As a little girl, I remember how much I loved church picnics. We would meet at the church gate in Falmouth village at about 5 am and waited for everyone to assemble to go on the annual walk-a-ton to Morris bay. We carried bag packs with our picnic items, we wore our swimsuits underneath our clothing and I was always so eager to walk with my friends so that we could talk about the fun activities we had planned. Now walking to Morris bay from Falmouth is no joke! It’s a long long walk. Approximately 9 miles and for a 10 year old, that’s a stretch. I have to make a confession here, we always begged for a ride from one of the other picnic goers at about half way into our journey. Yep, we were always so relieved.
My mother, who had three younger ones at the time, would join us later about 9 am with a small tent to pitch on the beach. Oh, life was great! The beach was filled with other members of our church, there was food, music, tents pitched and children having a great time.
I remember glancing at my mom and time froze.
For the first time, I saw my mom differently. I compared her to the other moms at the beach because I noticed something.
The other moms were well dressed and their hair well done, everything was on point and judging from their body language, I could tell they were all good friends.
I was sad for my mom because I knew why she wasn’t amongst that group. I knew it was because she didn’t fit in and I felt sad for her. I know she didn’t fit in because she was a full time mom who sometimes didn’t have the time and money to buy the necessary things to fit in for she had the responsibility of raising her four children.
She was a single mother. She was a mother that always struggled to make ends meet. She didn’t fit in because she always put her children’s need first and looking good took a back seat. She didn’t fit in because she cared more about our happiness than her own. But, in that moment, I was still sad for her ….. I realized at such a young age that she made sacrifices so that her children’s needs were met, so that her children were happy. I wondered though if she was sad too…..
In that moment I loved her more than ever before. In that moment I was thankful that she was our mother. In that moment, I thanked God for her for she has taught me the joy of motherhood.
This year she celebrated her 60th Birthday! We watched her as she enjoyed and celebrated life – life with family, life with friends, like with her children…
Thank you mummy! We all love and appreciate you!