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Sunday, November 8, 2009

Happy Birthday Mom!

Yesterday Alex and I took my mother shopping. The sun was shining and we had no one asking us, "Are we done yet?" It was quite fun, and of course we laughed a lot.

I really believe that many of us eventually reach a point when we realize, "Yes, I really am my mother." Sure, there have been signs for years. By the age of two, Alex was often correcting people by saying, "Well, actually..." Where'd she come up with that? It was amusing. Then there was the occasional, "What do you think? I'm stupid?" remark from my hubby when I pedantically educated him on something he already knew.

Well, let me relate a little story that took place yesterday that puts it in perspective. But first a little background.

My mother is very intelligent and extremely well-read. Despite my degree in literature and MBA, she often outwits me with her vast knowledge. And I'm very, very careful not to bring up anything in history which will put that certain expression on her face that says, "My God. How can you not know that?"

So, back to my story...

As we traversed to Omaha, I was providing mother details of Alex's field trip to the Religious Museum of Art in Logan, Iowa. (BTW, it is quite a treat if you have never visited.) She asked if the museum only contained Christian artifacts. I responded,

"Mostly. But a few other religions were represented - there were some interesting Jewish artifacts."

So, my mother, the educator, explained, "Well, you know that Christianity and Judaism are based from the same source."

Okay. Maybe I'm not familiar with all the details of Watergate or the Russian invasion of Afghanistan in the 1970's. But common mother...I didn't fail Sunday School 101. However, instead of defending my knowledge, I decided to play along....

"Really? I didn't realize that."

From my peripheral vision, I see my mother's head turn toward me. She grows quiet. I know she is starting to wonder "how clueless can my daughter really be?"

Then she laughs. She knew that I had gotten her this time. That's one of the things I love most about her. Her ability to laugh at herself...I'm pretty good at that too. Hopefully, that trait gets passed on to my kids.

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