Whenever someone asks me what my wife is like as a mother, I just reply, "It's like watching Michael Jordan go to work in the fourth quarter." As someone who relies on sports analogies to make sense of life, it's the highest compliment I'm capable of paying another human being. The woman is amazing, always has been, but her Mom game is off the charts.
After a sleepless night in the hospital where my wife did all the heavy lifting, our daughter came into the world screaming like a banshee. If I weren't paralyzed with exhaustion and fear, all I would've known to do was scream right back at her. Fortunately our doctor had the sense to hand her off to my wife, who immediately in the calmest voice imaginable starts saying, "I know, I know… it's OK." It looked like she'd been ready for that her entire life. In the days that have ensued, it's been more of the same.
As time has gone on my friends have welcomed their own little ones, I've found that the Michael Jordan analogy holds up exceptionally well. "It's just like being a member of the '96 Bulls," my friend Jay observed of his own wife and son, independent of my own analogy. "Just play defense, rebound, and get the ball to the G.O.A.T. (Greatest of All Time) in crunch time."
I'm sad to say that I was too busy being an ungrateful little turd along with my two brothers to fully appreciate my own mother's innate maternal abilities when they were action as we were growing up. Fortunately, when I look back on my life there are plenty of context clues I can use to deduce that my own Mother was (and remains) one of the best in the biz when our childhood shenanigans were at their peak.
As a toddler, I was so well-fed my family nickname became "pork barrel." Coming from a home where there was never so much as a soda or cereal with more sugar than Cheerios lying around the house, I can deduce it's because Mom had me binge-eating love in vegetable and dairy form.
I emerged from my childhood with my self-esteem intact, despite my older brother having an arsenal of emotional grenades at his disposal (like my early days as "pork barrel"). To make that happen, my Mom had to be equipped with the motivational toolbox of Mickey Goldmill with the tenderness of a top notch filet in order to pull me out of there alive.
This one I did appreciate in real-time: embarrassing notes on the napkin at lunch every day, well into middle school. I hid them from my friends like the notes on my hand for the math test, but they always made me feel like I was the luckiest kid in the cafeteria.
And while we're here, it's worth pointing out that she took the time to make me lunch instead of making me eat that watered down nonsense in the cafeteria. As my schedule gets busier, I can't help but realize what a sacrifice/labor of love packing three lunches for over a decade must have been.
I could rattle off dozens more, but I think what I'm getting at is that a single day to celebrate Mothers and all the things they do seems terribly insufficient. And it is. How can we possibly express our gratitude to the women who not only give life, but also spend all the time since then making that life worth living?
We may be biased, but at Perrotti's, we're inclined to believe that nothing shows appreciation quite like a home-cooked meal. Can't cook? We've got you covered. Grab some eggplant parmigiana, chicken francaise, or whatever your own Mother would like from our prepared foods menu and serve it up for dinner on Sunday night. You have our permission to tell Mom you made it from scratch, strictly according to her recipe. Make her believe it, like that time you told her the beer in the trunk belonged to your friend. Or don't... your choice.
But whatever you do, make sure you don't sit down to eat before you leave an embarrassing note on her napkin.