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Things That Made My Mom Cringe

My mom is the superhero of all moms. She has been married to my dad for more than 40 years and they still hold hands! But that isn’t why she is my superhero.

She is my superhero because despite all the times I’ve embarrassed or hurt her feelings, she still hangs in there to give me another chance.

Just a few of the “lighter” highlights –

– I once made my mom take me to the emergency room for a splinter I had in my thumb. I thought it was life-threatening because it had a black circle around it. My mom drove me all the way to the hospital and stood by my side while the nurses rolled their eyes at me and my wound. Even worse, when they went to remove the splinter, I fainted and they had to give me smelling salts to bring me back. They gave my poor mom a look like, “Is she for real?”.

– Every time I got in trouble as a teenager and knew I would have to face my dad, she would first prep me on how to approach him. Then she would go prep him on how to talk to me after I approached him. Then she would give me the green light to go talk to him. After it was all overwith, she would come in and cheer us both up. It always ended with tears, hugs and a family dinner out on the town.

– All through grade school my mom would bake all kinds of iced goods for my birthday, bake sale and for holiday parties. On one particular night when I was in fifth grade, she had just finished up making a a few dozen chocolate cupcakes for a school party the next day. They were sitting on the counter covered with wax paper. They smelled soooo good and i begged her to please let me have one. She told me if I ate all my dinner I could.

At the dinner table, everyone had just dug into their salad and I had already polished off the main coarse.

“Can I have my cupcake now, Mommy?”

Stunned by my speedy scarfing, she got up, went to the counter and came back with my prize. I was a chocoholic even in fifth grade! I took one bite, closed my eyes and moaned in delight. My dad, who is the ultimate prankster 9one of things i love most about him), noticed how i was having too much fun with this cupcake.

“Is that good,” he said?
“Um-hmmm!”, I confirmed. Right then he kiddingly pushed it in my face. Before i could say anything, my mom jumped to my defense. She went and grabbed another cupcake off the counter and smashed it in his face! Then my dad went and got a cupcake and smashed in her face.

Me and my brother were laughing so hard, we almost peed our pants! I mean, who has ever seen their parents in a food fight?

“Here Kathy,” she said as she handed me a big cupcake – “smash it in Daddy’s face!”.

So I did!

It was a full-on cupcake riot!

My mom, dad and me noticed my brother was in the corner, sitting there laughing at us. He didn’t even have one speck on him. So we all three lunged for him and nailed him too, eyeglasses and all.

For a fifth grader, it was the best dinner action I have ever seen. So much that the next day I told the story to the entire fifth grade class!

That week was also parent teacher conferences. My parents came to meet my teacher and they were very polite and polished. The teacher excitedly ran up to them and said, “Oh Mr. and Mrs. Cano! Kathy told us all about your cupcake fight! You sound like you have such a fun family!”

My mom and dad had a new look on their faces that I had never seen before. Now that I have kids, I know EXACTLY what that look is because i’ve been there too!

I’m 38 and I still haven’t given my mom a rest.

I always tell her about my Crafty Chica web site hoping she will check it out one day. She finally did today! But imagine her surprise this morning when she clicked on over and out of the blue found my retelling of the ‘ovary at Carl’s Jr” story!

I think her face must have been as white as when I lured her into that bathroom stall! It’s quite an entertaining story when we are drinking hot chocolate on Christmas Eve, but when you see it online in words – Oh vey!

I love that story because it makes me feel like me and my mom have a little Lucy and Ethel in us. That was before I was married and we used to go everywhere together. Now with my busy life, we hardly ever get to do anything. I hate that.

What I didn’t point out in that ovary story, that I will now – is that it takes one loving and ultra dedicated mom to go through that experience.

And me not knowing a lot about female stuff? Well I left out that she always, always told me to ask if i had questions. But I was always too shy, I mean who wants to ask about stuff like that? Yuck!

That’s how it was back then, not just with my family but with my cousins and friends too. Nowadays instead of chi-chis and cookie, all these text books urge parents to have their kids say the “p’ and “v” word at age two. No way, not for me or my kids. I, like my mom, want to preserve their innocence in an obessive compulsive sort of way for as long as I can.

I thought about it long and hard: me, my mom and the bathroom stall. Even though it is a funny story, I know if Maya were to do that to me, I don’t think I’d make it past the bathroom door. I’m such a wimp! In fact, I probably would call Patrick to drive down there and help me. Just like I called him home for an “emergency” from band practice. The emergency was that I needed help changing DeAngelo’s nuclear bomb diaper…

Everyone has crazy, embarrassing anecdotes about growing up. They are what make family life so great. I wish so bad I could remember more of those stories. I cherish the time I have with my kids now, and it makes me want to cry wondering how much of “right now” they will really remember when they grow up. I hope they remember the good things along with the sad things too. That is a lot of the reason why I started this journal – so I can keep track of them before all the specific details begin to fade away.

I hope my mom will forgive me for not giving her a warning about the ovary story going online. I truly meant it with pure love and adoration. It is one of, if not my No. 1, favorite memory. I unintentionally tested the boundaries of her love and she went above and beyond. I feel honored!

And for that, she is my superhero.

“You want ovaries with that?” Why my mom won’t step foot in Carl’s Jr. again

Remembering loved ones on Dia de los Muertos


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