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: