Hey you. Yes, you. Call your mother. Today, not tomorrow. Don’t wait for her birthday. Or next Tuesday. Or once a week on Saturday. Or tonight. Call her now. Don’t wait around for Mother’s Day.
Put her first today. Today, put her first.
Believe me, she doesn’t expect it. At all. She never expects it. And she’s thinking about you at this very moment.
She’s wondering what you’re doing. And how you’re doing.
She’s wondering if you are indeed being careful. With yourself. With others. With your body. With your head and your heart. She’s remembering a few times when you weren’t. And she shudders. Just now, while coupling your father’s socks, she thought of you bungee-jumping off a bridge when you were studying abroad. She had goosebumps and she closed her eyes for a moment. Her brow furrowed, and she pursed her lips. She shook her head quickly to rid herself of the thought.
She’s wondering if you know how to love and be loved. She’s hoping that you are being a giver. And that you are minding your manners. And that you are being kind.
She’s wondering how you are doing at work. And if you are stressed out about money. “Honey, do you need money?” She’s thinking you could probably use some undershirts. Yes, she still thinks this way. Go ahead and roll your eyes.
She’s curious if anything she ever said or did really sticks with you. If you can hear her voice sometimes, in much the same way that she can still hear your little voice, the voice you had when you were in kindergarten, and of course, with this thought comes the one where she remembers herself younger.
Because so long ago, she was a young mother. Now that you’re older, and as you go about your life, doing all the things you do, she still wonders. She still wants for you, all the things in life that will make your heart happy.
So tell her you love her. Call her now and tell her. Let those sweet words roll off your tongue. When she earnestly starts to ask all her questions, stop her. Just stop her cold. Tell her, “No, Mom.” Tell her to just hush for a minute.
Because this phone call is about her, not you. Because you called to check on her. To ask her how she’s doing. And what she’s doing. And you called because you are wondering if her heart is happy. And she’ll say, “Of course, dear, why wouldn’t it be?” because she never wants you to worry.
This time, you called to listen. To listen to her the way she always listens to you. To cradle her with your attention, the way she cradles you. To cheer for her the way she always cheers for you.
You called to tell her that you do, you do hear her voice in your head. It’s that soft voice filled with love and encouragement and caution and hope. It’s that voice that will always be there, attached to you. You called to let her know that sometimes, every so often, it’s the one voice you hear. The one that rings clear.
You called to ask her for her opinion. Her opinion about the world. She’ll catch her breath and smile for the rest of the day because her heart will flutter. She’s actually quite smart, your mother. Her life is interesting, too, you know.
Just ask her. Your questions fill her heart. Your questions will restore her spirit in ways you may never understand. Your questions are so much better than a card or a gift. Or the obligatory phone call, on a day like Mother’s Day, from you.
Why? Because she’s your mother every day. But she’s a person too.