Safety Net

Yesterday I was telling my friend Michelle a story about my mom; I decided to tell the whole story here. When my mom was thirteen her dad passed away, her mother went into what they called then a decline. She went into the bedroom and didn’t come out for over 20 years, my mother at 13 became the “lady” of the house, cooking and cleaning for her siblings on top of continuing to go to school. When she was 16 she had been making decisions for herself for so long she didn’t ask her mother for permission to do anything. Except one time, a boy asked her on a date and she did not want to go out with him, she didn’t want to hurt his feelings. She came up with the brilliant idea of asking her mother for permission, she knew without a doubt in her mind that her mother would say no, as the last time she really had looked at her daughter she was a mere 13 years old. So, into the bedroom my mother went, leaving the door open a crack, so the boy could hear the emphatic no she knew was coming. Much to her chagrin and shock, her mother said yes. My mom said she never asked her mother permission for anything ever again.
When I began dating, my mom told me that story and told me if there was ever a boy I didn’t want to go out with, when I was asking permission to go out, to shake my head no and she would say no. Now, at the time I remember thinking, like there is a chance I am not going to want to go out. But lo and behold, the day came when a boy asked me out, I did not want to go out with him and I didn’t want to hurt his feelings. He had called on the phone, my mom was walking by, I told the boy to hold on, asked my mom if I could go on a date with him, shook my head and held the receiver up so he could hear her no crystal clear.
My mom understood the shaking of the head, then her sense of whimsy took control of her, she began hollering, yes, hollering, NO YOU CANNOT GO OUT WITH THAT BOY, I CAN’T BELIEVE YOU EVEN HAD THE NERVE TO ASK, AS A MATTER OF FACT YOU’RE GROUNDED. By that point I was laughing so hard I had to bury the receiver in the sofa cushions. When my mom was done with her “tirade” she walked off whistling.
I went back to the boy on the phone and he said, I heard, never mind, when things calm down at your house then call me, I said, I sure will. Things never were calm in my house; it was always fun and exciting. So I never called.
My mom was my safety net, I miss that, I hope that my children feel that I am their safety net. No matter what happens, what they do, I will always be here. I hope everyone has or had as great a safety net as I was fortunate enough to have.

4 Replies to “Safety Net”

  1. That is a GREAT story. I’m **so** telling my girls that when they are old enough to date!! What a great mom.

  2. Don’t worry, Angie. I will be glad to go off on rants for you when some unwanted boy asks you out. I can even make my voice deeper and attempt to sound like your dad. ‘Cause that is what friends are for!

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