I am so happy to be able to wish my mom a Happy 80th Birthday today! My mom lives in California and unfortunately we were not able to be there but we talked with her on the phone twice and sent her a special DVD where everyone in the family recorded special messages for her.
I wrote a special tribute "80 things I love about my Mom" and read it to the videocamera as well as included a copy for her on rose themed paper. I won't repost it here because many of the sentiments were rather personal but I was so glad I wrote it.
As a special surprise, since I knew my mom wasn't having a party or cake and was trying to slide into 80 gracefully, we sent her a special chocolate mousse torte cake so that she would have a sweet treat for her special day. Add those together with the Sees pecan buds and I think my mom might have had a bit of a sugar high tonight!
I asked my dad to make sure to get at least a picture or two. When we're with them, I tend to take lots of pictures but I don't think they take too many when we're not around so I definitely wanted at least one!
My mom isn't one for huge fanfare. We were in California last summer for my dad's 80th and although the day didn't go exactly as planned, it was wonderful spending time with them. We had invited them up here for my mom's birthday but travel is difficult for them so we will try and make it to California this summer since we weren't in a position to travel down there this week.
My mom has a huge heart and I am so blessed that she and my dad chose to adopt me all those years ago. They didn't know quite what they were getting themselves into when they picked me!
You may ask what this blog has to do with autism awareness month and I'll tell you that my mom & dad have both been incredibly supportive of our family. They've ALWAYS been supportive but when we shared Ryan's autism diagnosis a few years ago and Justin's Asperger's diagnosis shortly thereafter and then... gulp... a year later, shared my own "Aha" Aspie traveler moment, they were always there with unconditional love.
They have read books about autism and Asperger's and we've exchanged articles and information many times. Since autism presents differently from boys to girls and adults to children, I wanted them to read a couple books I found particularly valuable in helping me understand Asperger's in females. The most recent one I read was "Aspergirls - Empowering Females with Asperger's Syndrome" and the first one I read was "Pretending To Be Normal - Living with Asperger's Syndrome". If you are a female on the spectrum or have a daughter or female relative on the spectrum, these books are great reads and for me, they were very insightful.
My parents are always interested in hearing about therapies and educational support for the boys and during that first year after diagnosis which was emotionally charged, they were there for us when we were struggling to make ends meet. They provided love, a listening ear and moral support.
My mom in many ways is quite different from me. She is very organized and neat and is an AMAZING cook. I am the antithesis of domestic goddess. My mom is an early bird and I am a night owl.
I was really into participating in sports growing up (bowling and tennis being the primary) and she chauffered me around to my leagues and tournaments without ever a complaint. When I participated in musical community theatre and high school plays, she ran lines with me and she and my dad would always come to my performances.
My mom and I have always enjoyed doing puzzles together and going to used book sales at the Los Altos Library. Sadly since moving to Washington we haven't done that but I remember each one fondly.
I have so many positive, amazing things I can say about my mom and how I have been blessed to have her as my mother. I miss seeing her and my dad very much and look forward to seeing them again!
HAPPY 80th BIRTHDAY Mom! Thanks for supporting our family and wearing blue! Thanks for reading the books I send and sending me articles that you think I might appreciate. I hope you enjoyed your day with dad and I hope you continue to enjoy your cake! I'll eat a piece vicariously through you... and yet it will go to my derriere anyway!
We love you, Mom / Gram! Happy Happy 80th Birthday!