A Buffet of Mother’s Day Memories

hoffman-estates-jewel-2     This isn’t my mom, but it could be. Taken at the Jewel Grocery Store in Hoffman Estates, Illinois where I grew up, this is where my mom shopped every  Friday night after my dad brought home his paycheck. This is before debit  and credit cards filled everyone’s wallets, so she had to wait until my dad cashed his weekly pay check in order to buy groceries. My mom wore dresses to the grocery store and makeup as did most the women who pushed around a grocery cart at Jewel in the 1960s. (Now there are times  I go to the grocery store where I look as if I just posed for a mug shot. Who has time for lipstick and a comb, pantyhose, when all I am buying is detergent and dog food? I’d go in my pajamas if I could, and I have seen people in pajamas at Walmart shopping. My mom would likely be appalled.)

I don’t like to grocery shop, it’s just a boring chore to me, but as a little girl I loved going each week with my mom to Jewel with it’s shiny polished floors, and colorful boxes of food and fresh-looking vegetables. Seeing this photo from the historic archives of an Illinois library, made me remember those Friday night grocery store outings and, of course, made me miss my mom. Especially so with Mother’s Day right around the corner.

mom givng me a bathI’m keeping this photo small as it is myself  bathing in the nude. The only naked photo that will ever be seen of myself on my blog. (I want to keep my readers). Somehow bathing me in a plastic dish bucket on our kitchen counter doesn’t seem safe. Poor mothers. No matter how hard they try, they still get blamed for imperfections. I survived the bath, as well as any other missteps by my mother who, like most mothers, did the best she could. 

We all are so different, but we all had mothers. I’ve seen even the toughest guy soften when speaking about his mom. So often writers write about his or her mother and it’s obvious no matter how old we get our mothers  remain with us, in our hearts and minds, for good or for bad.  I have often wrote about my mother. I will miss her this Mother’s Day just as I have missed her every Mother’s Day since she died forty two years ago. Yikes! It never gets easier, but for me remembering my mom in my writing somehow eases the great loss, just a little.

mom and grandmaOur moms had moms, and this is my mother in front of my grandma’s house in Chicago. Every Mother’s Day,  our family took my grandma out to eat. This Sunday there is a fancy buffet at the hotel where I work. People will spend a lot of money  to eat, even drink champagne and hope that they made their mom feel appreciated. It’s one of the busiest days in the resturant industry. So much has changed in our world, but not wanting mom to have to go to the grocery store and cook, remains the same. And the resturant industry is grateful. Servers groan about that day because it is hectic, but it’s also lucrative. For the past four decades, I’ve wished my mom was alive so I could take her to a busy, over-priced resturant and make her feel special. 

   I hope my words travel upward and reach the angels and that my mom can hear me wish her a Happy Mother’s Day! And I wish the same to all mother’s, and I hope you all feel special on Sunday and that you are loved.

My mom.








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