“Love You, Too.”

My mom’s last words to me were “Love you.”

That was seven years ago and she died – somewhat expected-unexpectedly – soon after.

I was her only child and we talked by phone every day. Those final words are especially comforting because we didn’t know that call would be our last.

She wasn’t very happy with me that day. But, no matter how angry we were with each other, or frustrated, or resigned to the other’s insolence, stupidity, or stubbornness, we always ended every phone call with “Love you.” “Love you, too.”

No matter what.

Here are four people and things my mom would love today if she were here …

1) Jose Altuve. My mom was nearly 5’11”. She enjoyed being taller than most everyone in her world. (“I don’t know how you ended up so short,” she would say to me since I’m just 5’6”. “Your weak gene pool,” was my answer. This would get me the silent treatment for a few hours.)

But, my mom would have loved Houston Astros second baseman Jose Altuve, because, although just 5’5”, he excels in a sport meant for taller, bigger, beefier players. She loved it when an underdog made good.

She would love to see Altuve do this …

altuve double play

Altuve starts an amazing double play on Thursday.

And, this on May 2 …

altuve dinger2

“How about this for the little guy!”

2) Adam Jones.  Baltimore Orioles All-Star centerfielder Adam Jones doesn’t mince words – winning or losing – and plays hard every day.

When he slammed into an uncushioned wall at Yankee Stadium on Friday night, banging himself up badly, his words to his manager were only, “I should have caught that ball.”

adam jones

My mom had a rare medical condition that kills most people it affects, but she lived with it for nearly 40 years. She lived in a lot of pain, but she rarely let on and never let it limit her. (She’s probably a little pissed that I’m even telling you this. But, now that I have, she would insist I also tell you that it wasn’t what killed her.)

She would love a gamer like Jones who could shake off a collision, not complain, and just keep playing.

3) Girls Playing Baseball. My mom was pretty clear on this – girls should have the same opportunities as boys. Period.  My mom was all for women Presidents, women priests, and women playing sports at the same level as men.

Had she thought much about it, she would have been insulted to learn that girls are encouraged to play softball because it’s believed they aren’t up to the rigors of baseball. She would be all for girls playing baseball just to stick it to the idiots who think they can’t.

(I’m pretty sure she would enjoy the fact that blogging about baseball is mostly a guy thing, but I’m doing it anyway.)

NPR’s Only A Game shared a story this week about “Baseball For All”, a girls baseball academy.

baseball for all

4) This Blog Post. When I was in, I think, seventh grade, my mom was in a snippy mood one day early in May and said to me, “I don’t want anything from you for Mother’s Day.” I made the mistake, born of innocence and youth, to believe her. I took my allowance, went to Woolworth’s, and bought myself a record with the money I had set aside for her gift. This, as I’m sure you have guessed, was a mistake. I eventually realized that “I don’t want anything from you” was mom code for, “Don’t you dare forget this holiday.”

I haven’t missed one since. This is for mom. Love you, too.

mom me

 Me and mom. (I’m the short one.)


12 thoughts on ““Love You, Too.”

      • Yeah, I lost my grandparents (who did much of the parenting while I was growing up) 20 years ago and sometimes I still think of it as yesterday. Relish the good times you had.
        And keep up the great work.

  1. Lovely remembrances of your mom. Made me think of my last phone conversation with mine, though I was able to be at her side at the very end. Mother’s Day is not quite the same now, except when you have a visit from a new mom-to-be as I was lucky enough to have today when a nephew and his very, very expectant wife dropped by. Thank you for sharing the memories.

  2. I honestly can see how yesterday was difficult. My mom just passed two months ago, so yesterday was tough, and really hit home. I just started think of all the times she drove me to practices, never missed a game, and made sure I had everything I needed. Moms certainly do make the world go ’round. All the best…

    • My heart goes out to you … I’m so sorry for your loss. Time is a great healer. I think you’ll find that the pain and sadness will eventually begin to subside, but the warm and loving memories remain. I think some of the grief we have is fear that we’ll forget or lose their spirit inside us. But, I’ve found that we don’t lose that. There isn’t a day that goes by that I don’t think about my mom and dad. I still have moments when I just wish I could tell them something about my day. But, the sadness grows softer with time, and there’s something deeply comforting about how the memories still stay warm in your heart. It’s nice to know that even as the years go by, we don’t lose that connection.

  3. While I cannot relate to the loss, I can relate to the fact that I’m losing my mom. She is slowing going downhill mentally (due to dementia and doesn’t have the best memory (long-term or short-term)). I just think about how I can make my little man (boy) have the best mom memories around as I’m pretty sure it will happen to me in about twenty years or so. I’d like him to have some great memories.

    • Beth, I don’t think there’s an “easy” way to lose a parent, but I’m pretty sure that losing a parent little-by-little is the hardest of all. My heart goes out to you.

      I know that you are creating wonderful, loving memories for your little man. I don’t think there’s a kid at any baseball game anywhere that has such a joyful, spirited time as your son does with his mom and dad at Davenport Field. We folks who sit nearby always smile when we see you all arrive. It is a joy for us! :)

  4. What the Kennedy assassination was for most of my mother’s generation– that moment in time where they remember exactly what they were doing, exactly what was taking place–the Harvey Haddix “perfect” game was for her. Needless to say, I loved this.

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