I can't thank Mom in person on Mother's day (can she really have been gone for more than fifteen years now? How can that be?), so I thought I'd thank her here.
Thanks, Mom, for--
•Never making me throw away my comics or quit reading them. Instead, you supported my interests and you and Dad even gave me comics-related gifts that showed how much you cared.
•Buying a copy of the "Hey Jude" single and then letting me listen to it, thus leading me to rediscover the Beatles after having quit buying their albums a few years earlier.
•Not only letting me play around on the family typewriter, but for actually teaching me the basics of touch typing. By the time I took typing in junior high school. I had already mastered the fundamentals thanks to your patient lessons.
•Letting me invite my comic book buddies over for what must have seemed like an endless stream of spend-the-night visits when I was a kid; since my bedroom was right across the hall from yours and Dad's, I'm sure that you tolerated for more late-night comic book and monster movie conversations than you ever wanted to.
•Always making me feel welcome, even when you were struggling with emphysema. I cherish every one of those moments.
•Supporting my and Dad's fascination with technology--and in fact, embracing it. I remember that you became the family Tivo expert, and you knew more trick of video-dubbing with GoVideo machines than anyone else in the family.
•Never allowing my elementary school teachers to force me to write right-handed at a time when many teachers were less than tolerant of left-handed students. I remember more than once listening to you explain to a teacher that a right-handed cursive slant wasn't natural for a left-handed person; you were indefatigable!
•Being there at my bedside the day after my heart attack, and coming to the house on the day that I was finally allowed to return home after my open-heart surgery. You were struggling with your own health problems at the time, but you were there to encourage me, comfort me, and support me.
•Decorating for every Christmas, every Halloween, every Easter, and every Fourth of July. I always recall holidays as big events, largely thanks to the work you put into making our home a festive place.
•Rallying for that final Friday night visit before you left us forever. I will always remember the rapt expression on your face as you watched the video I had prepared using our family photos, and the conversation that night will stay with me forever.
That's just ten of ten thousand and one things I would like to thank you for. Happy Mother's Day!