Today, my mother would be 91 years old if she was still with us. My mother has been gone 28 years, and I miss her as much today as I did when she passed away 28 years ago. She never made it to 63. She was far too young to die. She like my father and brother was a smoker, and I believe that contributed to her death. I heard and read that we baby boomers were misled with shows like Leave it to Beaver and Father Knows Best because no one had ideal families like the ones portrayed in these shows. I believe that mine came close. No, my mother did not clean house dressed-up like June Cleaver. She was a stay-at-home mother most of my growing up years. When I was in high school she got a part-time job. It was so part-time that it didn’t interfere with her raising us.
She kept a clean, neat home and was there when we got home from school. She cooked three meals a day for us and as a family she made sure all four of us ate our dinner together. She washed clothes and hung them out to dry. Then she ironed them. In my early years we did not have two cars and my dad took the car to work, so she walked to the grocery store. She would pull me in the wagon and then I would have to walk back because the groceries were in the wagon. We lived in Villa Park, Illinois and when we really wanted to do shopping for clothes or other things we would take the bus to Elmhurst or Oak Park. I have memories of those home permanents that she gave me, and how I hated that! She was involved in the PTA, Brownies, Girl Scouts, and Cub Scouts. She was a room mother for my class several times. Do they still have room mothers? I always felt (even as teenager) I could talk with my mother. She was always there for me.
After I was married and had children she was their only babysitter. Sometimes they would stay with her, just because they wanted to stay at Grandma’s house, not because they had too. Not only was she a great mother, but also a great grandmother. I think she would love to know her great-grandchildren, and I know she would be proud of her Grandchildren and Great-grandchildren, and I hope she would be proud of me.
She started the ancestor hunt with me back in 1979 before the Internet when we had to do things by mail, and make trips to libraries, and archives. I sometimes wonder what she would think about how it’s done today, and what she would think of my genealogy work. I wish she was here to share all the ancestors I have found and the stories about their lives. She was not only my mother, but my best friend and confidant too. I’ll always remember good times and fun we had together. Miss you Mom. RIP
Copyright © 2015 Gail Grunst