Posts Tagged ‘Mom’

Ah, the love of a good mother: fresh cooked food, a tender word or two, wiping your tears when you skin your knee, and punching you in the gut because she wants to dump you to pursue a career as a stripper:

(Click here to watch the report.)

Police officers arrested a 29-year-old Surprise woman after she reportedly told police she didn’t want her children any longer and punched her 11-year-old son in the stomach in front of officers.

On Friday, police received a call from an 11-year-old boy who said his mother was packing and moving to California and wasn’t taking him or his 6-year-old brother with her.

When police officers arrived, they contacted the 11-year-old outside the family’s apartment in the 16600 block of North Greasewood Street.

According to police spokesman Sgt. Mark Ortega, the boy’s mother, Christina Muniz, came out and told officers that she was “sick of her children” and wanted the police to take them so she can “have fun and play.”

Somehow, I don’t think the court will be giving her back the children — lucky for them.

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Obituary for Mom

(Another post saved from my LiveJournal account. This is an obituary I wrote for my mother, who died several years before I ever had a blog. It was originally posted February 24th, 2007.)

Today would have been my mother’s 88th birthday, had she not died on Memorial Day weekend, 2001. I didn’t have an LJ account at the time, so I couldn’t do a eulogy for her, as I had done for my Dad. Today seems a good day to correct that.

Mom was born Edna Catherine Parr in 1919. She hated her first name, so her friends knew her as “Catherine” or “Kay.” She came from English and German stock. Her English family, the Parrs, I’ve traced back to the 18th century — a village in Suffolk called “Exning.” Her German ancestors, the Zelts, apparently came from Bavaria or Alsace early in the 19th century. My great-great-grandfather, who came to America, Jacob Zelt, was a brewer in pre-Civil War Pennsylvania. Near as I can tell, he lied about his age to avoid being drafted into the Union Army. Sneaky devil. 🙂

Unlike her older brother and sister, Mom wasn’t an extraordinary student in school. By her own admission, she was “too interested in boys.” She was the editor of her senior class yearbook (San Bernardino High, 1937. I have a copy!), however. She met Dad soon after graduating, which lead to their marriage in 1938 and four children after that. (In case you’re wondering, my siblings Rick, Sharon, and Larry were 19, 15, and 13 when I was born in 1958.)

I can’t speak for my brothers and sister, but Mom and I were best friends. With her children grown and gone, I was a chance for her to have a second family. She had a very nuturing nature, and often said she wanted nothing more than to be a mother. (Those who slag stay-at-home moms, take note.) At the same time, she loved meeting people so, when we were old enough to be in school, she took part-time jobs in retail, which she loved. She had a marvellous way with customers.

She didn’t have the varied careers Dad did, but she was a rock of steadiness for us. A good Catholic, she refused to get a divorce, even though they were separated several times before I was born. (I should be grateful, since I wouldn’t be here to write this, otherwise!) She loved the Church, and always nattered at me that I should start going again. Sorry, Mom. 🙂

Mom was always very supportive of me, paradoxically being both over-protective and yet encouraging me to push myself. Her philosophy of raising children, “You don’t have to be the best. We’re proud of you if you just always try your best,” is something I want to pass on to my own, should I ever have any.

Lest anyone think she was a demure Donna Reed-type, forget it. Mom always encouraged her children to stand up for themselves. More than once in grammar school I was told “You never hit someone first. But, if someone hits you, you him them right back. Even if it’s a girl.” And if someone in any way threatened or attacked her family — watch out. The German in her came out, real quick. She may have been short, but she could have intimidated Andre the Giant. (What is it about our parents that, even when we’re bigger and stronger, they can put us in our place with one word or look?)

To give you an idea of what she was like, let me relate one story. When I was in the 6th or 7th grade, after we had moved to Sacramento, I was riding bikes with a friend on a Saturday afternoon. I don’t even remember the kid’s name –  let’s call him “Mike. ” We got to my house, and I brought Mike in for lunch. Mom wasn’t expecting us, but she made us sandwiches and chips and sat and talked with us. Just doing the “Mom thing.” When we left, as we were getting on our bikes, Mike turned to me and said “I wish your Mom was my Mom.”

It didn’t hit me until years later, but, think about that. How sad was his life that he wanted someone else for a mother, and how lucky was I? I don’t have a quantifiable answer, but I do know I was damn lucky. Even late in her life, when I published my first book, she made over it like it was something she wanted to pin to the fridge with a magnet. And, you know what? I was glad.

So, happy birthday, Mom. I hope there were daffodils on the table and all your collies, from Queenie to Melody, were there with you.

Miss you.

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