She claims you as her own in public.
The other day I went to a retail party for my friend who sells a line of clothes. I went strictly to sip wine with my home girls and get a couple hours away from my sweet and sour children, but I somehow left with two dresses in a pretty bag. I've always suffered from buyer's remorse, so rather than feel excited about my new garments, I felt guilty.
I drove off with instructions for Siri to "Call Mommy." She always makes me feel like the most deserving person in the world, so naturally she countered my purchasing woes with, "I'm so proud of you! Your wardrobe needed some sprucing. I bet you look great in them. Send me some pictures."
I hung up the phone with a smile and gratitude in my heart for my sweet Mom, who has been the comfort to my every concern for almost 30 years. I have the coolest mom ever, and below are 20 signs you do, too:
1. She's nurturing.
I remember my mom carrying me on her hip everywhere she went. She would set me on the dryer while putting things in the washer, then pick me up again. She clearly toted me around for way too long, and probably still would if she could.
2. She doesn't force you to do things you don't want to do.
When I was little I was shy around new people. I would put my head under my mom's shirt against her belly. She would simply touch my face with a gentle hand like a pregnant woman trying to show off her bump for a photo, never forcing me out of my shell.
3. She's good at snuggling.
My mom and I used to sleep with our limbs intertwined. It was the most comfortable and secure feeling in the world. I didn't even care that she only wore an over-sized shirt to bed; I still wanted to be between her skinny thighs.
4. She makes you feel good, despite your mess-ups.
My mom told me I was an amazing dancer in my recital even though my hat fell off my head. I looked like a lost puppy, trying to pick it up without messing up my shuffle-hop-step. (I know what I looked like because she bought the recording on VHS.)
5. She honors your choices.
In kindergarten I needed glasses, and she let me pick out the largest and most colorful frames. They looked ridiculous on my tiny face, but she continued to claim me as her own in public.
6. She makes you feel attractive, even in your awkward phases.
I eventually had to rock my absurd glasses with the nerdiest haircut because I got gum stuck in my big, frizzy curls. Everyone in my first grade class laughed at me when I walked into school late on a Monday morning, but my mom somehow convinced me I was still beautiful.
7. She lets you save face.
One time I peed in my leotard in dance class. I didn't tell my mom, but simply told her I never wanted to go back. She said OK without asking me questions. When I was 19, I thought I was coming clean by telling her the reason I never wanted to go back, and she said, "Oh, I knew that."
8. She writes you love notes.
I was never embarrassed by the ones she left on napkins in my lunch box, and always appreciated the ones she hid in my room.
9. She makes you feel special.
My mom picked me up from second grade early because she wanted me to go to her ultrasound appointment with her when she was pregnant with my sister. She told me she was nervous and wanted me to hold her hand. Even though I was young, I was important.
10. She makes time for you.
That wasn't the last time she took me out of school early. As I got older we would go for pedicures together, because even though she had four children, she made one-on-one time for all of us.
11. She knows just how to celebrate your birthday.
My mom used to take me to Lone Star because she knew I loved ribs as much as I enjoyed throwing peanut shells on the floor.
12. She makes dreams come true.
In eighth grade I just needed this leather jacket from the GAP. Even though my birthday is 10 days before Christmas, she managed to buy me the $200 coat. Sorry I was so bratty, Mom. At least I wore it for years.
13. She sticks up for you.
One time my brother made fun of my ears that were two different sizes. We were in front of a bunch of people and I was so embarrassed. She got back at him for me by asking if the mole above his lip was a piece of sh*t. She still sticks up for me.
14. She's understanding.
In high school I ran time mile too fast in the heat and felt funny. I went to the nurse, but eventually just left school and went home. The school thought this was suspicious and wanted to drug test me. My mom asked me if I would pass it, but in a way that invited honesty.
She said, "I know a lot of teenagers try grass and I just want you to tell me." Often during my teen years she would say, "I remember what it was like to be your age."
15. Her joy is your joy.
My mom would watch me try on clothes in fitting rooms and say, "Let's get it!" even though that often meant she quietly put things for herself back.
16. She supports you even when it's hard.
My mom dropped me off at the airport to go backpacking through Europe, and encouraged me to quit my job and move to the Caribbean with my fiance. I'm a mom now, and don't know how she managed to do these things.
17. She'd take your pain for you if she could.
My mom stood beside me in labor and delivery, and convinced me to get an epidural when I wanted to prove to the world how strong I could be. She told me to bite her hand when the pain was so intense, and I did until I threw up on her feet.
18. She knows just what you need.
My mom bought me these amazing granny panties after I gave birth, claiming they "hold everything in." They really did. When someone asked me at three-weeks postpartum if I was pregnant, she went out and got me Spanx.
19. She's always on call.
I recently dialed her at 3 AM to vent my frustrations about my children waking me up all night long. She soothed me and never even pointed out the fact I was doing the same thing to her.
20. She's your best friend.
No topics are taboo and no details are TMI. We share secrets, wine, and lots of laughter. Even if she wasn't my mom, I'd want to hang with her.
My mom understands me, thinks the best of me, and has my back. When something unsettles me, it's her I want. Even though I'm grown, and a mother myself, I'll never outgrow my need for her.