Badasses & Birthday Celebrations

I still remember the day my mother-in-law looked across the front seat of her car at me and uttered words that made me blink. Granted, I was only dating her son then, but still, her opinion of me mattered.

“You’re a stubborn person”

I wanted to put my hand to my chest and say, “Moi?” Instead, I found myself blinking owlishly at her, wondering where our conversation was about to go. She must have sensed my unease because she looked over at me, let out a light laugh and patted my leg.

“That’s not necessarily a bad thing, you know…”

I bit my lip and wondered if I should respond. Curiosity won out. “What makes you say that?”

“I’m well aware your family doesn’t exactly approve of your relationship. Most people find it easier to break up and start over…to try to find someone they would approve of, but not you. You know who and what you want and you won’t let anyone dictate who you do or don’t date. Not even your family. Considering how close you guys are, that’s saying something.” She shrugged. “See? Stubborn.”

That conversation has always stood out in my mind because I’ve always felt it was a trait we shared. She’s one of the most loving, accepting people I know…and a lot to live up to. This wonderful woman was riding horses and teaching aerobics classes in the fellowship room of her church into her 60’s. She’s been completely supportive and accepting of me… in fact, while we lived in Chicago, Saturday nights and Tuesday nights became our hang out time. Saturday evening was dinner with the ‘rents, followed by Mom and me watching The Pretender and Profiler together. Tuesday nights were reserved for Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Charmed. Hubby would either be watching college football or playing Warcraft or Diablo or sometimes he’d join us. I think he got a kick out of how close we’d become, but acceptance seemed to be a family theme…at least with me.

Hubby's (right before her 80th birthday)

Hubby’s mom…zip-lining (right before her 80th birthday)


There are times I miss those days… Miss not living close enough where we can just jump into a car and go. This weekend has been one of those times. She’s an awesome woman with a great spirit… A sense of joy in life and adventure that she shares with her son….whose birthday is only 1 day before hers. Yes, my husband was her birthday gift to herself….well, with the help of her husband. 😉

This weekend was their birthdays….but hers was a landmark. That daring woman zip-lining in that picture above? Well, she did that a couple months before her 80th…which she celebrated yesterday.

Hubby asked me to write a poem on his behalf…honoring her…and I did my best to do it justice. No, I’m not sharing it here…it was solely for her. But, I wanted to share HER with you guys… She’s the badass I strive to become as I get older! And she gave me an awesome man (who IS accepted and loved by my family, by the way… it just took my mom time). I guess that stubbornness she accused me of paid off! 🙂

So, happy birthday to them both…with a wish for many more. (Yeah, I know…birthdays and anniversaries galore for me in September.)

Hubby & me at Trump Tower in Chicago

Hubby & me at Trump Tower in Chicago


34 thoughts on “Badasses & Birthday Celebrations

    • Kitt Crescendo says:

      True… And I didn’t mean to make it come off as a complete character defect…Just a bit surprised she noticed. In fact, until she’d said something I just considered the fact that it was my life…and I was going to live it to the fullest. In the end, the only one who can answer for our actions is us.

      Used properly it can be a great asset. Doing it simply for spite rather than “in spite of” is when it often becomes a flaw.


    • Kitt Crescendo says:

      Thanks! She’s really awesome. I totally did not expect her to be into shows like Buffy and Charmed (and Supernatural) but she loves that stuff as much as I do! Hubby actually gets his love of horror flicks from her. LOL!


  1. ramblingsfromamum says:

    Though I’m not into radical sports… I so admire mum-in-law for zip-lining as you call it at her age. This is how I want to be.. though the dare devil is not really me. Living life and choosing what to do, not giving a toss of what others think of you. Happy Birthday to both of you, live strong – live hard – live long! 🙂 x


    • Kitt Crescendo says:

      Ah, but choosing to live life on your own terms is just another form of bada$$ery. 😉 My grandmother slipped and broke her hip country line dancing in her late 70’s and I thought that was pretty cool, too…because she was living life to her own version of “the fullest”. 🙂


  2. Gloria Richard Author says:

    I admire everything you describe about this woman. She epitomizes the refrigerator magnet I saw about age.

    How old would you be if you didn’t know your age?

    My husband (the pessimist) bemoans his advanced years, adds years to his age in I-am-almost comments beginning four years before the milestone birthday, and lives in “what’s left?” mentality. “I’d like to go to Hawaii one more time before I die. I’d like to visit Banff one more time before I die.”

    Thank goodness I learned to LALALALALALALALA fingers-in-ears through those verbalizations.

    BONUS! Once he gets his “one more time,” I’ll be able to go by myself and really kick up some sand/pine needles (respectively).

    Do I feel sorry for him and wish he had a positive outlook? Sure. Do I struggle to change his attitude? Nope. Not anymore. God did not die and put me in charge of him. He put me (with His help) in charge of me.

    I look at life and think “what’s NEXT?” Sounds like your mother-in-law lives life the same way.

    LOVE stubborn and tenacious (with a hearty mix of impetuous and spontaneous and adventurous). You, my dear Kitt, have all of them.


    • Kitt Crescendo says:

      Gloria, you are so sweet! And I suspect you’d really enjoy my MIL.

      As for bemoaning age, you’re right. Life is way too short (and meant to be lived in the present, not with an eye of fear on the future).


  3. Kourtney Heintz says:

    Aw, it’s so awesome that you and your mom in law have such a terrific relationship. She sounds like one cool lady too. 🙂 Birthday wishes all around.


  4. filbio says:

    Zip Lining at 80 years old! God bless her. She sounds like a rip to hang around with. Happy birthday to both of these special people in your life!


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