My Mom would have been 82 yesterday. She passed away in January 1999, just a few days shy of my parent’s 53rd anniversary. So in honor of her birthday, I’d like to tell you a few random things about her.
My Mom was an amazing person and one of my very best friends.
My Mom was stunning. I wanted to grow up to be an elegant Mom just like her. She looked like a movie star to me.
My Mom’s favorite perfume was Arpège by Lanvin. “Promise her anything, but give her Arpège.” She wore it every day. It was the only fragrance she ever used. When she and Dad would go out for the evening, she’d put a couple of drops on my pillowcase.
My Mom saw the world in terms of black and white. There were no shades of gray. You were wrong or you were right. She liked you or she didn't. She did not keep this information to herself. You knew where you stood. I found this trait both admirable and horrifying.
My Mom was intelligent and very knowledgeable. She always astounded me with the breadth of her knowledge. She would have made an excellent Trivial Pursuit partner.
My Mom was wise. I was born in New Jersey, but we moved to Connecticut when I was 13 months old. I don't remember New Jersey. I complained once to my Mom that I felt uncomfortable saying that I was from New Jersey, since I did not grow up there. Nor was I comfortable saying that I was from Connecticut since I was not born there. In fact, I said, I felt rootless. She told me that I was from her. I never felt rootless again.
My Mom is the reason I wear black almost exclusively. When I was twelve she told me that redheads look good in black. I was not about to disagree with her. She, however, liked to wear bright colors!
My Mom was not perfect, but she was perfect for me.
It’s hard to encapsulate someone like my Mom in a few sentences. There are so many memories that it’s difficult to pick just a few. That said I’m not sure that pages and pages would give you a real sense of my Mom. She has been described by many as “a force of nature.” Simply, my Mom loved me, and I knew it. I loved her, and she knew it. Not a day went by without a phone call or email or ten. I miss her.
So, as 2008 draws to a close, I’d like to wish you a Happy New Year and to ask all of you a favor. Please tell the people you love how much you love them. Give them a hug. Spend a little extra time together. My Mom would want you to!