Mi Madre es THE BEST!

Today’s my mom’s birthday, and I am pumped! For those of you who don’t know, I LOOOOVVVEE birthdays! I probably get as excited (if not more excited) for birthdays than I do for Christmas. But this post isn’t about me, it’s all about Mom.

My mom and I have always been really close. Being a teacher and coach, she always had breaks at the same time as me. Therefore, we have lots of memories at water parks and on go-carts during the summer. For a couple summers in a row (I was maybe in second grade), we vowed to do something we had never done each week. Those summers were the greatest because not only did she allow me to drive places I had never been on my go-cart, but we went to zoos, the Capitol, museums, and cool restaurants all over the state.

I see so much of myself when I look at her. Without a doubt, we look a lot alike, but we also share an almost-too-much competitive drive, love of all sweets (including sweet potatoes- neither my dad or Josh like them. bummer), and a knack for getting into things we aren’t supposed to be in (her advice is always, “Act like you know what you’re doing, and other people will think you do.”). It is from these similarities that together we have taken on the role of player/coach for 4 years. Yes, for four years she was my coach in both softball and volleyball. Some other fun things include me using the restroom at the Federal Reserve in D.C. while an armed guard stood outside my door. Yes, my mom talked them into letting me in when they really aren’t supposed to have outsiders. We’ve gotten in free at too many softball tournaments to count. My mom once saw Jenny Finch (U.S.A. softball player) and not only talked to her, but got to hold her hand and look at her new engagement ring. One time we went to visit someone at their incredible mansion, and being the Griswolds that we are, we drove up their walkway thinking it was the driveway. Whoops!

This is an example of my mom getting us into stuff. Alabama’s former coach, Gene Stallings , was on our plane, and my mom befriended him even getting our picture taken with him.

One time in Chicago, my mom dropped her camera on an overhang (pictured above). As you can see, we didn’t think it was funny at the time, but now it’s hilarious.

Talk about competitive. When we went to the Grand Canyon, my mom kept slipping on the ice and falling, but she insisted she wasn’t falling. She was “sitting down.” This is a picture of her “sitting down.” You be the judge.

We honestly have too many memories to count. Through the thick and thin, good and bad, funny and sad, she’s been there for me and has been quite the encouragement. I am so glad that she was able to be there with me the WHOLE week of my wedding in May. There was a time when I didn’t know if she would be with me at all. When I was in sixth grade, my mom has a massive heart attack at the high school where she works. The paramedics and E.R. staff had to revive her three separate times. Our family was told to say our goodbyes because she would not make it through the night. Luckily both of my parents are fighters, and my dad wouldn’t take that as a final answer. He got my mom transported to a hospital in Birmingham where she was in ICU for more than a week. Once she regained some strength, she underwent triple bypass surgery, and about two weeks later she came home. That really was the best Christmas ever because all we wanted (Mom to be home and well) happened. Another bonus was that she had to sleep in a recliner in our living room, so for months I got to sleep on the couch too!

In conclusion, this day is exciting because it’s a birthday. It’s my mom’s birthday! But this day is especially exciting because there were days when we weren’t sure she’d have another birthday. I have no clue why I am the lucky girl who got to keep her mom when others lose theirs. But whatever the reason, I am so thankful. Happy birthday, Mom!

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