This picture of my mom qualifies as a glamour shot in my book. I think it is her high school senior portrait, but to me she looks like a movie star. Mom always had an inner beauty but in this photograph it shines straight through and comes out as physical beauty. She's gorgeous and not just because she's my mom. There's something of a young Elizabeth Taylor about her -- all pale skin and dark hair and soft shoulders.
This picture is rivaled only by one from her wedding day. In it, she is in the back seat of the wedding car. We see her in profile while my dad looks at her with pride and love like I've never seen on his face. And it's no wonder when, even in profile, my mother glows with such hope for the future.
I wonder if marriage was a disappointment. My dad couldn't have been the Prince Charming he seemed that day. I know from my time at home he wasn't. He wasn't an ogre, but he certainly wasn't a prince. But still, pictures of her holding her newborns show a beaming smile full of pride. Later pictures of her with her grandchildren show a similar happiness.
Her children and grandchildren were obviously a source of joy. She wanted to be a teacher but wasn't allowed because her father didn't believe college was for girls (thank goodness my parents didn't feel the same way). She would have been a great teacher. She was a great teacher in her way. Many things I learned from her I didn't realize until much later. Chief among them is how to care about other people.
Happy Mother's Day, Mom.