Since I am taking a few days off due to some ankle issues (Peroneal Tendonitis) and because Mother's Day is coming up, I thought I'd use today to do a little tribute to my mom (I'll save the one for my wife until later in the week).
My mom, Mary Kay, may be the cutest lady on the planet. At 5'6" she dominates any room with her amazing personality. In college at the Y she was a Folk Dancer and traveled the world. Later, while my brother and I were still in Jr high and high school, she was a part of a song and dance company (all old friends from college). My senior year of high school we had a talent show and because she was a teacher there she and I did a 50s swing number that was, by far, the most popular number of them all. She has always exemplified fun and enjoyment. As the department head of the Special Ed dept at Jordan High School she always has her teachers doing fun things. For a few years she was even playing roller hockey with all the other teachers, keeping up and checking the boys at almost 60 years old. Since then she has graduated to other, more sensible activities.
Mary Kay has always loved to hike. Even when going on walks around town I can't keep up with her tiny frame. I don't know how those legs move so fast. Last year she wanted to start doing some Wasatch Peaks and then hit the Uinta's in the summer. I started by taking her up Grandeur Peak and then Sugarloaf, both easy, but with a lot of elevation gain. Below you can see her on the way up to Sugarloaf.
Then, in August, she joined along with me and Tyler (my 11 year old) and my step-dad Curt on an attempt of King's Peak, a 3 day, 30 mile (yes, 30 miles because we took the long way down) trek to Utah's tallest mountain. In perfect Mary Kay fashion she flew up the mountain without any problems. She carried her own pack, all of her own gear, didn't complain once, and was even making fun of the little boy scouts who seemed to be in agony carrying their heavy loads. So proud.
A few months ago a coworker and friend decided she wanted to run a half marathon. Without hesitation my mom joined in to support her. While a great walker and hiker, my mom has never been a runner. But with persistence and a good training plan she is now ready to do the Ogden Half Marathon in two weeks. My family will be up there with big signs and whistles to cheer her on. I'm even going to pace her and her friend the last few miles.
I'm so proud of my mom. I owe her everything. She has taught me so much in my life; how to be a gentleman and how to treat and respect women, how to be spiritually minded (she is always, always spiritually minded), and how to work hard and never give up on your goals. She has always supported my ridiculous adventures with an attitude of "of course you can do it". And above all things, she has loved me and supported me through everything I've had to go through in life. Without her I wouldn't be who I am today and I am so grateful that I get to see her as often as I do. I love you mom.