Mom has always been a little harsh on us, or at least on me. It was rare to hear any praises out of her mouth, but when she did praise me it sure meant a lot.
When I told mom and dad about my plans to qualify for Boston I got opposing viewpoints:
Dad, the perpetual optimist and cheerleader: You can do it, I believe in you.
Mom, without her ‘filter’ as usual: I think it’s going to be hard. You’re only getting older.
Of course I’ve learned to take her words with a grain of salt, not without first feeling some of the air let out of the tires.
When I qualified I called to tell them the good news:
Mom: That’s awesome!
She said it like she never once doubted I was too old.
Then I made the mistake of telling them about my chafing injury:
Dad: How did that happen?
Mom, without hesitation: That’s because you’re fat.
Me, protesting: I am NOT FAT!
Prior to leaving for Taiwan earlier this year, mom had said traveling was too tiring, and that she wasn’t coming back for another 5 years. V managed to seduce her to come back next year by dangling a Switzerland trip in front of her face.
In retaliation to the ‘fat’ comment:
Me: You’re going to have to fly to Boston in 2015 for the race.
Mom, defiant: Wait, that means I’m traveling every year.
Me: This is special.
Mom, resigned: Fine.
Gotta love mom.
Admittedly, I don’t think I’d turn out as well had mom and dad both been the coddling type. It’s good to have a balance in the house. If I need a bit of reassurance, I’d go to dad; but if I’m ever due for a reality check, mom would dole it out in a dollop.
Incidentally, J gets a kick out of mom’s lack of filter, saying she tells it like it is.