Today is Mother’s Day. We celebrate our own moms and moms everywhere. I have a great mom. She loves her family, my sister and me, and she certainly is a proud grandmother as well. She isn’t perfect. But she is a true friend, a good listener, and is always fair in all she does. She is a giver. Like me, she is sometimes quick to judge, but isn’t afraid to change her mind if she feels she is wrong. She is quick to apologize. I think in her large family she would be considered the peacemaker.
My mom also had a wonderful mother. I called her Ma. She was an only child who married a domineering man 12 years older than her and then raised 13 children of her own. They started out married life in western Oklahoma living in a house built into a side of a hill and it had dirt floors. She once told me that when her first two boys were little she would lift up the legs on the end of the bed and set it down on their dressing gowns to keep them from crawling off and getting into trouble while she hung out the wash (or warsh as she would say). She wasn’t perfect in the way she raised all her children, but she did the best she could with what she knew. I can’t even fathom raising 13 children, but she did. They all loved and cherished her. She was quick to lend a hand, listen to your problems, and enjoy a laugh with you.
Some mothers fall into other categories. My dad was raised by his grandparents and his Uncle Mack. I’m not sure how old he was when he went to live with them. But he was young, very young. His parents were alcoholics. His two sisters married at very young ages and he had a younger brother that drowned in Lake Grapevine. That little boy had a sad existence. While my grandparents were out honky tonking he was left home alone. He would go next door and knock on the neighbor’s door because he was hungry. When I was still a baby my grandparents divorced. I never new THIS woman who was my Dad’s mother. The woman I knew as Nanny, just wasn’t this woman. My memories of her are filled with love and good memories. My Dad loved his mother. He once told me that the best thing his mother ever did for him was to let him live with his grandparents. Holidays at my Nanny’s house were warm and loving. For my birthday every year she would make me a devil’s food cake with seven minute frosting. I miss that. People do make mistakes and atone for their transgressions and errors in judgment. I remember her as a loving grandmother.
I never had any children of my very own. My husband has a daughter, Lindsey. She was just a long legged, freckled faced little girl with a long mane of thick auburn hair when I first met her. Now she is a grown married, sweet, beautiful, young lady. I have two nieces and two nephews who have been a part of my life since their births. For all five of these children, now all adults, I would drop what I’m doing at any moment, at any time of the day or night to be there for them.
I don’t know if nurturing is something that is learned or if you are born that way. I do know from reading the newspapers, watching the news, and even listening to some parents talk to their children in the store, that not everyone is nurturing. Children should be cherished and loved. They are true innocents. Sure they will need instruction, correction, and direction. Above all they should be treasured, because they are gifts