My mother would say that I inherited my love of shoes from her mother, my Nana.
But don't let her fool you. She's got a pretty nice collection, too.
I can remember walking in her high heels when I was little.
I remember the way she'd select what shoes went with what outfit as if it were second nature.
I wondered if I'd ever get to wear heels the way she did, with so much purpose and grace.
And then there were her earrings. She had dangly ones and pearl ones and diamond ones.
But there was one pair in particular that always caught my eye.
Small opals, her birthstone.
I'd admire them, eye-level with her dresser.
"Mama, one day when I have pierced ears, can I wear these?"
"Well, of course you can. One day." She'd say.
I can't tell you how many times I swooned over that response...
One day, I'd get to have my ears pierced like hers.
When I was a bit older I loved to hear her tell the story of her roommates in college piercing each others ears by numbing them with ice and then holding a slice of apple to the back of the lobe and piercing away.
"Mama! You didn't have your ears done like that, did you?!"
I loved that story.
A little time has passed now.
I wore my first pair of heels the very minute I could walk straight in them and I got my ears pierced when I was eleven.
I am greatful for this: I have a mother who always made me feel like a gift, not a burden.
She worked full time outside the home and yet she always had time for me.
My memories with her stretch far beyond shoes and jewelry (although don't underestimate their importance).
She's the one I run to with news, good or bad or happy or sad.
She's the one I talk books with... even ones about vampires.
Although I think I lost her when I said, they're the good vampires... they only eat animals.
She's the one I can talk with until 4am and still have topics untouched.
She's the one who let me walk around in her heels telling me one day I'd have my very own.
She's kind and funny and talented and wise and lovable and smart and elegant and beautiful.
She's been my mama all these years and when I look back, I realize, she's always been my best friend, too.
Happy Mother's Day, Mama.
I'm really thankful to be your daughter.
Thank you for being my friend.
Oh and thank you for letting me wear your shoes.