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How Sweet It is

This morning, wanting to beat the heat, we went to a drive-through window at a fast food place. Hubby placed my order, a lemonade with two sweeteners on the side. "It's sweet enough," the girl said, putting down the packets. Sometimes all it takes is a throw-away statement----that girl had "mom" written all over her.

From the minute we're born, moms make no bones about telling us what is right and how to live. When I do it to my adult son and even my husband, I temper it with, "It's my job, I'm a mother." If it has to do with clothing, as one time at the supermarket when I saw a spiffy young man with the kick pleat on his new jacket still sewn shut, I couldn't resist. I told him and he looked at me as if I'd just landed from Mars. "I'm a mother," I said, but his glare became even more icy. "But, I'm also a costume designer and it's my job to keep you from walking around looking like a rube." This knocked him off his high horse and he laughed. I made a fast exit, questioning my sanity. It's no wonder at a certain age kids rebel.

What things did your mother tell you in the spirit of helpfulness? What make you cringe and want to melt into the ground. My mother once helped me adopt a cat and paying for it said, in a booming voice, "And this is all you can produce after a year of marriage?"

If you want to have some fun, get the Do As I Say? journal and fill it with the phrases that still ring in your ears, perhaps the ones that you've even been known to, perhaps say to your own children. Ask virtually anyone for a few zingers and they'll spout like a geyser. You'll have material to fill many journals, so get one for everyone in your group and sit down together for a bonding session like no other.

Distance means we can chuckle at how intently our moms, worked to mold us, knowing they meant well. Today, it felt kind of nice to be looked after but I added my two packs of sugar, stirred furiously and took a huge gulp with an air of long-dormant rebellion.

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