When God Created Mothers

by Erma Bombeck (May 12, 1974)

When the Good Lord was creating mothers, He was into his sixth day of “overtime” when an angel appeared and said, “You’re doing a lot of fiddling around on this one.”

And the Lord said, “Have you read the specs on this order?

  • She has to be completely washable, but not plastic;
  • Have 180 movable parts… all replaceable;
  • Run on black coffee and leftovers;
  • Have a lap that disappears when she stands up;
  • A kiss that can cure anything from a broken leg to a disappointed love affair;
  • And six pairs of hands.”

The angel shook her head slowly and said, “Six pairs of hands… no way.”

“It’s not the hands that are causing me problems,” said the Lord. “It’s the three pairs of eyes that mothers have to have.”

“That’s on the standard model?” asked the angel.

The Lord nodded. “One pair that sees through closed doors when she asks, ’What are you kids doing in there?’ when she already knows. Another here in the back of her head that sees what she shouldn’t but what she has to know, and of course the ones here in front that can look at a child when he goofs up and say, ’I understand and I love you’ without so much as uttering a word.”

“Lord,” said the angel, touching His sleeve gently, “Go to bed. Tomorrow…”

“I can’t,” said the Lord, “I’m so close to creating something so close to myself. Already I have one who heals herself when she is sick… can feed a family of six on one pound of hamburger… and can get a nine-year-old to stand under a shower.”

The angel circled the model of a mother very slowly. “It’s too soft,” she sighed.

“But she’s tough!” said the Lord excitedly. “You cannot imagine what this mother can do or endure.”

“Can it think?”

“Not only can it think, but it can reason and compromise,” said the Creator.

Finally, the angel bent over and ran her finger across the cheek. “There’s a leak,” she pronounced. “I told You You were trying to push too much into this model.”

“It’s not a leak,” said the Lord. “It’s a tear.”

“What’s it for?”

“It’s for joy, sadness, disappointment, pain, loneliness, and pride.”

“You are a genius,” said the angel.

The Lord looked somber. “I didn’t put it there,” He said.


In life,  I have been blessed with two mothers- one who loved me into being, and one who welcomed me as a daughter in her family when I married her son. 

My mom was everything I wanted to be, growing up.  Loving, expressive, and caring, she was (and still is) my idea of a great mother.  I was nurtured by her love and her dreams. She gave me wings and trusted me with the freedom to be whoever I wanted to be. Today, I find that despite appearances (I still look more like my dad than my mom), I have actually grown up to be a lot like her.  And for that, I am thankful.   

Mommy Flora, my husband’s mom, is no longer with us. Five years ago, on a sweltering Mother’s Day much like this, we laid her to rest. Even now, years after she has gone, I find myself often dreaming of her. When I am sad or worried, I always find comfort in the last words she ever said to me: “Do you know I love you?” God, I miss her still.

Thank you, Lord, for these amazing women. Bless them always. Theirs, indeed, is the sweetest kind of love.

11 thoughts on “When God Created Mothers

  1. just in case you didn’t hear it the first 2,346,453,678 times i we greeted you yesterday: happy mothers day 😀

    • I did, thanks. And we are made to spec, heehee. Guess that’s why fathers are most fascinated with us mothers. 🙂

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