Saturday, March 06, 2010

Oh, Mother!

About a week ago, I ran into a girl I hadn't seen in 13 years. I was buying perfume for my mother and went into a local department store. We used to work together in cosmetics at this very store, I at Estee Lauder, she at Clinique. I was surprised to see her but it was a good surprise. She's a great woman. Always smiling, always in a good mood and always letting out her great laugh. She hadn't changed a bit.

I said to her, "I heard you had a baby..." and she said, "My baby is now twelve." Oh. Well, it had been a long time, I couldn't possibly have known. She caught me up on what all the girls we used to work with were doing and who she still kept in touch with. I was telling her all about Eddie, my nephews and Mommy.

"Mommy??" she said, laughing.

"Yeah, Mommy." I always call my mother "Mommy", especially when talking to friends.

I guess a lot of people might think it's odd, since I'm forty-two, but what should I call her? "Mom" seems so sixteen-year-old boy, "Ma" so unfinished and "Mother" so uptight, formal and cold. I used to know a girl who called her mother, "Mother".

She was from the South, so I suppose that's normal down there, but every time I heard her talk of or to her mother, "Mother bought me the most fabulous couch this week." or "Mother. I told you I'd pick up Daddy this afternoon, so don't you worry." it always sounded so disconnected and like she didn't even really like her all that much. Like she was talking about a stranger. Or to a stranger. It's just weird.

Calling my mother mother, would be like calling her Helga. It doesn't fit her, it's not warm and loving and it's like calling her by a stranger's name. "Mommy" is just so loving and sweet and encompasses all that a child really feels about their mother...even when pushed to the edge of annoyance by said mother.

I will always call my mother Mommy, no matter how old I get. Besides, like my step-father says, "Mother is only half a word."

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
Eddie Adds Culture To His Day Friday
One Armed Bandit
Having A Good Reason


Bookerz said...

I hadn't thought of it in those terms, but now that you mention it. Works for me. Enjoy your postings, keep up the great work.

Evil Pixie said...

I have stages... "Mum" is the every-day stuff, "Mother" is when she's in trouble or has annoyed me beyond words, and "Mummy" is when I'm not feeling well or she's done something extra brilliant. But when I want to get her attention, I call her by her first and middle name. Mum does not like her children calling her by her first and middle name. I typically do this when I'm in stores and have lost sight of her. When I say "Mum" too many women turn and look, but when I say her first and middle name - she drops everything and comes running, just so she can scold me (like a 2-year-old) about how she is "Mum" or "Mummy" but to me and my sister, she is never Donna Mae. :)

myacrolife said...

Your step father (my "step uncle") is a genius. Mother sucks. I can't call my mom mother. Unless I say "my mother did this..." but I can't address her as that. I call her Mom. When I talk about her to my sis or dad, I refer to her as Mommy. When I talk about her to anyone else it's usually "my mom." We are not formal. Formal makes me want to barf. Plus I am so used to calling her Mommy. Its like your signature name for her :-)

Gil said...

We always referred to our parents as Mommy and Daddy. I love your stepfather's words of wisdom!

Ruth and Glen said...

Just wanted to let you know how much we enjoy the stories of your dear, sweet, and oh so funny Mommy !

Angela said...

Ya know I always called my mother "mommy" too, some people thought it was retarded but she and I were happy to be retarded together. :o) I also tend to call my father "daddy", which is what all good little girls do right? hehe

extenze said...

i call my mom "mommeh" lol