Older woman smiling

I AM My Mother’s Daughter

The last time my mom and I were together was on December 10. The next morning, Shelly, Orchid and I left Chicago for our home in California. When we part, my mom and I never say “good-bye.” We say “so long.” Actually my mom is always with me because in most ways, I am my mother’s daughter!

I am reflecting on how we differ. I think it is important to take from our mothers what we love about their persona and toss aside what we don’t embrace. And I have.

My mom and I differ in three ways. She is very critical because it is her way of showing she cares.  I am not at all critical and I care as much! She is the trunk of a tree, hard to bend. I am a pliable branch who sees the whole picture.

She is not as sentimental. I cherish each little present placing them on my memory shelf.  She showers me with love with words of advice. I shower my daughters and daughter-in-law with love, hugs, kisses and advice when asked! You know, darlings, we are also our father’s daughters!

As you know, I draw my Good Morning Stories from my past experiences. I begin searching my mind, days before I put my fingers on the keyboard, for an eventful experience that has had a profound, loving or funny impact on my life.  I was planning on writing a delightful mother-daughter story about my daughter and myself; but missing my mother as I do today, I decided I would backtrack to tell a story that took place a few years ago and add a present story that relates to a recent conversation between my mother and me.

The mother-daughter relationship is complicated. Most all of them have hills and valleys. Mine is no different.

My mother was very strong and controlling and I was not a meek shrinking violet by any stretch of the imagination. That is not to say that I was disrespectful. I honored my parents. I just had my vision of who I was. My mother, on the other hand, had her vision of who I should be!

As I matured into adulthood I was sure I was not a clone of my mother. I was my own woman. As it turns out, at my mother’s ninetieth birthday party luncheon with fifty women in attendance to include her friends, granddaughters, nieces and my darling daughters-in law, I came to the realization “I am my mother’s daughter in more ways then not.”

We sat at one long table upstairs in a private dining room at Gibson’s, a favorite restaurant in my beautiful Chicago. My mother and brother sat at one end and my husband, Shelly and I at the other. I glanced at the setting and I could not make up my mind what was more beautiful, the gorgeous flowers down the length of the entire table or my mother’s friends from ages eighty-eight to ninety-six! As lunch progressed with abundant laughter and chatter from everyone permeating the room, I decided to stand up and ask each of the women to tell a story about my mother.