Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Mama on: Watching Your Step

"Watch your step, honey."

Okay, we're going to make this one short and sweet.  I just got the funniest question from a friend's daughter:  "Why do you walk like that in heels?"

Answer:  Because I am a woman and my body is different from a man's, so I have to move with a certain sway, grace, and speed in these shoes.

Hmm...  Do I REALLY have to point out the Mamaknology in this?
Okay, just in case it went over anyone's head, the Mamaknology here is that a woman can't handle herself just any old kind of way when she steps out into the world -- and it doesn't matter whether she's wearing pumps, flip-flops, or going barefoot.  Women walk differently from men because of the way God made us -- you know, the wider pelvis and all that, but there's more.  Women are blessed with an intrinsic balance and grace, and that gives us an obligation.  It's up to us to figure out how to maintain and increase that balance and to manage it with grace, especially when we put our foot on the ground to make our moves through the world.

Girls can't do what the boys do and still be respected as women, and not every woman is a lady.  You have to learn to walk in the shoes you chose, and you have to make that walk count every day of your life. 

Simple.  Right?

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Mama On: Coincidence

"Everything happens for a reason."

This year Fathers Day falls on June 19th, and June 19th has a lot of importance in my life.  My mother and father were married on June 19, 1949.  If they were both still with us, this would have been their sixty-second wedding anniversary.  Sixty-two is a lot of years and a lot can happen over that much time, but almost right up until the day he died, my father smiled when he talked about my mother.  At 87, he still called her his, "Baby."

As it was, my mother passed in 1985, giving them nearly thirty-five years together. You have to know that I totally appreciate being a product of that kind of love.  But it makes me stop and think... what if that tall, good-looking soldier had never met the pretty statuesque girl from Philly?  What if he hadn't had enough respect for her to learn who she really was and to treat her like a lady?  What if she had been more of a rump-shaker than a wife?  What if neither of them was interested in family?
After all of that, all I want to know is:  How in her infinite Mamaknowledge did she know?  Could it really have been a matter of coincidence, or did God make an unavoidable plan that resulted in their marriage and me getting here?

One summer night a long time ago, sitting on the back steps with my head in my mother's lap, I asked that question.  Daddy smiled and looked at my mother.  I watched her smile back at him and felt loved.  In her infinite Mamaknowledge, the answer was simple. "Everything happens for a reason." 

Now all these years later, I think I understand.  Yes, she was trying to fill in a blank for me, but being who and what we were, when and where wewere, being in the midst of love was no accident.  And I hae to say that I am glad -- and more than a little proud -- to be a part of the reason my parents found each other and stayed together.