I thought I should post a wee something for Mother's Day and so went looking for a quote that I felt fairly described my mother's and my own 'mothering philosophy', and so I chose this quote by Dorothy Canfield Fisher.
"A mother is not a person to lean on, but a person to make leaning unnecessary."
My wonderful sister inlaw Jane and I have had many, many discussions about motherhood over the years. We jointly Mothered our children each and every summer over the past 20-odd years. Some of my very best memories. Anyway, the most frequent and the most recent conversations have had to to with the importance of raising capable children.
If we want our children to be happy and do well, one of the best gifts a mother can give is that of teaching them how to take care of themselves so they can negotiate their way through this life with success and happiness. My friend Shelagh says, " you are only as happy as your least happy child." Truer words have never been spoken.
I can thank my mother for her no nonesense, approach in raising me. If something wasn't going my way, she simply told me to figure it out and address the problem. Her most well-worn quote is: "Look out for No. 1" which she would say whenever I may have been letting others get the best of me. "Put your shoulders back and stand tall!" is another fave and was said if she thought I needed to show more pride or improve my self-esteem.
And even though she is fairly militant about things and kept a house and her children so neat that she could have held and Open House any day of the week, she also has a very mischevous, playful side...as is evident early on in the photo of my Mom above!
It wasn't unusual for her to hide something under my sheets at the foot of my bed and lay in wait for me to crawl in for the night and yelp when my foot touched an unknown object which turned out to be a hairbrush or a rubber spider. She loved giving me a good scare every now and then. She once told me that her Grandmother loved to have the Grandkids over and play Blind Man's Bluff in her house at night. My mother loved this, as her Grandmother was great at giving them a fright.
And despite the fact that my Mom and I sometimes despised one another through most of my teenage years, every now and then when moods were dark and full of loathing, she would grab my hands and force me into an impromtu jive in the kitchen.
The other reasons I wanted to write this post today, were all the wonderful women I've had and have in my life. They have all played a role in educating me, inspiring me, and making me stronger. Oh, and plus I forgot to put a proper Mother's Day card in the mail for my Mom. Oops! SORRY MOM!
So, to my Mom (xxoo, love ya Mom!) and to all the women who are mothers, or who love like mothers...
Happy Mother's Day!