THINGS MY MOMMA TAUGHT ME

  1. My mom always hated to drive and we never had a car, so we'd walk everywhere. she was in school, studying architecture, so as we walked she'd tell me the styles of all the houses we passed: bungalow, queen anne, craftsman.
    I still go over the list in my head when I pass through a neighborhood.
  2. In the summer, we'd walk to the movie theater to get out of the heat for a while. we'd watch anything. sometimes a double feature. I remember watching john waters' hairspray from the front row.
    I learned to love movies, especially weird movies, from her completely equal opportunity approach to hanging out in a cool dark room and watching whatever interesting thing might play on the screen.
  3. My childhood was full of simon and garfunkel and the beatles, the talking heads, the cars, the clash, madonna, billy idol, cyndi lauper, john cougar mellencamp and bruce springsteen. there was a Born in the U.S.A. poster of Bruce's butt on the back of our closet door. She'd sing me to sleep with Rocky Raccoon.
    it was a good soundtrack to grow up to.
  4. It was the 80s. my mom wore bedazzled jean jackets, black lace, bangles and rhinestones, red lipstick and clubmaster sunglasses.
    I still think this look is the ultimate in cool.
  5. When she got home from classes late, my mom would bring me a colored pencil, those fancy art ones from the bookstore at the student union. A different color each night. I remember smelling them, that peppery wood smell, and slowly expanding the collection into a full rainbow.
    art supplies = love
  6. My mom made most of my clothes. I had lots of calico dresses. she also made my Halloween costumes: Dorothy Gale, Snow White, a unicorn with a horn that wouldn't quite stay upright.
    they were magnificent.
  7. I had lots of anxiety as a kid. I'd cry at school almost everyday. My mom gave me a necklace with a dove pendant on it, and in the morning she'd kiss it three times and tell me those kisses had to last all day, so I needed to be brave and save them for when I really needed them.
    it worked.
  8. When I was 10 my mom and I rode a bus for 16 hours overnight to a rally in Washington D.C., protesting the gulf war. We stayed for 8 hours, marching for peace, and then rode 16 hours home.
    every kid should get to do this stuff.
  9. when I was 12 my mom won a Fulbright Scholarship to study in Australia. We spent a year there. It was an amazing experience.
    every kid should get to do this stuff!
  10. When I was 17, my mom got remarried and had my brother Griffin. when I was 27, my mom and stepdad adopted three Sudanese American siblings, at the time 2, 3 and 5.
    It's been thrilling and wonderful to have siblings after so long as an only child, but even more than that I'm so glad that more people get to have my mom as their mom too. It wouldn't be fair to keep her all to myself.
  11. My mom had me when she was 19, a freshman in college. She's been a mom for 34 years, and she's currently got four kids at home who are 17, 12, 10 and 9.
    She's an English Professor, chair of her department, smart and amazing, nurturing and good hearted, and mom to five great weirdos, not to mention her students and all the others who consider her a little bit their mom too.
  12. All of my four siblings have had such different experiences being raised by my mom than the one I had all those years ago when it was just me and her. They've all had their own walks and jean jackets, three kisses and summer matinees, colored pencils and peace rally adventures with her.
    But mine are all mine.
  13. Happy Mother's Day!
    💖💖💖