Now we’ve really seen it all…Just this month:
My mom would’ve been unable to fathom the devastation we bring upon ourselves. Me either.
My mom would by no means be described as a warm and fuzzy mom even though her professional and community world knew her this way. She ruled, I mean parented, with a “do as your told” and “speak when spoken to” mentality. Yet one day when we were talking about love she gave me perhaps her greatest shard of wisdom and allowed me insight into the woman she really was. She told me when picking a life partner that it didn’t matter to her if they were purple and had horns, if they loved and respected me and made me happy then they would be okay by her. I feel that way, have always felt this way, have raised my children to know this. How does this not translate to how we treat each other globally?
We also share the same physical story from head to toe. She had bad feet, I have bad feet. She had diverticulitis, I have diverticulitis. She had heart disease, I’ve had a heart attack. She was misunderstood in her marriage, I was misunderstood in mine (1st time around). She used to threaten punishment if every morsel of food on our plates was not eaten, I scolded my son with her exact words when he was 3 year old only to pick up the phone and call her immediately to tell her it happened! My mom made us do chores every Saturday from the time we were old enough to make our bed or dust a table and it was an upgrade to be able to iron dad’s handkerchiefs. When my children asked me if they could have an allowance and I asked what they intended to do with said allowance, they responded with “change the cat litter”, or “take out the garbage”. I informed them no one paid me to change the cat litter or take out the garbage so they would have to be much more creative. They, too, already did chores and soon recognized the importance of going above and beyond for their rewards in life. They were not born entitled, none of us are, to take and not give back. Can’t this translate to how we treat each other globally, politically, civically?
During menopause my mom would come home from work and after supper would retreat to her bedroom. No internet in those days and she was a mighty gamer (solitaire, etc!) as am I, and also LOVED sports. If you HAD to talk with mom during those pre-bedtime hours (and you better be bleeding or on fire because they were precious alone moments) you would inevitably find her with the football game on the TV, headphones over her ears listening to classical music, and a crossword puzzle on her lap. On any given evening in my life, Netflix will be on TV, my laptop will be, yes, on my lap, and my phone in my hand playing solitaire or words with friends. In contrast, Sundays were quiet. We ate together and played together. How does this not translate, well, if at all, today?
Most importantly, mom joined the Garden Club. Mom joined the Rural Health network. Mom played cards with girlfriends. Mom wrote letters and made phone calls to friends. She honored her civic duty and filled her time with things that pleased her. My dad didn’t understand her but she lead her life her way regardless. It’s my new life at mid life motto as well. Participating in the world we live in MUST translate to our children. MAKE that HAPPEN.
In the worlds of my mother and grandmother, the world is truly going to hell in a hand basket. But somehow we will survive, we will make change, we will carry on for our children and their children and in our monumental screw ups on this planet, hopefully we leave a mark that in some small way has a positive impact. I’ve become my mother. I hope my daughter gets to say that someday and like it as much as I do. THIS continues to translate well, and transcends generations. Thankfully.
If you’ve become just like your mom in mid life, hit me with a comment! I’d love to hear from you:)