My mother likes to take credit…for pretty much everything.
I’m not kidding. Whether you scored a great deal on a pair of shoes, or won the Nobel Peace Prize, it’s somehow linked to her.
And she’s serious.
Not only does she like credit, but she will change the details of stories around to make it so that she is fully responsible for whatever awesomeness you have just achieved. She will also do the reverse and claim she had nothing to do with it if your luck goes south.
Need some examples?
- My wedding. The second one to be clear. Because she casually mentioned that we should consider Bourbon Steak in the Turnberry resort in the infancy stages of wedding planning, she loves to point it out every chance she gets that we DID in fact get married there and that the wedding was perfect. Every. Chance. She. Gets. It could be as subtle as someone commenting on a wedding pic and her saying, “Yes the kids got married there. It was my idea.” Or more bravado, like pointing it out while we are on her balcony, you might hear her say something along the lines of, “Ava, see that building over there? That’s where mommy and Jason got married! Isn’t it beautiful? It was all gram’s idea. They wanted to get married in some ugly room at a restaurant in Boca that doesn’t even compare to anything in Aventura. Because Aventura is awesome.”
- My house. To be fair, my parents were very involved in the house hunting. It was the first time I was ever purchasing a home and I value their opinion. Plus, Bob is a pro with a contractor background so I needed him to point out any red flags before we pulled the trigger. However, my mom seems to remember it very differently and claims to have actually found the house we currently live in (not the case). And when I point out how that’s not at all what went down, she changes her story a little saying things like…”you were looking at dumps on the other side of town until I convinced you to look in this area.”
- My stroller. I have like 32 strollers so I didn’t want another one. My mom was trying to convince me (read: nag me) to get a snap & go while Sienna is still in an infant car seat. I did and it’s definitely a huge help. But, every time I take the thing out of the trunk and my mom is around, she circles it like a shark wearing a shit-eating grin and says, “That’s a nice looking stroller. I mean really. Who told you to get it?”
- Diagnosing any medical condition. Jason calls her Dr. Westfall because she thinks she can diagnose any ailment in anyone. Just tell her your symptoms and she will spit out a disease just like WebMD. If she happens to be right you’ll never hear the end of it and if she’s wrong, she’ll find a way to spin it. Either way, she’s right.
- Stellar negotiation skills. She goes on and on about what a good negotiatior she is. Specifically with car leases. Because she has a CRAZY low monthly payment for a luxury car…..because she probably put like $15K down. But that’s neither here nor there. She also uses said negotiation skills at Target where she pretends she’s at a folding table on any corner of NYC haggling over a fake Prada. She gives zero fucks. And 99% of the time they listen to her!
That’s just a small sampling of her credit-mongering, but make so mistake that it’s pretty much part of daily conversation and there is no statute of limitations. She’s still talking about things dating back to when I was 14. And it happens with little things too, like telling me how amazing my hair looks and then swiftly reminding me that she’s the one who always tells me to keep it long. Or complimenting a pair of shoes and reminding me that she was the one who told me to look in Bloomingdale’s to find them. Or commenting on how much better Sienna’s fussiness is ever since I bought new bottles like she told me to. It goes on and on and on.
As much as I tease her and bust her balls, I do have to give credit where credit is due. You see, Arlyne is not just a main character in my blogs. She’s not just accidentally hilarious and totally gangster. She is, undoubtedly, the best fucking mother on the planet. She also happens to be the best mother-in-law and grandmother. And, I fully giver her credit for the following, which is by no means an exhaustive list.
I think one of the most important lessons she’s bestowed on me is to not take shit from anyone and not to let anyone bully you or knock you down. Along this same lines, she is the epitome of a mama bear. She taught me to fiercely protect my young and to destroy anyone who tries to mess with them. This woman will hold a grudge against you for the rest of your life if you even look at either of her children sideways.
She’s also the best cheerleader. She celebrates my successes and kvells, no matter how small. She loves me so hard and I feel it in every fiber of my body. I want my girls to feel that same way about me. She has always gone above and beyond for her kids and spoils the shit out of mine. Ava lives for her and to see the bond they have makes me burst with pride. I know Sienna will feel the same. She’s the fun grandma. The one who teaches you how to make prank phone calls and will use the word “fart” in a game of hangman.
She taught me all the “mensch” things like never showing up to someone’s home for an event/dinner/whatever, without something for them. To always write thank you notes when someone gives a gift. She’s not a regular mom, she’s a cool mom. She’d never be caught dead in a sweater set from Chicco’s or Ann Taylor and rocks a black beater and skinny jeans pretty much every day. She’s probably the reason I don black nail polish and skull & cross bone tanks in the carpool line.
She’s hilarious and doesn’t even understand why we are laughing half the time. The things that come out of her mouth are sometimes hard to mentally prepare for, but also the best. Watching her go through an ugly divorce and surviving breast cancer showed me by example what a fighter looks like. She’ll hug me and let me cry if I’m at a low but in the same breath tell me to get my ass up and remember who I am – the little girl who pushed her way to the front of the group in a dance recital when I was like 4, because I wanted to be front and center.
One of the things I admire most about her is the fact that nobody keeps it realer than her. She tells it like it is and owns who SHE is, no matter what. You can’t rattle her and if she feels under attack she will defend herself, strike back and take you down.
There is nobody on the planet like her and I’m so glad she’s ours. Happy Mother’s Day Mom. We love the shit out of you!