Have I ever told you about how I wanted to be a florist? It was a short-lived fantasy that took out my desire of wanting to become an actor thanks to being cast as the 1st little pig of the three little pigs in a school play. Yet not before the long and obnoxious eternity I spent wanting to be a cosmologist. Not to be confused with cosmetologist, which in all honesty make-up would be a much harder field for me than physics.
I digress. This all started on Mother’s Day one year. I went into our front yard in Virginia where I picked tulips, and wrapped them up in cellophane with twine, like the damn mini-Martha Pre-Ankle Bracelet Stewart, I was. I gave those flowers to my Mother and she celebrated them so much it filled me with all the glory and triumph a little 6 year old could hold. It was the first time I made something for her that didn’t involve macaroni, a glue stick, and supervision. To me and very forcefully so to those involved, this was the Sistine Chapel of flower arrangements. I was thus so proud, I decided I wanted to be a florist.
In a box at my Father’s house, there sits a photo of that very flower arrangement. Why? You know because Mom’s do that thing where they make a big deal out of little things because it makes your work seem magical. Matter of fact those flowers sat in the bay window, in the front of our home, for a good week longer than they really should have. Again, why? Mom being Mom-esq by doing everything she could to make me feel proud of myself for as long as possible.
As life would have it, we would find out I was born with the anti-green thumb and thus the florist career became a pipe dream. I’ve never forgotten how proud she made me feel in those moments though. Which I’ve come to know as one of the hardest parts of losing a Mother. That motherly celebratory pride.
At 27 I have a lot I could be proud of. Degrees, career, licenses, marriage, side business, or just the human I’ve become. I’ve always struggled with being proud of myself, I think that’s just the part of my brain that over thinks and is annoyingly a people pleaser. Yet my Mom captured these moments and turned them in a way that made me actually believe it. I’m not sure how she did it, it’s probably just a Mom thing, but she was capable of making this nitpicky girl accept what she did was worthy of being proud of.
Moms are amazing creatures like that, they understand you better than you understand yourself and they feed it with everything you need to make you the person you are. There are moments when I think back to those flowers in the window and laugh because they looked like a messy 6 year old picked them out of the ground. And yet I’m still proud of those damn flowers because a long time ago there was a Mom who knew she needed to nurture pride in a daughter who had none. Oh how I do miss having her around doing that.
So, that’s the story of me wanting to be a florist.
Happy Early Mother’s Day, Mom. I’ll never stop celebrating you like you celebrated me.