Photo by: iStock

My Mother The Hero

Photo by: iStock

Growing up, we had this oven timer – a dial-set timer – that was dysfunctional to say the least. If you didn’t turn it just right, the thing would sound off every 10 minutes. It was vile, and only my mom could shut it off properly (sometimes I wonder if she spent time on the bomb squad). But should she head out to the store (or worse, a longer errand) and something was baking in the oven, it was only a matter of time before panic ensued.

Try as we might, not one of us could turn the damn thing off. Maybe we would manage a few moments of silence, but just when we thought we had conquered the mighty oven timer, there it was – that wretched, grating buzz blaring through the house. Finally, my mother would return, glide into the kitchen and deftly turn the dial just so, instantly restoring calm and order to our household. The woman had a gift.

I used to joke that the dial would go on to haunt the future inhabitants of our family home, but thankfully we eventually remodeled our kitchen and replaced the defunct timer with a digital (and far more agreeable) model. Crisis averted.

My mother’s ability to navigate chaos, to steer our ship through choppy waters, to remain stoic during our most vulnerable moments has always brought me comfort. Now that I’m a mom, it’s a skill I hope to someday master. And then I realize it’s not a skill – it’s a superpower.

Raising three girls was tough. My mom did it with grace, resourcefulness and joy. Somehow, amidst the madness, there she was – encouraging us to speak our minds but to still “remember our pleases and thank yous.”

Negotiating an apology between two daughters at war while whipping up a meal worthy of a five-star restaurant.

Inexplicably locating a lost sock, jacket or book while still getting us to school on time.

Secretly damning every bully, frenemy or teacher who wronged us (grudges that persist to this day), but pushing us to be the bigger person.

Offering the mailman a cold drink while mailing off our monthly bills.

Praising each and every drawing, poem, sidewalk art or macaroni masterpiece we ever created.

Demonstrating true entrepreneurship and showing three young women how to devise a business by way of passion.

Surrounding us with accomplished, witty, salt-of-the-earth women who weren’t afraid to share an opinion (or a good laugh).

Making time each and every week to help those less fortunate.

Exhibiting kindness – always.

These days, she’s helping us raise our own children while giving us the room to do it our way. I like to think she’s transferring her mom powers by way of osmosis. I can hope, anyway.

Sometimes being a parent is turning off the oven timer. Sometimes it’s not. Sometimes it’s wearing a macaroni necklace when you should be wearing a cape.

Jillian Gordon is the Managing Editor of A Los Angeles-based lifestyle writer and editor, her work has appeared in Beauty Launchpad, Nailpro Magazine, Saturday Night Magazine and Westside Today. She is also the former Content Manager of Jillian welcomed her son Flynn in November, 2016.

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