One Flamingo Short of Tacky

I stand before the rack of glossy, flowery, sentimental cards and realize why my three offspring do not buy me Mother’s Day cards.

By Pam Kukla

For the DC Herald

You see, I am a mother not made for Hallmark or American Greetings. You see I am not the perfect mother, I have failed at times.

For example, there isn’t a card for your first born to buy that says, “Thanks for using me as guinea pig on how to do it right with my siblings. My therapist says I will someday recover.” Or “Thanks for crushing my dreams and imagination by explaining the origin of the red suited big guy in the middle of Walmart.” Yea, the beginning of my mom fails. Don’t bring up the time spent in the corner on the little red chair or everyone chimes in!

My mom fails didn’t just stop with my first born, oh no, I continued my mom fails with the middle born too. His card might read, “Thanks for coming back to get me after you left me at the vacation rental house on your way to Disney World. Separation anxiety is a character trait I’m sure. ” Or “Thanks for sitting in the minivan and laughing while I was being chased by the goose. Learning to run away from enraged animals helped my bull riding.”

Mom fails continued with the last born. With her I was just determined to scare her to death for some reason.  Her card would read, “Thanks so much for sharing your love of Alfred Hitchcock movies with me at a tender young age. Someday I might take showers again.” Or “Thanks so much for your creative use of invisible fishing line and your ability to recreate scary movie scenes just after I watched Paranormal Activities. Someday I might be able to sleep with the lights off.”

My mom fails could go on and on and on. I really don’t deserve those flowery, sentimental and glittery cards. What I do deserve and get which is so much more precious are the memories from those three offspring of mine.

For example when the first born took me to a piece of cow pie studded corn stubble and says, “Maw this is where I am going to build my house.” He is beaming with pride and I see the man he has become despite the time spent in the corner on the little red chair. It is also the time I watch my middle born head out for snowmobiling at 5 am and before he leaves I get a rare two armed hug and a good bye. I realize beneath that college boy, adrenaline junky exterior is my tow haired little boy. It is when I am sitting at home contemplating our soon to be empty nest and the last born sends me a text saying thanks for raising her the way I did. That small message sent while on another one of her trips reminds me even though she is out of sight; I am still on her mind.

So I have a few (hundred) mom fails and no Hallmark flowery cards, but my precious little memories are better than all the cards in the store!

Happy Mother’s Day!


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