Remembering How Mother Influenced My Childhood

Mary Ann Harris on shore with Leslie

Photo Arranged by Laurie Harris

My Mom Signed Me Up

 by Laurie Harris

Recently, I saw a dear lady who was a leader of a co-ed scout group that I was involved in during my youth. After seeing her I began to reflect on the many fun activities I was involved in as I grew up and all because of the love and care of my mom. I was a rather shy, insecure, and lacked social skills from elementary to high school. Because of this fact and being the oldest I just wasn’t very aware of additional activities outside the safe haven of my home. Even if I was, I wouldn’t have taken much of an initiative to be a part of them. In an effort to help me learn to socialize and just to give me a broader perspective of life my mom signed me up. She didn’t just sign me up for any ‘ol thing but rather took into perspective what interested me which had a lot to do with outdoors and singing. I played softball, joined Camp Fire Girls (mom joined too, aka a leader), participated in church groups, rolled into a monthly skating group, spent summers at camp, tried out the school band but found my heart’s passion was singing in choirs. And as I mentioned I enjoyed hiking and canoeing with a co-ed scout troop. When I think on those times, there is a restful contentment of memories that washes over me with a heart full of gratitude towards my mom. She did not force her hand but rather made suggestions that I might like it. She knew me well and found things that fit me. I not only grew in social skills but also learned about things that interested me more than others. I gained confidence, knowledge and an appreciation for many things and the desire to continue in activities through my own initiative. It never occurred to me those many years ago to thank her for all the fun I had, for helping me to become acquainted with more than my family circle, for being the kind of mom that cares about my quality of life. . .for giving this little bird a gentle push out of the nest that could have easily become for me a lifetime cave of hibernation. My mom has not only been there for me but she got me out there… for me and I am grateful.

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