Well, today on Mother’s Day I will be moving away from my mother. I have lived nearby – in the same state that is – since I moved away from home to go to college eight years ago.
For a new job, I’m headed to Arizona, which oddly is the state of my birth. I was born in Phoenix in August on a day when the temperature had reached 104.
My mother raised my brother and I alone for the first 10 years of my life. She shaped who we are. My father’s absence also shaped me. But hang on – he taught me to read himself when I was 3 years old, which since I make my life as a reporter, also transformed me.
My mother has gone through many changes. Of course.
Mary Gayle Anderson, who never married my and my brother’s father (and would laugh in your face if you tried to make anything of that) always has gone by Gayle. Growing up in the South, she said, every other girl was a Mary Jo, Mary Beth, Mary Jane. So she became a Gayle.
An accomplished trombonist, she graduated from LSU with a music degree. Thus followed years of travel and a strong urge to head west – or anywhere that wasn’t the South. She ended up in airplane insurance and with an enduring love of music. So she loved when I got into Guns N’ Roses and Metallica. (Actually, she liked most of them.)
She became Mary Gayle Anderson Charlesworth on July 4, 1984. Married in England, that day signified her independence in this way – she could legally make money.
The intervening years would take too long to relate here. And this is not meant to be an examination of her life. Hopefully this will not be the most poetic post here for Mother’s Day. I am typing this just a few minutes before I head off to bed. I Oddly, I am spending this last night under my parent’s roof
In sum, I want to thank her for turning out a couple of fine men; not alone of course. She is so kind to us. Gayle remains slightly unsettled herself and perhaps this is due to the one dream herself she has not yet completed.
As well as glee, I feel guilty about moving away. But it turned out that way. On Mother’s Day.