Mother's Day Revisited
I've been thinking more about Mother's Day. Last week I wrote, mostly out of anger about war and mothers being asked to send their children off to fight. This week I've been thinking about the happy and sad aspects of Mother's Day for me.
The sad part is that my mother died in 1989 so I can no longer celebrate with her, honor her, or share my life with her. I miss my mom and wish I could tell her about my life and about her grandchildren. I wish I could tell her how much more I've appreciated her parenting since I've been a mother. Now I better understand the gap between what I wish I could do as a mother and what I have actually been able to do. That perspective has replaced a lot of the criticisms I had as a teenager!
I have great appreciation for what my mother brought to my life. She instilled in me a strong sense of social justice and the need to take action. My caring about people and treating people with respect for their inherent worth and dignity were enhanced by watching my mother care and interact with people so respectfully.
And my happiness at being a mother. I know parenting is not for everyone and some people struggle to become parents. I feel grateful to have my two children in my life. As my daughter prepares to go to college this fall and my son is completing his first year of college, I will find myself with a different set of parenting responsibilities. I'm looking forward to that change with my both excitement and some worry as to what it will be like.
As I watch my children go through their lives I am so pleased, and able to feel I must have done at least a few good things in parenting them. They are each wonderful, caring people who are fully engaged with the world and I think the world is better for their being in it.
I'm looking forward to spending Mother's Day with them, pleased they'll join me for the peace vigil and we'll have some time together. I like being my kids' mother.
What does Mother's Day bring for you?
Submitted by SusanRose on Sat, 2008-05-10 13:57.
On Mother's Day, the local museum is hosting a family day if hands-on art events for the children. Various organizations involved with nontraditional families -- e.g. interracial families, adoptive families -- have been invited to set up tables at the event. My PFLAG chapter was invited to set up a table.
I thought, "What better way to spend Mother's Day than fulfilling my responsibility as a mother?", so I will be one of the people staffing the table. I told my daughter and her partner-- both very hard-working activists-- that the best gift they could give me would be to sleep late for a change! ;)
Mom's words of wisedom I carry with me today
Submitted by SusanRose on Sat, 2008-05-10 13:58.
It's funny how the little things my Mom would say to me will pop up as even more relavant long after the time they were meant. When she sent me off to elementry Schol she would kiss me (leaving Bright pink lips on my check) and say 'Ask Lots of Questions.It only took one ribbing for me to remember every morning to wipe the kiss mark off my cheek before I hit the bus stop,nor have I forgotten that there is always more to the story and should always ask more questions from the teller. Invalueable considering todays media coverage.
At about the same age, a friend and I were riding double (I on the front fender) when two boys tried to take the bike from us. I punched one of them and we 'escaped'. although my fther 'taught' all us girls to box, fighting was a 'no no' , I cried and confessed to my Mother I ahd Hit a boy. Seh smiled an dlaughed and said 'You have every right to defend yourself'. In my '20's two guys at a party tried to asasult me- I escaped but only to be taunted once back amongst my group of friends,'She loved loved every minute'- I broke his nose with a left hook (thanks Mom & Dad!)He never expected it, never saw it coming and never bothered me again!
After I moved to Califoria on my 24 and there is so much more Advaenture- things got tough financially. I discussed my living situation dilemma with my mother by phone. Her words'You always have options, you just have to figure out what they are'.I could write a dissertation on how many times that has helped me and inspired me throughout my life.
There have been many more little words of wisedom my mother, who never makes claim to her own level of intellegence and insight , has given me and everytime one of thee or another pops up in my head, in her voice, I Thank her. Her response is always "I said That?"
Submitted by SusanRose on Wed, 2008-05-14 21:45.
Susans's comments were deeply moving for me.
Because of personal ties, of course. Also because I've lived what she's talking about myself. Seeing my sons into adulthood, and beginning to know my grandsons is an important part of what I know as the "holy". "Wholeness", actually. And I owe my reverence for these wonderful experiences very much to my own mother who died almost a year ago. Her excellent parenting, and her deep connection with her grandchildren will always shape me and my sons. Even more important was her openness to letting me and my family live out life choices very different than hers. And doing this with grace and love. Thank you Mom. Profoundly!