My Mom & the New England Patriots

Lilacs
Lilacs, my favorite flower. I used to pick them for my mom on Mother’s Day. Image via
CC BY-SA 3.0

We are a blog about geeky motherhood, so you would think that we’d have a lot to say on Mother’s Day.

But it didn’t occur to me until today, the day before Mother’s Day, that our site should do something special honoring mothers.

Why not?

Because instead of sitting down to write, I was distracted and busy doing all the things I need for my family and career. An ode to motherhood was the last thing on my mind. If I thought about Mother’s Day, I was focused on a question my husband asked: what do you want to do Sunday? I’m still indecisive on that one. Will all the kids be happy with my choice? Indoor or outdoor? Food choices that suit everyone? Will what I want to do fit our household budget?

Or maybe I’m just tired. One more thing to plan is beyond me.

I suspect this is true of many of our GeekMom writers and mothers in general.

But then I realized that I’ve already celebrated Mother’s Day the way I want by wrapping up my presents for my mother and sending them off.

Why? That’s a story that relates back to February and the SuperBowl between the New England Patriots and Atlanta Falcons.

This winter was particularly difficult for our family. My mother had health issues. And my younger son had a severe gastrointestinal infection called c-diff. (You can look it up. Everything about c-diff is 1. terrifying and 2. gross.)

Which meant that my younger son and I watched the SuperBowl together in the hospital.

He’s the only one of my kids who watches NFL football with me. It’s our special thing. He was still feeling poorly, so I was hoping a Patriots victory would cheer him up a bit because, yes, the Evil Empire is our team.  (And we’re still bitter about Brady’s suspension but that’s another story.)

During the game, I was texting my mom because she was worried about my son. Now, my mom had zero interest in sports when I was growing up, though she supported my own interest in sports. At the time, I was disappointed she didn’t share my interests but now I can see, especially as a single mom, how busy she was, how many things she had to juggle with three kids, and how little time she had for hobbies.

She’s retired now and she’s moved to the Boston-area. She has time now. And my young nephews are sports crazy because Boston is a sports-crazy town. For the first time, my mom is a sports fan. All the Boston teams. Red Sox. Patriots. Bruins. Celtics. This cracks me up because she pays more attention to sports now than I do, especially for the Red Sox. Because she has the time to watch a three-hour baseball game several days a week and, well, I don’t.

Back to the Superbowl. My son was bummed at the score, which was 28-6 in the third quarter. So much for cheering him up, I thought, because we were toast. I’ve been watching football for 40 years now. I knew how hopeless a Patriots victory was at that point. So I texted my mom that the game was effectively over.

She texts back: It’s not over. We have Brady!!

I thought “how, cute, she doesn’t know that a comeback from this score has never happened in the entire history of the SuperBowl.” So I replied, “Doesn’t look good, though.” Why? Because not only did Brady has to drive his offense to score fast but the defense had to stop the Falcons from scoring and, thus far, they’d had no luck doing that. Brady might be amazing but if the defense couldn’t hold the score, the Patriots were toast.

And, well, you know what happened. The Patriots scored once. Two-score game. The defense stepped up, particularly Donta Hightower. Then another Patriots score and a two-point conversation. Overtime. Patriots win.

At that point, I called her and she said: “I told you, we had Brady!” Hah.

So her Mother’s Day present?

New England Patriots Hoodie, image via NFL shop.

One New England Patriots championship t-shirt, one New England Patriots championship hoodie. I also found a card with lilacs on it, as a replacement for the lilac I used to pick her as a kid for Mother’s Day from the bushes that grew near our house. The card has the advantage of not having little ants hidden in them.

As I write this, she hasn’t opened the gifts yet. (No fear of giving the surprise away, she’s rarely on the internet.)

But my hope is that the gift brings her back to that night, where we bonded for the first time over sports, and where I, who knew all about football, was wrong, and she, a new fan who didn’t know anything about how impossible that comebacks was, was right.

And, in the end, I think that’s what most mothers want for Mother’s Day. Not flowers or chocolate or jewelry or dinners (though those are nice) but a memory like that to hold close.

As a mom, that’s not so easy quantity when asked: “What do you want for Mother’s Day?”

Which is no doubt why I’m still stumped about my answer. But all four are home and healthy and that’ll be plenty.

Writer, Mom, Geek and Superhero. though usually not all four on the same day. Author of the award-winning Phoenix Institute Superhero series and the steampunk novel, The Curse of the Brimstone Contract.