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A roundup of news on sporting events, people and places in Southeast Michigan by columnist Jim Evans.

Friday, May 6, 2011

Saying thanks to Mom

Mom was always there.
She was maybe not the most knowledgeable person watching, but she was there.
At our football games. At our basketball games. At our baseball games.
Whatever we played, mom was there.
Not because she loved sports.
It was because she loved her sons.
All things considering, that was a nice bottom line to a whole bunch of box scores.
Mom is in her 80s now. She is coming over for Mother’s Day and we will all go to the park and have a picnic.
We’ll eat chicken and potatoes; fruit salad and probably cookies and brownies for dessert.
The menu does not seem to vary much.
Either does mom. She gets around fine. We do not worry about her as much as we probably should.
Mom lives alone with her dog, Brady.
He is a mutt; part German Shepherd and part origins unknown.
Brady has mom trained pretty well, too.
Just like she trained us as kids.
It couldn’t have been easy.
Mom and dad had three sons. That was good with dad, not so much with mom. I was her last hope for a daughter and I failed miserably.
Legend has it that a big groan was uttered in the delivery room way back when and it had nothing to do with labor pains.
Mom already had the name Cathy picked out.
Enter Jim, and exit the child bearing business. Three strikes and yer out! I was the third of three boys.
She wasn’t out of the mom business, though.
Along with everything else, mom taught us the importance of a work ethic.
She raised three kids and somehow worked full time and earned both a masters degree and a PhD.
She worked long hours as an educator, and still came home to make dinner.
All right, so some nights it was liver and onions, but at least there was food on the table.
Other nights it might have been Banquet pot pies and Tater Tots, or on Sundays it was usually a roast on the table with potatoes.
So this is Mother’s Day, and this is for all the moms out there who do not get enough credit.
It has not been easy for mom for awhile now.
She had to retire from a job she loved to serve as a caregiver.
First it was her own dad who died of complications from emphysema. Then it was her mom, Grandma Hedberg, who succumbed to cancer. Dad battled colo-rectal cancer for five years before he died and mom was largely alone when my brother, Bill, was stricken by a rare neurological disease that slowly but inexorably caused his death.
But mom hung in there because moms hang in there. It’s part of a job description I would absolutely not want to accept.
So this is a Thank You note.
Thank you for much, much more than you know.
For always being there, then and now.
For sitting in the bleachers when other accommodations would’ve been a lot more comfortable.
For food on the table, clothes on our backs, and love at the bottom of all of those box scores when we were growing up.
Thank God you will be with us today. Thank God you are with all of the other days.
Happy Mother’s Day, Mom.
Go on and have something to eat.
Nope, liver and onions is not on the menu.


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