My sibs and I basically had to be projectile puking or have an arm falling off in order to stay home from school when we were kids.
Mom’s philosophy on life? Get on with it. Impatient and ready-to-go NOW, Mom was at the heel, pumping us with her rhetoric even as little kids:
Let’s go! Move it. Step it up!
My Mom DID, in fact, bake apple pies from time to time. She even had irises growing near the garage in the backyard. But it’s for sure she was not the “apron and apple pie” sort of mom that we all love to see in commercial stereotypes.
No… she was strong, independent, outspoken, bossy, and a great teacher. Unlike me, she didn’t ever seemed to be plagued with self-doubt (though I suppose she was). She was kind, but tended to be unapologetic about the kind of person she was.
This translated into her living a modern-woman sort of life. She adored my Dad, but she expected him to adore her too, just the way she was.
I know my Mom and Dad had some tough times while we were growing up… now that I am a mother, I see how much the kids can get in the way of even a solid marriage. I am thrilled every time I hear my mom say: “Your dad is so wonderful.”
This another part of her wonderful qualities: even though my Dad is more sensitive, more likely to complain about his ailments, more like to feel bummed, she observes that that is part of his true nature and loves him just the way he is.
I mean, sure, her first instinct would be to say: “Oh, c’mon, Howard. You’re fine!” But it is sure she will love him and understand him — and by extension, her kids — after all.