Thursday, February 03, 2005

My Mom, The Tall Poppy

One of my favorite, dearest blog friend, Pink Poppy, is going out of town to see her best friend get hitched, (see how I'm throwing the southern references in there Poppster?) and she asked for people to send in a few essays on different subjects on Tall Poppy's and the ever loathesome weeds.

I was supposed to post mine on Thursday, but it is up on her blog now, so here ya go! My story of how my Mom taught me to deal with the weeds of life:

Growing up, people always associated my Mom with some celebrity.
"Your Mom looks like Marilyn Monroe!" or "Your Mom looks like Farrah
Fawcett!" were common phrases heard around the block. I know, Marilyn
and Farrah look absolutely nothing like each other, but she was so
beautiful people felt a need to compare her to a celebrity I guess.

She also had a very successful career while raising three kids. I
supposed my Dad was more progressive then most men at the time, and he
helped out with our rearing as much as she did. We never really had
babysitters, as my Dad would get us off to school, and my Mom would
get home as our bus was pulling up.

Class, style, beauty, and compassion are just some of the words I
would use to describe my Mom. She also has a wicked sense of humor,
and is loved by most everyone she meets, except for the weeds, of

Back then, in my small Indiana hometown, most women were still
housewives. An awful lot of them were pretty dated, and they hadn't
much bothered updating their look from the day they had gotten
married. My Mom floated into school plays and sporting events like an
angel from heaven. She didn't look like any of the other Moms.

One year she volunteered to be the field trip Mom. All the kids in my
3rd grade class begged to go with her. The other three Moms that
volunteered also were not amused by this, not one bit. The children
chosen to go with my Mom cheered, while the other kids voiced their
disaproval with a resounding "Awwww!" when they found out the had to
go with one of the other Moms.

On the bus ride home, I learned what a real weed was. A couple of my
friends had to go with the other Moms, and they were a bit upset when
they got back to the bus. We sat in the back of the bus, with all the
Moms in the front.

When I asked what was wrong, they told me the other Moms had been
talking about my Mom. "What did they say?" I asked. It ranged from
how my brother, sister, and I must be neglected, to my Mom looked like
a tramp. They said these things in front of the other kids, FFS!

My Mother, the classy southern woman that she is, has never looked
like a tramp a day in her life. I wasn't exactly sure what that meant
at the time, but I knew it was bad. Real bad.

This is when my Father's Loyalty DNA kicked in and I marched my butt
up to the front of the bus. My Mom saw my face, as did the other
women who were currently being sweet as pie to the woman that
neglected her kids and looked like a tramp.

"What's wrong Dahhling?" my Mom asked as she pulled me up on her lap.
"They are bad women. They said bad things about you to the other

Dead silence. The whole bus.

"Sweetheart, go back and sit down. Everything is just fine. I'm sure
it is all a misunderstanding that will be cleared up later. Now

I could tell by her eyes that everything was not just fine, and she
was mad as hell. Nothing, but nothing was worse then making this
woman angry.

Now that I'm an adult, I can realize how horrid the rest of the bus
ride must have been for my Mom, and for the weeds. Thankfully we were
just a couple of minutes from home when this all happened.

On the car ride home, I sat in silence. "What's the matter, you?" my
Mom asked. "Why didn't you yell at them? Why didn't you say

"Did you like it when other kids said bad things about me?" she asked.
I shook my head no. "Then don't you think the children of those
women would have been embarrassed if I said something bad about their
Moms?" I said she was right.

"Besides, jealous people are not worth your breath or your energy.
They won't listen to what you have to say, and they will just have
something else to talk about if you lose your cool. Remember that."

And so I have. Over the years, even to this day, I have heard bits
and pieces of little snide remarks and passive aggressive comments
directed towards my Mom. Instead of infuriating me, it almost makes
me smile, knowing my Mom must be real special to have so many that are
so jealous of her.

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