Sunday, May 8, 2011

Happy Mother's Day from the Home (water)Front

I haven't posted photos of our waterfront for ages, have I? I thought it was time to remind myself of the blessings right here at home, even though the skies are grey. And wet. And cold.

Appreciating what's right in front of one's eyes, at home, appreciating the peace that can be found where I live, seems a fitting sentiment for Mother's Day. One is truly blessed if home and peace can coincide.
 I'm off to phone my mother now -- she was so cute last week, when I caught her just as she was cooking up a liver-and-onions meal for a friend. Mom didn't have to cook for ten years after Dad died, because my sister and her family moved in with her (a blessing for all, until it wasn't), and she's only tentatively begun cooking again since she's been in her condo the last 18 months. With the mild cognitive impairment (MCI) she's been experiencing, she generally has to be prompted even to offer tea when we visit, although she then nicely musters up a choice of cookies as well. And although she's forced herself to join a walking group and has made quite a few acquaintances and even a few friends that she sees almost daily, her deep innate shyness, coupled with her anxiety about her forgetfulness, means that she rarely invites anyone to her apartment.

So I could tell she was nervous about having Sadie in for dinner. And I was touched to see her thoughtfulness and her nurturing emerge when Sadie confided that liver and onions was a favourite meal from her childhood.  Apparently Sadie, for whatever reason, couldn't manage to cook this properly, and Mom knew herself to be quite capable, at least theoretically, since she'd managed it nicely many, many times (not always to an appreciative audience, liver and onions not being your average kids' favourite weeknight dinner!).  Because of the encroaching MCI, Mom has been a receiver rather than a giver more often than not over the last few years. And while she's earned this many times over (and while there are certainly exceptions -- mention that you like her brooch and there's a good chance you'll be wearing it home, especially if you're a grand-daughter!) . . . I love to see evidence that the nurturing Mother of my childhood is still there. And I know that the Giving makes her feel just as good as the Receiving.
It's a funny thing about blogging -- when I started this post, I thought I'd put up these pictures signifying, for me, home and peace, blessings I receive as a mother, and wish you might all find these together as well, on Mother's Day. Those middle paragraphs about my mother just arrived. I'll let them stand, if you don't mind. I'm sure you'll spend part of the day thinking about your own Mother as well and her confrontation, perhaps, with old age.

But I'd be remiss if I didn't add to that musing the richness that is watching one's own child become a mother. My eldest, Bronwen, is doing such a wonderful job with our charming Nola, and I wish her a Happy Mother's Day as well.

And I've come back to add a little note: My daughter-out-of-law, Joey, was the first one to call and wish me a Happy Mother's Day this morning, completely independent of her partner, my son. She called early, on her way to work, and she reminded me of how much my children's partners have enriched my life and made me an even happier mother.  And reminded me that I've also been blessed with a loving mother-in-law, whom we will be calling shortly. Thanks, Joey -- love you!

To all of you then, Mothers and Mother-ed, a Happy Mother's Day. May Home and Peace be one for you!


  1. Happy mothers day mom!!! Love love love you.

  2. Mater your post is wonderful.

    I love the unexpected thoughts of your mom creeping into that idyllic and peaceful water scene.

    Happy Mother's Day!

    I could never enjoy liver and onions either...

  3. Happy Mothers' Day to you!

    I'm glad your mom is able to still enjoy some degree of independence, and able to do those things that give her some satisfaction and feeling of accomplishment.

    You post reminds me, need to call my step-mom.

  4. That's sweet, hearing about your mum.

    My children and my son's sweetie surprised me with a nice long visit yesterday. There was a lot of laughter!

  5. What a beautiful post. I rang my mother last night, a tad reluctantly, but we managed to have a long conversation with her insulting/undermining me just the once (possibly a record) ...

  6. Thanks, Meg -- love you lots, sweetie!
    Hostess: I wouldn't put them on my top ten list, that's for sure. . .
    Pseu: That independence is so important, isn't it? I pray I'll be able to manage some at the end of my days.
    Susan: That laughter with your young ones is such a reward!
    Thanks, Patricia -- hope you had a lovely Mother's Day, although I know it will have had its sad moments for you.
    Tiffany: We take the good stuff when/where we find it, right? Too bad she can't do better, but at least you offer her the opportunity and sometimes she takes it. Happy Belated Mother's Day

  7. So whilst the whole planet celebrates, we just watch since our Mother's day is linked to the Easter calendar.
    But I love the sentiment and I too loved visiting my Gran for some seriously trad' food, when I was younger and yes even as a child loved the taste and texture of liver!
    Love our photographic snap, trust you to find the mural I think it's by the graffiti artist Ben Flynn. Check him out via Google. I like to think London does a better class of grafitti!!

  8. Alison: That must be the artist! Certainly, he's got the alphabet letters down pat -- wish I'd got a better shot of the "Don't hate on Kate" I spotted over towards Shoreditch -- the letters were all Union-Jacked, and it was also wall-sized.

  9. Your comments about your children's partners brought tears to my eyes. As women we know what it takes to be a mother and it is a place of eternal bonding. I'm an old mother - meaning, I had my children rather late in life, I can only hope to see them become parents and witness that amazing awaking. Lovely post.

  10. Watching my adult children (such a weird phrase, so telling that the English language doesn't offer a better word) "partner up" and now becoming partners is a joy I couldn't full have anticipated when I was younger. We've been truly blessed -- they've all got partners I would be proud to have raised myself, lovely, lovely people, fun, bright, caring, and loyal.

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