It is the month of Mother’s Day and although I’ve been writing and speaking recently about death and grief, what we can highlight this month is life and love! That’s what our mothers brought to us, taught us and sustained us with. Although this is the second Mother’s Day without my mother here in physical form, her spirit of kindness, care and generosity is always with me.
And I think back to my maternal grandmother who barely survived the Spanish flu epidemic of 1918, the loss of her husband, the Oklahoma Dust Bowl, which drove her west to the agricultural area of southern California to bring-up my mother alone working as a clerk in a drug store. My “Nanna” sewed all of my clothes growing up, and even made my High School Homecoming gown from a wedding dress pattern. But for graduation, she bought me a cashmere sweater and matching skirt. I was “over-the-moon” excited and still have them in my closet. Nanna modeled an intense perseverance and total commitment to making my life the best she possibly could.
I have two memories of my maternal great-grandmother who was Native American: one of her standing at the stove making turkey gravy in a cast-iron skillet, the other of her in the yard showing my sister how to milk a goat. The sense I gained from her was of being grounded, wise and purposeful.
I invite you to look back at the mothers in your life to see how they contributed to and helped create your values. Even if your mother was abusive or neglectful, I guarantee you that she was part of your training to be a Warrior for Love on the planet.
Many blessings to you on this Mother’s Day Month!