Monday, November 26, 2012

The language of Mom

Monday, November 26, 2012

Do you speak more than one language? How did you learn the additional languages?

I'd like to get off the beaten path a bit tonight as I answer those two questions. What do you automatically think of when asked if we speak another language? Yeah, me too... A language other than that of your home country, whether that be English, German, French, Japanese or any other written and spoken language. Well here's the thing... I truly believe there is another very unique and special language that I'd like to call Mom-speak. We all know what that is, but the amazing thing is, it's different for each and every one of us! How many other languages can boast of that power?

Let me give you a few examples of what Mom-speak sounds like to me, but before I do, let me share the most recent picture of her that was posted on Facebook by my niece right after Mom got a hair perm and manicure. Isn't she beautiful?!?

Ka-Mish-Shaaaronnnn!!! She'd say as she worked her way down the line of daughters... Kathy, Michelle, then me, Sharon. Gee Mom, can't you even remember who you're yelling at? Hah! Little did I know that the curse would follow and even with just one child I still do something similar, only now it's something more like just out and out calling her by one of the dogs names. Silly short-circuited brain cells!

There's another sound that Mom used to make as I was growing up. It's the sound of a thick leather belt being doubled back on itself and snapped to make a loud smack. That sound was like the two-minute warning and when it was heard we knew that at least one of us five kids was in trouble. We'd start out with our backs to the wall hoping not to be the recipient of a tanned hide and sometimes use our two minutes to plan and scheme. Mind you, she never really did any damage, but it only took one spanking to instill the fear of that belt and usually just the sound of it was enough to stop us in our tracks!

This next Mom-speak is really a smell, but to me it represents my mom, so it belongs in this discussion. Mom was a coffee drinker and Dad preferred tea, probably because she is German and he is English-Irish. To this day the aroma of instant coffee always reminds me of Mom. Sometimes I drink it just for the memories. I kind of compare it to the instant dry milk we always had growing up. Sometimes we were lucky and she'd mix it with some real milk, but usually it was Carnation Instant Milk straight up!

Not what you expected, huh? Well you should know by now that I don't have a good memory for words, but can think in pictures. Now add smells to that memory bank and I have more subject matter to draw from.

I wonder what my daughter will always remember about my Mom-speak?

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  1. Well, I have to say that coffee and Red Door perfume automatically make me think of you!!! :o) This was a wonderful post about Grandma. She cleans up quite nicely!

    1. Those were the two that I thought you might say. We still do the coffee thing every morning, but had to quit wearing that awesome Red Door perfume when I started attending so many scent-free meetings a few years ago. I hope to keep creating memories and start a new grandma-speak for future generations!


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