Posts Tagged ‘Happy Birthday Mom!’


Posted: May 8, 2016 in Inspiration, Life, Things I Love

For those of you who don’t know, my mom is a saint. If you ask anyone who knows Kathryn Shoemaker or had her as a teacher they will say the same. I have never met a person my mother taught that didn’t say she touched them deeply and had a positive effect on their lives. If I’ve been lucky enough to have had that same effect on a student, they can thank my mom. She’s the reason I became a teacher.

I know what you’re thinking, everyone thinks their mom is a saint.

But my mother really is.

You know how many times I’ve screwed up in my lifetime? I mean really screwed up? Made some damn poor life decisions that hurt people I love? Do you know the one person who stood by me, loved me unconditionally, and believed in me no matter how big of an idiot I was?


My mother thinks I can do literally anything, which in turn has always made me believe that, damn it, maybe I can. It’s amazing what you can do when one person totally and completely believes in you. It makes you want to prove them right.

And it makes you want to never, ever, let them down.

My mom has taught me many things, not the least of which is independence. Let me tell you a story about the day I entered 1st Grade. We lived across from Twin School in Bourneville, and my sisters and I were to walk to school from there, a short jaunt of perhaps 100-yards or so. I don’t remember what I wore, but I remember carrying a lunch pail that was yellow and in the shape of a school bus. I was very excited to go to my first-ever day of school.

Anyway, Mom was staying at home at the time and she’d sent us off, probably enjoying the thought that summer was over and she wouldn’t have the three of us in her hair all day.

I should probably add here that my sisters are older than me, Karen by 8-years and Sara by 4-years. So, at the time I was entering 1st Grade, Sara was entering 5th and Karen the 9th. Their job? Walk their innocent little brother to his first day of school.

And that they did until I got about halfway there. At that point I got cold feet and hightailed it back home. My sisters, loving siblings that they were, waited about half a second and continued on to school without me.

Thanks sisters!

Note: My sisters claim no memory of this, but I’d probably block it from my mind too had I performed such a heinous act.

But anyway, I didn’t care, I was heading back to Mom and the safety of my home. Screw this school stuff, I’d made the decision. Even if I hadn’t even started yet, it wasn’t for me. Mom would understand. With all this in mind I get back home, walk up the steps and open the front door, or try to.


But hey, I knew Mom was in there because I’d just left 3-minutes ago.


Knock knock.




After a few minutes of knocking, yelling and getting no response, I did the only thing I could do. I walked back to school, by myself.

I don’t know what happened when I finally walked in, but I survived. The point is Mom knew that it wouldn’t help me to hold my hand and walk me to school. I’d learn more quickly and get over my fear by doing it myself.

That story explains my mother in a nutshell. She never jumped in to rescue me from adversity because she knew that letting me get through it by myself is what would build my self-esteem and confidence.

Why is that so hard of a concept for some parents to understand?

There are a thousand other stories I could tell about my mom, Kathryn Shoemaker. She’s honest to a fault, just ask my sisters. I distinctly remember Mom opening up a Christmas present one of my sisters had given her. I don’t remember what it was, but I remember her opening it, taking a look and saying,”What am I going to do with that?”

Of course, since I’m her favorite she likes everything I get her.

Mom reads this site and, unsurprisingly, she thinks it’s great, even the weird stuff. So this next part is for her . . .

Mom, I know I’ve been far from perfect, but you’ve never cared about that. You’ve told me when you thought I was wrong while loving and appreciating me just the way I am. You’ve always been right there, loving unconditionally, providing support, and believing in me no matter what. I‘ve always known I could count on you, and from the time I was a little kid I’ve always known that you were on my side. 

I love you Mom.