I thought it would be fitting on Mother's Day, to discuss what a lasting positive impact; a mother's actions can have on a son. In particular a grown son, who has so may fond memories of Rose Rossini.
Although my Mom passed away nearly eight years ago, I never seem to feel sad when I think about her. My memories of Mom continue to remind me of a very special person who represented the embodiment of positive energy that was cast down upon everyone who knew her. Mom led a simple life that was filled with intense love, affection and respect for others. She absolutely adored her own mother, who lived to age 93 and helped care for her daily. My grandmother lived close by with my uncle Mike, and Mom would visit her mother daily to tend to her needs with tender loving care. As difficult as it often becomes to care for elderly parents, my Mom and her brother would have never considered a nursing home for their own mother. Whatever extra effort it took to care for my grandmother, was performed with pride by Mom, as she displayed genuine love daily.
Along with Uncle Mike, Mom also shared a very close relationship with her three sisters. If I learned one very important lesson from watching my Mom in action during my lifetime, it would be that there were no limits to the effort she would put forth for those she loved. Too often we witness individuals who will not go out of their way for their family or friends. In contrast my Mom would gladly climb the highest mountain for her parents; her husband; her children; her grandchildren; and her brothers and sisters. In Mom's case you could throw her nephews, nieces, neighbors and friends into the mix of those she would go the extra mile for, with a smile. There was never a doubt that Rose Rossini would be there by your side, without ever asking her, when you were in need.
Life for Mom was not easy. Like so many of the "Greatest Generation" she lived through World War I, the Great Depression and World War II. She knew what it was like to work very hard for hourly wages. She was one of seven children who gladly gave up their entire paychecks to my grandfather, in order to manage their household of nine. In fact Mom followed this practice until she married at 28 years old. Can you even imagine that happening today? Mom proudly told me stories of how she worked overtime any chance she could, in order to surprise her father with a larger paycheck at the end of the week. Now that's a show of pride at its best!
Mom was always great with numbers and played the accountant role in our household. She always had to be prepared to deal with labor strikes and layoffs that might affect the jobs of her and my father. They were serious savers and knew how to stretch a dollar like a rubber band. Mom would have made a competent CFO at a public company, since she was an astute practitioner of fiscal responsibility. Nothing ever went to waste in our household and I have nothing but fond memories of living a comfortable and healthy childhood. Mom was a great cook and just loved to feed her family with all of our favorite meals. She made the greatest veal chops, which she purchased at the same butcher shop for 30 plus years. To this day this is still one of my favorite dishes.
Among all of Rose Rossini's qualities of being a wonderful daughter, mother, grandmother and sister, she was a great motivator. She knew how to bring out the best in others. Her expectations of those she loved were always high and she knew how to motivate her children and grandchildren to be the BEST they can be. She knew when to praise and knew when to set you back on track when you started drifting. She was the great cheerleader everyone needs to move ahead and accomplish worthy goals in life. However she didn't want to hear lame excuses for a lack of effort and performance. Mom always reminded you to finish whatever you start and "DO IT RIGHT OR NOT AT ALL!"
Another quality that Mom inspired others with was how she bounced back from every adversity. She endured the pains of numerous surgeries throughout her lifetime. She entered each surgery like the bravest of soldiers and worked diligently at post surgery therapy's to recover like a champion athlete who had to return to the field of play. Her surgeons were always amazed at her speed of recovery and she was an inspiration to all those who loved her.
In conclusion, Mom and I were great phone pals later in life. I made it a practice to call her from my cell phone on my way home from work every day. Our phone calls were so positive and very predictable. She always told me about all the great things about her life. She would remind me how wonderful her life was, regardless of how she felt. I always told her about the best parts of my day, even if I had a lousy day overall. We loved to remind each other about what was good about our lives. We always ended every call with words describing how much we loved each other. Rose Rossini truly enjoyed life and knew how to inspire others to do the same.