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A Nomad's Notes: She’ll be known for her selflessness

I’ve never sat and thought about this until this moment as I’m writing, but I don’t recall the first memory I have of my mother. But as I search my memory, I realize she’s just always been programmed into it somehow. All the early memories I have of her share a common thread: complete and utter selflessness.

It’s the 1997, and we’re living in Lexington, Ky. My sister and I are outside on the driveway making shadows on the outer garage door as my dad watches. We’re waiting for my mom to make the short drive from the Kroger where she works down the street to our house up on the hill. She’s basically worked a 12-hour day and is just now getting off at 9 p.m., and as her car comes up the drive my sister and I freak out and bombard her.

Now I’ve spent time with kids, and 15 seconds flat has been enough to exhaust me. But damn, if my mother didn’t show anything but sleepy excitement to see us.

Fast forward to fourth grade. I have one of the toughest teachers I’ll ever have in my life. By tough, I mean she gave us about an hour’s worth of homework for each subject each night. And there were like four of them. That’s collegiate-level, not elementary school-level amounts of homework. (Now that I’m a more educated adult I reflect back and hope parents raised hell about it. There’s a difference between challenging and churning up so much stress a student can’t focus.)

In the fourth grade, I learned I have difficulty with math (and still do). But you know who can do math well? My mom the pharmacist. She would come home every night at 9 to help me with my math homework.

Except this was a little different than it was in 1997. At this point she no longer lived in the house with us after my parents divorced in 1998. Because of this, in addition to her late work hours, my mom could’ve told me to look for a tutor and gone home to rest after her long day each night. But she never did.

Moving forward to the mid-2006, I lived with my dad and stepmom part of the time and then my mom part of the time in Danville, Ky. But I was struggling with my faith, with my voice and with who I was, so then I went to live with my mom full-time.

It’s hard to reflect on my mom and all she’s done without praising her. Without my mom I wouldn’t have had the opportunity to go to San Diego Comic Con twice. Without my mom I wouldn’t have had the opportunity to see Zachary Quinto perform in two plays and, in turn, later have a chance to be in the same room as Michelle Williams and Leonard Nimoy. Without my mom I wouldn’t have made it to Egypt in 2015.

Her selflessness and generosity go even farther. Once, when I had one of the worst kidney stone attacks I’ve ever had, she drove two-and-a-half hours to pick me up from college and take me home to our local hospital.

She even shelled out the money to buy me a plane ticket home two years ago so I could surprise my sister at her graduation party. The entire thing was her idea to begin with. Just writing these things down makes my tear ducts heavier than I’d like.

I don’t want to leave you with the impression I love my mother just for what she can do and has done for me. But I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention these moments when I write about her, because it speaks so much to her character. Neither of us are religious, but I can say my mother has more of a Christ-like heart than anyone else I know. Her generosity and acceptance of others who might not have found it otherwise is the legacy she’ll leave.

Thanks, Mom.

 

Lindsay Kriz is a staff writer for the Beacon. Reach her at 754-6890 or lkriz@brunswickbeacon.com.