My mother is a jeweler. She’ll sit through a couple hours of shows with baskets of beads and findings and thousands of other little pieces. With whip-quick hands she’ll snatch up a few kernels of turquoise, a few gems and a charm or twenty, and before you know it there are fifteen works of art waiting to dress the neck of as many Texas gals.
I’ve been living in my home town these last couple of months post Peace Corps, and I still can’t get enough her creative spirit, nor the kitchen chats, floats in the pool, estate sale sweeps, and Big Brother marathons with that wonderful woman.
Today is her birthday, and a year ago on this day the two of us were dancing with our friends in Stepanavan, Armenia, munching khorovats and toasting to peace, friendship and some incredible cake.
I remember when I saw her walk through the gates at the Yerevan airport, beginning her trip through Armenia. I hadn’t seen her in 17 months. I remember grabbing her hand while we searched for a taxi home, and the familiarity of that clasp brought a rush of all that I miss when I don’t get to see her everyday. She’s my mom, a true friend, an immeasurable gift.
To her I say: Happy Birthday, Mom, you wonderful old building and loan!