Proverbs 31: 26 - 28
She opens her mouth with wisdom, and on her tongue is kindness. She watches over the ways of her household. And does not eat the bread of idleness. Her children rise up and call her blessed.
Hands down, one of my FAVORITE parts of my thirties is what I refer to as “phone therapy” sessions with my mother. These conversations give me life. Gone are the drama filled days of teen angst and the you-can’t-tell-me-how-to-live days of my 20’s. These are the days of genuinely wanting her opinion on the big stuff and the urge to share all the small stuff.
My kid has a weird rash? I’m calling my mom. Teenager going through some stuff? Calling mom. Thinking of moving/changing careers/doing something different in any way? At least an hour call with my mom - minimum. These things must be sorted, examined, re-examined, discussed, five side conversations must branch off of it, and then we must circle back and summarize.
I’m writing this after just wrapping up a ninety minute “therapy session” where we discussed a wide range of intellectual topics such as who got the best bargain on end of season outdoor decor items, the ridiculous amount of sass I got from my teenager over the weekend, and how the butts of everyone on her side of the family suddenly deflate from a shapely bubble to a wide pancake somewhere between the ages of 35-40. Like I said, a wide range of topics. If our phones are ever tapped by “Big Brother,'' they are getting more than they ever bargained for.
On too many occasions to count she has called me out on my stuff, talked me down from bouts with anxiety, passed along sage wisdom, and walked me through recipes, home remedies, and business matters.
No topic is off limits. Aside from my marriage, this is the safest space on Earth. We discuss possible solutions to my problems and we also dabble in solutions to everyone else’s problems too. If we know you, we have probably “fixed” you. Let me know if you want the notes. We are the life coaches you never knew you had….or needed. Not judging, we just really like to discuss life's possibilities.
My sister and my teenagers have benefited from our unsolicited life coaching and, to our absolute bewilderment, they DO NOT take copious and detailed notes. To my sister’s credit, she does, however, nod indulgently before she does the opposite. To be fair, I think she and my mom have “fixed” me a time or two as well. That’s fair play.
During calls we have planned hundreds of trips (2 or 3 of which we have actually taken), hypothetically decorated several rooms that don’t belong to us, and once cataloged all the possible reasons my petite, prissy, seven year old princess passes an enormous amount of gas potent enough to rival her big brothers. Y’all should have been there for that one.
Did I mention she calls me out on my crap? She does. About 82% of the time I handle it gracefully. About 100% of the time she’s right. Far worse is when she gets quiet on the other end of the line. If she’s quiet on the line you better take another look at that life choice because you are about to mess up. Bad. Unfortunately, I have blown right past that red flag a time or two - much to my regret.
Far more often then she calls me out, she lifts me up. I tell you straight, this woman is an undiscovered Tony Robbins-esq motivational speaker. I have started chats feeling like a shamed puppy and ended them feeling like Mohammed Ali. For this alone I owe this woman - BIG TIME.
I know how lucky I am in this regard. If you are reading this and have a painful past with your mother, or have already lost her, please know I absolutely grieve with you. I know how fortunate I am to have this relationship and I treasure it even more so because I know it’s not one every woman gets to enjoy. Please accept my virtual hug and a promise to never take it for granted.
If you are lucky enough to still have your mom, give her a call. It may end up being the best (not to mention cheapest) therapy you ever had.
Love & Grace,