Lorraine Mobley: Moms who stand by their kids


Published: Sunday, May 12, 2013 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Friday, May 10, 2013 at 3:44 p.m.

Every day on my route to work here in Gainesville, I pass by multiple bus stops with all aged children waiting for school buses. Many times, each child is engrossed in their own iPod, iPad, cell phone or other form of technology (for all they know texting the kid standing right next to them).

Most of the time they are not even making any eye contact with each other. It seems that the advanced forms of technology have limited the ability for kids and adults alike to actually talk to each other at the bus stop or in any other social setting for that matter.

About at the halfway mark to my work place there is something I see daily at one particular bus stop and have noted it to be the case on every school day for the past two years. Standing amidst the pool of 9- to 16-year-old-looking kids is one girl (who looks about 14) standing with her mother.

At least I assume it is her mother. The mother always looks pleasant enough; sometimes she is talking with the girl but most days just standing next to her. The teenager is not on a cell phone, iPod or iPad and usually she stands with her arms crossed and that look of mortification that I, as a mom of a 21-year-old, an 18-year-old and an 11-year-old can recognize even at 45 mph as whizzing by. As if she is thinking OMG! Why does my mom have to stand here with me?!

Now, I do not know the story of this girl and her mother. I do not know if they have a good or bad relationship. I do not know if the teen has a history of “missing the bus” or truancy. I do not know if the girl has special needs or is bullied. Heck, I don’t know a thing about these two other than their consistent stance every morning.

What I do know is that most mothers I know, including myself (I am ashamed to admit) would be perfectly willing to go back to bed or have a cup of coffee or race out the door to work or somewhere else after showing the teenager out the door towards the direction of the bus stop. Obviously, it should be safe to do so and the girl looks old enough to manage the task.

With this in mind I say, “Good for you, Mom at the bus stop!” You are there for your child for all of us that either cannot be or choose not to be. You don’t care how uncool it is to have your mom at the bus stop! You are there every day, rain or shine, arms of that daughter tightly crossed showing how much she does not want you there.

I applaud your effort and your confidence to stand there, available to talk to your child and others instead of letting them ignore each other for those precious few years we have with them.

To you and all other moms (and single dads who are also moms) who literally, spiritually and emotionally stand by their kids, whether it’s cool or not, whether they want you there or not, whether they are good kids or not I extend a very happy Mother’s Day!

One day those kids with crossed arms and stink eyes will turn into adults with outstretched arms and tear-filled eyes that thank you from the bottom of their heart for being there. Keep standing!

Lorraine Mobley lives in Gainesville.

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