Mother’s love is peace. It need not be acquired, it need not be deserved ~ Eric Fromm Mother. Depending on our personal experiences with our mothers, I know just saying the word brings up a multilayered spectrum of reactions. Like it or not, without our mothers, we wouldn’t be here.
Growing up in the 50’s and 60’s, my mother Lillian was primarily a ‘stay-at-home’ mother. It’s not that she didn’t have high aspirations for her future. She dreamed of being a dancer. However, times required her to go to work as a bookkeeper for a dress manufacturer directly after graduating high school, her professional dancing dreams dashed.
To me she seemed to enjoy being a ‘housewife’. She was highly social, having many neighborhood friends, playing mahjong and staying involved in community events, even helping my father at times with his work. And the dancing dream wasn’t totally lost, as my father and her were outstanding ballroom dancers. When they took to the floor, everyone cleared the way and stopped to watch.
My mom remains an amazing guiding light to everyone who meets her. Having recently turned 101, she remains active and vibrant. No-one believes her when she says her age. She looks that amazing. Until age 96, she had never been in the hospital overnight other than to have her children, my brother, Niel and myself.
She has a life-affirming attitude and an indomitable will, that keeps her enjoying life, never complaining or looking back. She holds no grudges and has few, if any, regrets. She’s become everyone’s surrogate mother or grandmother, always there with a listening ear, or shoulder to cry on. However, be prepared, as she’ll often tell you, (whether you want to hear it or not), to “Talk yourself out of it.” A philosophy that appears to have worked for her.
What I’m perhaps most grateful to my mother for, is the belief and encouragement she offered, daring me to dream big and to spread my wings and fly. She always supported me in everything I wanted to do. There has never been any question about the intensity and sincerity of her love for me. She still places me on a pedestal and maintains unwavering faith in my abilities to accomplish whatever I set my heart on. Maybe sometimes more than I do for myself.
I’ve written several pieces to honor my mother, most recently to celebrate her 100th birthday! Of all the many things that stand out about her, is her spirit. As I’ve written, “She is vivacious and vital; has an impeccable memory, is beautiful, gracious and an inspiration to everyone who meets her. An inspiration of what aging gracefully can look like, in a culture that is obsessed with and idolizes youth.” Since writing that on her 95th birthday, nothing much has changed. She does mention that she’s had to slow down a little and things take longer to do than she’d like. Not a complaint, merely a comment.My mother was the middle of six children, the last one standing now. Her crisp, clear stories sound like they happened yesterday. She still has a pristine memory, freely sharing this gift of her memories, with anyone who is curious.
My book, Confessions of a Middle-Aged Hippie, my memoir, is very much a tribute to my mother. The stories of my life, simply wouldn’t be what they are without her. It felt important to record her recollections of a time long past, along with my own. Her energy and smile are still contagious and as my way of sharing a little bit of her with the world, she plays a key role in the “Confessions” book trailer video. I also created a tribute book to her, a handwritten, art-filled labour of love called A Day in The Life with many of the life stories she has shared with us.
Women’s Rights Movement
My relationship with my mother is quite different than my relationship with my own daughter, Lani. My daughter and I are friends and fly on the same wavelength. Yet, my mother and I are from radically contrasting eras, with vastly different values and morals.
One of the many cultural seeds planted during the “hippie” era when I grew up, was a new realm of possibilities for women, arriving via the birth of the women’s rights or feminist movement. It broke down barriers, ushering in a time of choices and freedom for many of us women.
Personally, although I intended to go back to work soon after having Lani, something shifted in me after giving birth. I chose to stay home for the first 20 months of her life. However, when offered the opportunity to partner with someone to start, what became a very successful business in the early days of home video, I eagerly jumped at the chance.
My dream had always been to be active out in the business world. Before my daughter was born, her father and I were on the road, performing in our own “rock & roll” band. It was great fun to write about many of these life experiences which I share in “Confessions” too.
Women in the Work Force
Thinking about my experiences both being mothered and as a mother, I wondered how things have changed in relation to stay-at-home vs. working mothers? It’s fascinating to see the stats on the topic. A LiveScience piece reports: “In the 1950s, only 19 percent of mothers with small children worked outside the home”, going on to say, “As of 2008, more than 60 percent of moms with kids under age 6 were in the workforce.” Quite a dramatic increase.
According to a Pew Research study, there is currently an increase in the numbers of women who are staying at home again. Interesting. “The share of mothers who do not work outside the home rose to 29% in 2012, up from a modern-era low of 23 per cent in 1999.” The study continues, “The rise over the past dozen years represents the reversal of a long-term decline in “stay-at-home” mothers that had persisted for the last three decades of the 20th century.” And there are a variety of contributing factors to this; demographic, economic, societal, along with mixed feelings about the impact a working mother has on young children and their well-being.
Although my mother wanted to work, my dad wasn’t too keen on it, preferring she stayed home. Women seemed okay with this back then. She managed to work part time and after my dad died, (when they were both only 51-years-old), partly due to necessity, my mom went out to work full-time. She kept working well into her late seventies. Her eyes sparkle when she talks about how much she enjoyed working. To me, my mother represents the ideal balance of stay-at-home and working mom. In a marvelous way, she’s an example of the “mother of all mothers”.
Mother and Daughter Relationships
Not working, was never a consideration for me. Starting in my teens working retail, I’ve engaged in a wide variety of pursuits in my life and intend to continue exploring opportunities, creating new life adventures, as my mom did. I respect whatever choice a woman makes for herself and family, as I truly value my time spent staying home with my daughter when she was young.
Not all mother/child relationships are perfect. I get that. I’ve also worked on leaving the past in the past, to focus on the wonderful, positive things my mother has given me. In the process, healing any areas of our relationship that needed healing. I’ve arrived at a place where I truly see her and appreciate her, for who she is.
How can we honor our mothers, not for just one day on Mother’s Day, but every day, for all they are (or were), and all they are not? I cannot imagine my mother not being here for me and know I’m very blessed to have her with me for this long. To my dear “mother of all mothers”, with all my love, this one is for you.
Feel free to share your own “mother of all mothers” stories.
A beautiful story about your mother as always. 🙂 Indeed our mother’s are the center of our existence…I do not see my mother that often, but she is still always there as a support. Having very much older brothers to which the relationship is a bit difficult at times, them being older, being men…and mainly, as often, hiding behind their wives and families, LOL…my mother has always been the focal point for us all.
It’s lovely to hear that your mother has always been the focal point in all of her children’s lives, Katarina. I imagine you miss seeing her, but it is very wonderful to hear how supportive you still feel she is for you. Yes, men definitely seem to move closer to their wives families, but I do see for some men, they remain very close with their mothers as well. 🙂
It is always warming to read your writings about your mother Beverley. Your deep love for and honor of her is so apparent. What a blessing you two are to each other! I wish that I could relate.
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Thanks so much Rachel! I appreciate hearing that you enjoy reading my pieces about my relationship with my mother. I am sorry to hear you don’t have the same and hope somehow, someday, we can find the place to heal it for your sake and for hers. I have seen people do this, even if the person is no longer alive. It is wonderful I’ve had all these years to heal mine with my mother.
I’m glad that I’m also mostly on the same wavelength with my own mother. I find women of my generation to be more friendly with their moms, like you shared. I feel like we’re more invested in being the author of our stories.
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I think the generation gap between my mother’s generation and mine is much greater than between mine and my daughter’s, Jennifer. It sounds like you have a good relationship with your mother, which seems to be more prevalent in this generation. I agree that it is because women are now supportive and invested in making sure we all have the choices we want to create our own lives.
Your relationship wth your mother is one to be honored. She grew up in different times, when women were expected to stay home and be the housewife. And of course this role is a vital one for the growth of our children. So interesting that women today are going back to this stay at home Mom role. The difference is that they are CHOOSING it. Many of our mothers did not have an option
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Thanks so much, Alene. I am finally at a place with my mother, where I believe I have healed all the ‘issues’ we’ve gone through. Maybe having this much time with her, has been a good thing for us both. It is interesting that women of today are choosing to be stay-at-home, although I agree with you. It is about CHOICE and having that makes a big difference in our modern-world.
Such a beautiful heart felt story Beverley. I feel the love, inspiration and impact mama had on you and how you too have a wonderful impact on your own daughter. Even tough love has a way of making a wonderful impact at the right time……
Thank you so much for your kind words, Teresa! My mother is quite a force of nature and she has an inspirational impact on everyone who meets her, which is lovely.
You come from a strong lineage! This definitely gives some explanation to your “fire” 😉 I love your writings. You are truly blessed to still have your mother for her 101st year. She must really enjoy what life has to offer, and still have much to give! Blessings~
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Thanks so much for your supportive words for me and my writing, Cathy! My mother is quite a force of nature and somewhat ‘unexplainable’, so I feel blessed to have her as an example of what is possible when it comes to aging. She does love life and people and still has much to share and give everyone who has the privilege to meet her! 🙂
What a beautiful writing Beverley. It is inspiring. In my first psychology class in college, our final was a discussion about “mother” and about “death.” That says a lot. As a therapist for over 30 years, I have heard more than my share about moms.
What came to me reading your blog is that this would be an incredible exercise for everyone! How healing it would be to do a tribute to your mom in this way, regardless of any unresolved issues or feelings. What an experience. Thanks!
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Thanks so much Candess! I find the ‘mother’ conversation so interesting as well. Mother-daughter and mother-son relationships seem to have such unique dynamics. Interesting that your psychology class had ‘mother and ‘death’ as the topic for your final discussion. It does say a lot about how individually they impact us.
I also love your idea of offering this exercise of writing a tribute to your mother, as a way to heal any outstanding discord. As a biography facilitator, I know this would work whether the parent is alive or not. I see how it could actually resolve any unresolved issues and could strengthen relationships that are already good!
This is a wonderful article about your mom and your journeys in the Hippy Era. That is so fun to be able to go on the road with your husband. I really see the love you had for your mom and I also can understand the generation difference that lies between my mom and I. Its nice though I am close to my mom, but we went through our stages, but I really respect my mom for what she has done for me and my sister.This was very sweet and made me think a lot about hugging my mom.
Thanks Lori English
Thanks for sharing a bit about your relationship with your own mom, Lori! It sounds like in spite of the issues you had at times, you have a strong and loving relationship with her now! That is really what matters most. Enjoy your Mother’s Day hugs with your mom. I am sure she will appreciate them very much!
How wonderful that you mother is in good health and her memories are still sharp. She’s a treasure and I hope you are recording how she has seen the world change. Fewer and fewer people are keeping journals, and younger people don’t have a clue as to their history. Your mother is a living history that we can all learn from. Also, I love your use of photos in your posts. It makes everything so much more special.
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Thanks so much Joyce! Yes, my mother continues to amaze and surprise people and hopefully inspire them too! Inspire them to see what is possible when it comes to aging and still being vital. I have recorded many of her stories on paper and have been encouraged to video her and I have conversations too. Being that I am not that comfortable with video, I guess I’ve shied away from that. My mother does have a living history and this generation needs to be preserved so we can learn the valuable lessons they have to teach us! Happy to hear you enjoyed the photos too. I’ve been a chronicler of our family and it appears my mother has too, as she has so many old photos to treasure.
Beautiful pictures and stories, Beverley! Your tributes and memoirs make me want to take some time to record some of my mom’s stories. At of your mom 70 something (I have honestly lost track, and if you ask her, she’s been counting backwards since she turned 60, so she may be younger than I am now!) she is vibrant and active with a positive attitude, and has lots of stories I want to make sure I get right!
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Thanks so much Kimberly! I appreciate hearing that you enjoyed the pictures and stories in this tribute post to my mother. It’s interesting that you have lost track of your mother’s age and maybe she is going backwards in age. It’s lovely that you see her as vibrant, active and positive. I really do encourage you to record her stories while you can! You will be really happy you have them in the future. We still ask my mother about her life and we are still hearing new stories believe it or not. Enjoy the process of recording her life!
Wow.. great pictures and great stories… I am struggling with my relationship with my mother right now so this is a bit of a bittersweet time. Though I do have two amazing girls of whom I am extremely proud.
Kristen Wilson recently posted…Don’t Try to Beat Them – Bury Them, Reviews That Is
Glad you enjoyed the pictures and stories in this piece, Kristen! A glimpse inside the lives. Sorry you and your mother are struggling now and I only hope you find a common ground to heal on, as I know that leaving relationships unresolved or at odds, is challenging when there is no time left to mend it. Your daughter’s and you have a very strong bond, I can tell. Cherish that and build on. You will all be happy as the years go on to have each other to turn to.
What a gift from your mother- encouraging you to dream big! And how wonderful that you and your mother have such a strong relationship even though you approach the world from different view points. Lots to be grateful for there!!
My mother truly believed, and still does, that I can do anything, Deb. Our relationship is strong, even through the times and issues we are not on the same page about. Very grateful to have her with me as long as I have. That in and of itself is both inspiring and something to be grateful for!
I so enjoyed reading more about your Mother. She has led a fascinating life. I love how she must have a really bubbly personality even at the age of 100. As you and I have shared before, you know I just lost my Mama last year to cancer at the age of 94+. Your Mother and my Mama were women of the same generation and were amazingly strong in so many ways. As I have grown older, I’ve realized how much of a role model my mother was to me. From reading your article ‘Mother of All Mothers’ I gather that your mother has also been a role model to you. I love the picture above of your mother with her 100 year crown, you, and your daughter. It is beautiful in so , so many ways. Thanks for the window into your life.
I know how much you loved and cared for you mother, Pat! I remember all the posts you wrote about her and know each word was a tribute to her. The generation they came from is not to be repeated and I often feel sad we are not learning more from them and their lifestyle. I’ve written about that as well as you know! Funny that I never saw my mother as a role model, but in so many ways, her encouragement and support, has always been an underlying theme. I appreciate you reading this and I am happy you enjoyed the photos of us all. Both the new one from March and the ones that chronicle a bit of the story and history. A window into my life, yes indeed! Thank You!
beverley, what a wonderful tribute to your mother. I thought first she sounds like my Mother whose love of life and community work was celebrated when she passed at 87 back in 2001. I still feel her presence and guidance. Thank you for sharing your mother i would love to sit and chat with you and her , maybe one day. Thank you for the memories too ???
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Suzie, I would love to have a conversation with you as well and know you would thoroughly enjoy my mother! Your mother sounds very vibrant and a woman who also loved life! I appreciate knowing that my piece brought back some wonderful memories for you too. <3 <3
Thank you so much for your soulful and personal post, Beverley! Such a beautiful heartfelt tribute your mother, the “mother of all mothers” indeed! You mum looks amazing in her 100!! You’ve got great gens! 🙂
My mother was always working… She was a librarian and LOVED her work. I don’t remember her ever being home unless I was sick. Then suddenly, after my father passed and my niece was born, she became a grandmother and she never looked back… She enjoyed her friendships, cultural life and travel. I am so happy to see her enjoying life outside of work… Her shift in perspective and values is an important lesson for me as I too work all the time and enjoy it…
It’s interesting to see how much we do watch and learn from our mothers, Millen! My mother loved to work and worked until she was 79! She would have worked longer if they would have let her, as she loves people. Your mother sounds very vibrant and engaged with life and I know that is a big key to staying healthy and vibrant as we get older. It is wonderful that she found pleasure in things outside of work, as often we believe we are our work. A great lesson your mother has taught you Millen! Thanks again for your lovely and supportive words. xo
What a beautiful, loving tribute, Beverley. My mom is turning 87 this year. Your post has pushed me to write a tribute to her while she is still living and read it to her. Thank you for the inspiration.
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Thank you so much Diane! I appreciate your kind words. I know your mother ail love the tribute piece you write to her and I am delighted this post inspired you to go ahead and write it while she is still alive!
It’s so inspiring that you have such a wonderful relationship with your mother, what a priceless legacy she has given you! I had a very different relationship with my mother, and not one I’m inclined to share, but regardless, as you say I’m here because of her and I respect that. Thank you for sharing your beautiful story with Beverley!
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Thanks for your reflection on your own mother/daughter relationship, Marquita! When I objectively stand back and see my mother, I appreciate her for her tenacity and her will and really respect that as being inspiring! It has taken many years for me to get to that place and yet, she has always been here cheering me on. I think that you can respect that you are here because of your mother is a start! I appreciate your honesty and your support of my stories.
Loved LOVED your post Beverley!!!!
Awesome and inspirational post on mothers and especially about your own mother That is so great that your mom has given you so much insight and encouragement 😉 Thanks so much for sharing your inspirational story about how important mothers are and how very special they are to their daughters 🙂
Thanks for sharing!!!
Joan M Harrington recently posted…Are You An Entrepreneur Who Believe Your Dreams Are Worth Chasing?
Thank you so much Joan! I appreciate your support and enthusiasm for my posts! Yes, my mother has much wisdom to share with me and with others too, so I feel grateful she has been here so long to inspire others too! Mother and daughter relationships are also very interesting, and definitely worth honouring and sharing. Thanks for appreciating it!
Love the 3 generation pictures! The older I get, the more I realize how I misjudged my mother. She died 3 years ago, and if I could just have 15 minutes to talk with her again, I would appreciate it so much. Even if I’d known she was going to die & had my “final talk” with her, it would have been vastly different than it would be today. As is, the most i can do is honor her existence by taking her wisdom to heart. Now, I’m so proud of her.
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Thanks so much for sharing that part of your relationship with you mother, Joan. I am doing everything I can not to have anything left unsaid between my mother and I. The mother daughter relationship is always such an interesting one and I am being given lots of time to get it “right” it seems. I think the fact that you honour your mother by taking her wisdom to heart and are proud of her, is somehow felt by her across the veils. I appreciate your lovely comment about the three generations photos too!
I love this Beverley, so touching. My mother recently moved close to me and I’m blessed that I get to visit it her all the time. No more travelling! Writing this must of made you a little teary, it’s such a beautiful and emotionally well written contribution to Your Mom. 😀
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Thanks so much Gilly! I am so happy to hear that your mother is now close enough that you can visit with her all the time. I’ve always had my mother close to me, so I know how much of a convenience that really is for staying close. I appreciate you reading this post and yes, somehow writing about my mother comes so naturally to me, and my posts about her seem to resonate with others! That is all I can ask for, so thank you!
When I read this beautiful post, Beverley, I had a similar reaction to Roslyn of wanting to see your mother in action, to hear her talk. Through your posts I feel like we’ve all gotten to know her a little bit, and now we want to see more of her. And then I read that you had a video business! So I, for one, am putting in a request for a short video of you chatting with your mom! xo, Reba
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There is a short video of my mother on my YouTube channel, Reba, although it isn’t the best quality. It is more what she had to say about life and living. I’m delighted to share my mother and to hear by sharing her, people feel like they know her and want to see more of her. Yes, I did have a home video business, however, I am a bit “video shy”, but will take your request and see if we can arrange something. My brother and I did some videos with us asking her questions, but you only see her answering. I appreciate your interest and encouragement, as video is a much more personal way of connecting and feeling someone! I commend you on doing your new video interview show too!
Oh wow, You brought me back to my mom. She’s been gone ten years now, and I don’t really feel the tug of her that often, and then boom, your beautiful post arrives in front of my eyes. Thank you for sharing this and for the joyful three-generation photo at the end.
I am a mother, and I am a daughter, and I feel that line of divine feminine love running right through me. I’m happily sharing this post with my tribe.
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Wow! Thank you so much Sue for sharing so eloquently how this post impacted you. I sincerely appreciate hearing how many memories my article about my mother, is evoking in others. It is very touching. I also feel the divine feminine running through my matriarchal lineage, as my mother’s mother was a beautiful soul whose energy still is strongly felt. I appreciate hearing that the photo of my mother, my daughter and I felt joyful, as it was from March and the celebration of my mother turning 100! It doesn’t get any more joyful than that! Many thanks for sharing my mother with your tribe too!
So beautiful Beverley. You make us want to be better people, daughters and mothers! I am going to write a nice long letter to mama instead of a hallmark card. Also, one thing comes into my mind very often that mama said to me, ‘you do the choosing in your life and don’t just stand around waiting for others to choose you.’ I don’t think I ever told her how much that advice has helped me over the years, so I am going to tell her in the letter. 🙂 Thanks for the inspiration.
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Thanks so much for sharing how this article impacted you, Teresa, and how it has you wanting to write a thank-you letter to your mother for all she taught you. I know she will love reading about the lessons she has taught you. I appreciate knowing that my post inspired you in some way too!
Such lovely images, especially the one on the top. Great genes, clearly! 🙂 Your talk about the women’s movement reminded me of how, at one point in my young life, I was ashamed of my mother…because she didn’t look like all those moms and housewives I saw on TV and in magazines. In 1966, she went back to work when my sister (the youngest of us four) turned 2. I resented that, too, thinking — rightly or wrongly — that much of the housework fell on me as the oldest child. It took many years and lots of soul-searching and therapy to come to a better understanding of her as a woman, mom and human being. She taught me much in her 83 years on this earth.
Thanks so much Jackie! I wonder about the great genes, as my mother seems to have gotten them all in her side of the family. 🙂 It is interesting to hear how you “reacted” to your mother going back to work and how you were ashamed of her for being unlike the images of women you were seeing. I’m so happy to came to a deep understanding of your mother, and having read your beautiful tribute to her, I really feel you learned many wonderful lessons from your mother, the person and the human being. Yes, I really got that she taught you much more than your younger self realized at the time. It’s wonderful you got to come to this realization while she was still alive!
Wonderful post! I love posts that show living to 100 is not fantasy and positive mindset us a big key thank you so much!!
Thanks so much Lisa! I appreciate your lovely comment and yes, living to 100 is possible and my mother is living proof. And she is still vital and active too, which is what we all wish for ourselves. Mindset is absolutely the biggest key for my mother. There really is not other explanation based on her “heredity” in her family!
I love that you give your Mother such tribute with your words. My favorite line is that you respect women’s choices. That is something I wish all would do. There is no right or wrong answer but to make the choice you think is best for you and your family. My Mom was always home but that was because we lived on a farm, so she worked hard milking cows, gardening and helping in the field. I always thought I would work and probably never have kids. I did have 2 boys and ended up staying home with them. I left a high powered career as a director of human resources to raise my boys. Absolutely no regrets. Now as they are ready to make a life for themselves I went back to school and started my own business. I have had the best of all worlds in my mind. I did what was best for my family and me. No regrets or guilt, just love.
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Thanks so much for your supportive words, Karen. Yes, I do respect women for the choices they make for themselves and honour that each of us are different. Your mother sounds like a loving and hard working woman who shared very strong values with you. Like you, I didn’t know if I actually wanted children and thought I would go back to work right after she was born. It didn’t turn out that way and I stayed home for almost two years, until I was offered a partnership in a burgeoning home video business. I had to say yes! I really appreciate hearing that you honoured your own calling, stayed home and raised your boys, and then created a new life for yourself by going back to school and starting your own business. It sounds like you have been very clear about what is important to you and have honoured that! Yes, always from a place of love.
Your love and respect for your Mum is so heartwarming and being able to appreciate her for who she is, encouraging. She must be so proud of you Beverley, not only for all your wonderful achievements, but also for the way you honour her.
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Thank you so much Tami, as I appreciate that you can see how much I love and respect my mother…sometimes I wonder if she does see that. I think my mother is proud of me, “just because”, if that makes sense and has always been my biggest cheerleader! I am happy to know that what I write is seen as honouring my mother too! xo
Love seeing all your family photos and hearing the stories. Your mom really does look great! My mom passed away in 2012 at age 87 and more and more I realize that I never really knew her. She kept us (my brothers and I) at arm’s length, more concerned about being a matriarch than a friend in her later years. Not having children myself, I can’t relate to the family dynamic of which you speak. You are blessed.
Thanks so much Carol! Happy you enjoyed the old family photos and the family stories. It is too bad that you didn’t have the opportunity to know your mother better, especially as adult to adult, because of how she distanced you and your brother. I believe I am blessed to have my mother with me so long and I feel I missed knowing my father, as he was only 51 when he died, 48 years ago. Our lives are all so interesting and the lesson it seems is to enjoy what those we have when they are here and to make each moment count!
As we go thru our days, week by week and moment by moment, it is easy to not appreciate our mothers appropriately. Thank you for this post. Thank you for this inspiration.
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Thanks so much Renee! I am very happy that this post brought a little bit of “mother” inspiration into your day!
This is a great tribute to your mom. My mother has past some years ago and when I think of her I realize how much she was a cheerleader in my life. I do have cheerleaders now, but she was the first to support me and really tell me like it is. I miss her everyday.
What a beautiful memory of your mother relating to being your first and probably most supportive cheerleader, Sabrina! I totally get that too, and imagine that having had that kind of love and support, you would miss your mother very much. Time doesn’t seem to matter, as I know how much I miss my dad even 48 years later!
What a beautiful tribute to your mom, Beverley. Sure makes me miss mine . . .
But I just love most of all “the belief and encouragement she offered, daring me to dream big and to spread my wings and fly.”
Now, THAT’s a true mom!
Susan Mary Malone recently posted…7 Ways To Be More Energetic When You Don’t Want To Be
Thanks so much Susan! I seem to have been sharing my mother with the world quite a bit in the last little while. Our relationship has been very interesting and yet, there is something about still having her here that I don’t want to take for granted. I know that she is an inspiration to those who get to meet her and hear about her and her philosophy of life. I imagine that you had a wonderful and loving relationship with your mother and I can only imagine how much you miss her! Yes, my mother always believed I could do anything I set my mind and hear too and she always encouraged me to at least try!
I read this post again & again and as our friendship has grown & I’ve gotten to know you, I would love to have a chat with your mom about what it was like to raise you. My guess is the apple didn’t fall far from the tree, it just took on a different form reflecting the changing times.
Three beautiful strong women in these photos. A fantastic expression of motherhood, femininity, beauty, strength, creativity, talent and happiness.
Thanks so much Roslyn, as I appreciate our growing friendship and it is wonderful for me to hear how your perspective changes when reading things I’ve wrote, a second or third time knowing me as you do now. I don’t see myself as my mother really, although I do have her persistence and stubbornness I guess. I always thought I was more like my father to be honest. Very interior and inward.
Thank you for such beautiful words about my mother, my daughter and myself and I love hearing that the photos convey an expression of such powerful descriptives…beauty, strength, creativity, talent and happiness plus femininity and motherhood! Wow! I am very flattered and grateful to you for sharing that! xo
Amazing testimony to your Mom, Beverley. Thanks for sharing that… there is so much to take from their life experience if we stop for a moment to reflect. Many mothers are not perfect, but I’ve always tried to give my Mother the grace she deserved as my respect. We are all a product of the way we were brought up, the influences around us, and what we knew at the time. I keep that in perspective… and I loved my Mom, even when. Great post, thanks for sharing it. x0x
Savvy Solutions for the Female BizPreneur (Norma Doiron) recently posted…How to Create a Unique Elevator Pitch
Thanks so much Norma. I think the mother-daughter relationships is most interesting. There is so much we can learn from them and I wonder if sometimes it takes life experience of our own to “get” it. My mother and I now have a long history and I am delighted to share her with others, as like all of us, I had to shift my perspective and see her for who she is as a wonderful and inspiring lady. We are all a product of how we were brought up and ultimately our mothers deserve respect and grace as you said and acceptance for being who they are, regardless of their shortcomings. Thanks for sharing you comments and voice on this one!
An amazing tribute to your mom, Bev! You are so very lucky to have her in your life, wow!
And can I say I love the pic with the 3 of you at the end of your post? 3 beautiful generations of women, how lovely you look with matching sunglasses!
Delia @ Happy Blogger Plaza recently posted…How to blog confidently even if you’re not the best writer
Thanks so much Delia! Glad you enjoyed the photo, it was from my book launch party for “Confessions” and of course everyone was wearing rose-coloured glasses to celebrate the day. I agree that I am lucky to have my mother in my life for so long and it truly is a blessing to be graced with her as an inspiration for so long.
I love how you Honor your mother, who seems so lovely. I miss my mother who passed-on 15 years ago. And though I miss her each moment of my life, I still feel her at my side. Blessed Be.
Thanks so much Renee! I cannot even imagine life without my dear mother here, so I know how hard it must be to have spent so many years without your mother here. I do believe, like you that our mother lives in our heart always and is always with us, even if not in physical form.
I am still amazed that your mom is in her 90s! Talk about aging gracefully. It seems with each passing year women’s roles are expanded. We do it all! I watched my mothers, maternal and paternal grandmothers serve as wives, mothers, “community mothers” and manage to hold full time jobs. I pray I can be half the women they are. Thank you for sharing this tribute to your mom..she would be proud!
Thanks so much Sharise! She is definitely a force of nature and continues spreading inspiration to those who meet her. And yes, women and our “roles” in the world do continue to expand and multiply it seems. You also have a strong matriarchal lineage to draw from and to pass on to those who you share your life with. We all find our own way in the world and the key is to honour our heritage and to create new paradigms of possibility in the world. I know you will also do you mother and grandmothers very proud with all you contribute to the world!
What a beautiful tribute to your Mom Beverley. I recall one of your earlier posts about your Mom and it was filled with the same depth of total love and appreciation for what obviously is, a very special lady.
It was a joy reading the deep connection you have with your Mom and the part she played in shaping who you are today even though, as you say, you were from radically contrasting era’s.
What fun it must be listening to her stories and sharing a period in history that so many of us will never appreciate first hand. There couldn’t be a more befitting gift to your Mom than your writings in Confessions of a Middle-Aged Hippie. It somehow preserves the precious memories of two women who walked a very different but tremendously courageous road!
I can’t wait to meet her and give her a big hug when I visit Canada! Thanks once again for taking us on a heart-warming journey!
Michelle Williams recently posted…Why Self-Love Should Be The Centre Of Your Life!
Thanks for getting how amazing it is to have a mother who is still very vital and vibrant and can share her clear and vivid memories of an era of long ago. I cannot even imagine what it is like to have reached 99 and still have so many memories of your childhood. She has always been around and I cannot imagine what life would be like without her. Sharing some of her stories in my book “Confessions of a Middle-Aged Hippie” was a way to giving back a bit of her to the world and of course her stories have very much shaped my life as well. I would love for you to come to Canada and have a chance to meet her and give her a big hug. She is truly a loving and compassionate lady with a big heart. I think the mother daughter relationship is a very interesting one and all us “daughters” have our own ways to honouring and sharing our mothers love with the world!
Really enjoyed your post on Mothers 🙂 Made me think about my own relationship with my own Mom, and I had a few “AHA” moments while reading your post 🙂 Yes, how different we are from our own Mothers and then looking at my relationship with my own daughter I have to say we are similar on so many things, but she is definately way more unique and has her own way of doing things. I know you must think about this as well, but I have had a few regrets raising her, but I know I did the best I could and she turned out beautifully, in spite of 😉
Thanks for always making me ponder my own circumstances with your awesome value that you put out on your blog!
Joan Harrington recently posted…Convert Your Blog Readers into Buyers—Without Being Pushy
Love how you are open to ponder things in your own life Joan and how you come back with some wonderful observations of how what I experience and write about, reflects things back to you in your own life. I think the gap between my mother’s generation and my generation is huge and like you, my relationship with my daughter is much different indeed. We seem to be more in sync, or more aligned with each other. And yes, we always have big choices to make in how and what we do in raising our children and we have to trust that we are making the right ones at the right time. I imagine your daughter is fabulous as I get how sincere and concerned a person you are and believe you have imparted that to her! As always, thanks for your support and for adding your voice and experience to the conversation.
I always love reading about your mom. A beautiful tribute. I love my mom and I am grateful she is here. Lately, especially with Mother’s Day just passing, I have been thinking of my husband’s mother. She passed of the same type of cancer I had, long before he and I met. I wonder what she would have been like, if I am worthy of what she’d want for her son and I imagine she must have been pretty wonderful to raise such an amazing man. I know it may be silly, but I ponder what it be like to have the chance to thank her, just once.
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Thanks so much Heather. I really appreciate your heart and sincerity in all you write and share. It is so lovely that you also have a wonderful loving relationship with your mother. Reading this I had this thought that maybe your husband’s mother already does know you thank her. I wonder sometimes how my (late) father would have loved to know my daughter. She is named for him and I believe that somehow our souls transcend this earthly physical existence and that we are all connected beyond what we define as human space and time. It is lovely to think and wonder and imagine what our relationships with those who aren’t here would be like. And you have your husband who embodies his mother to experience her in him. Hmm. I am also getting very sentimental as I am writing these thoughts and appreciate you sharing yours, always.
What a beautiful tribute to a beautiful woman, Beverley! My own mother and I are quite different in many ways (she’s more fun, I’m a bit more serious like my dad) but I am so, so thankful for her. So fun to think about ways that the generation we were raised in influences our relationship with our mother …
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Thanks Kimber! You sound like me in that I am more like my dad as well. I am incredibly grateful to have such an inspiring mother though, even though for many years I didn’t really want to be like her. Her strength and perseverance have really shown me what is possible in life. And yes, motherhood has definitely changed throughout the years and has influenced our relationships with our own mothers.
Wow, what a great post, and your mom looks incredible! I have been blessed with 2 moms, the first one, I lost at a very young age, the second one came into life when she married my dad. She adopted me and has raised me as her own ever since. I am blessed. She has believed in my when I certainly didn’t, has been honest and supportive always. I now know what a wonderful thing it is to be a mom, I hope I can be as good to my child as both my moms have been to me. Thanks for writing such a beautiful post
Thanks so much for your kind words, Lisa! Yes, my mother is quite an inspiration of what is possible when it comes to aging and still being vibrant and vital. Sounds like you have wonderful memories to your 2 moms and it is indeed a blessing to feel this love as you do. I agree that having a mother who supports us and encourages us goes a long way in instilling self-worth and confidence in us, which in turn we can pass on and share with our own children. Sounds like you love being a mother and that your children are fortunate to have you now as someone to inspire them to pass it forward to their children. Appreciate your support and many thanks again!
Your mom is a beautiful woman with a beautiful soul. I loved this article, Beverley. I was a single mom of three kids for many years until I met the love of my life who adopted my kids and together we made one big family. (Very much like the Brady Bunch!) I was raised by a wonderful mother who wanted nothing more than to stay home and raise us kids but, like your mom, had to go out to work from time to time. I always had to as well. This being a mom thing isn’t the easiest job but so worth it!
Just put your book on my wish list too!
Thanks so much for your lovely comments Paula! You have truly embodied what a blended family with much strength is. Being a mom is quite a balancing act indeed and at times I wonder if people appreciate all that it takes to be a good mother. My mother worked until she was 78 and actually loved it. She would have still worked longer if they would have let her. She is still going strong and still vibrant and active and having women like this is quite inspirational indeed. Sounds like you had a great mother as an example as well and that you are passing this on to your children as well. Love to have your read my book and have you write a review for it as well once you do! Thanks for adding your personal experiences into this conversation, as it is very appreciated.
Our Mothers are one of God’s greatest gifts to us, Beverley and Daddys are the other gift. Sorry, but for some reason, I can never think of one without the other. 🙂
My late grandmother was a hardcore career girl and had my Mom not married a career diplomat, her dream was to become an atomic scientist. Years later, as a career girl myself, I asked her if she had any regrets about staying at home while the rest of her family was working outside the home and this is where the grace of her era comes in. My Mom said that she had achieved more by raising 2 empowered daughters to stand on their own feet.
It also gave her time to focus on her art which is a passion and the fact that she is due to showcase her 22nd solo exhibition in October and is an internationally awarded artist is a lesson to the younger generation that we women can have it all, provided we are ready to change and adapt and find a new passion to work towards.
Vatsala Shukla recently posted…5 Healthy Reasons to Procrastinate… and delay eating the frog
What amazing and inspirational women both your mother and grandmother are, Vatsala. I think of my father all the time and miss having him in my life, as he died suddenly when I was only 19, leaving my mother alone to raise my brother and myself.
How fascinating it is to hear that your mother expanded her talents and passions and lived a beautiful and fulfilling life both as a mother, and also developing herself as an artist. And yes, raising two empowered daughters is a wonderful achievement indeed. Your mother offers an amazing lesson to all generations of what is possible and how many facets we have to who we are and how we can share ourselves with the world.
A beautiful tribute, Beverley! I thoroughly enjoyed reading this expression of love. I dedicated my first officially published book, Why YOU SUCK at Network Marketing, to my mom and I often use stories about her passion and entrepreneurial pursuits during my live workshops. Moms are so important to our development. They shape everything about us – good, bad, or ugly. It is fascinating to reflect on how a mother’s influence has affected one’s perception of the world. Thank you for sharing!
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Thanks so much for sharing how your mother has impacted your life as well, Niquenya. Sounds like your mom has had a powerful influence on you as well. Yes, this mother-daugher thing, certainly can present challenges at times, yet the truth is their influence is undeniable, as you said. Glad you enjoyed reading this and I love hearing how you not only dedicated your book to your mother, but how you incorporate her stories into the work you do and what you share as well! Thanks so much for your voice in this conversation.
what a wonderful tribute to your mother, Beverley. And that photo of you, your mother, and your daughter – over-the-top beautiful. So glad you’ve got such a supportive mother who continues to inspire and encourage you.
Deb Nelson recently posted…Jon Huntsman, Sr.: On a Mission to Cure Cancer
Thanks for the supportive words, Deb. I am fortunate indeed to have such a vibrant inspirational mother present in my life. She is quite an inspiration to everyone who meets her. An example of what is possible as we age.
Loving the new site! And thanks for sharing your “mother of all mothers” story. Every day should be celebrated like it was Mother’s Day.
Ashley recently posted…Stage Door!
Thanks for taking a look around Ashley and happy you like the site! Yes, this was an important piece to share, as we all could use a gentle reminder to honour our mothers every day.
Such an easy-to-navigate site, Beverley, congratulations. And happy to see that you’re sharing some of the wonderful things we’ve read at HuffPo … available again in this venue. I look forward to watching you build this site with your perceptive writing and analysis …
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Thanks for visiting and taking a look around Sharon. Happy to hear that you found the site easy-to-navigate too! Appreciate that feedback and yes, I believe this website will be a work a growing in progress. Appreciate your kind words on my writing too. 🙂
Loving your site and logo very cool… this is making me want to take my mother for dinner tonight. We need to cherish them… thanks for sharing.
Thanks for the thumbs up on my new site and logo. Taking your mother out for dinner sounds like a great idea and yes it is very important to cherish them while they are here.
Relationships can be very difficult and not always be what we hope them to be. Making peace in a relationship allows you to heal and create better relationships in the future. We can not always go back and fix what is broken but we can learn from it and make what is in front of us so much better.
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So true Meryl! My relationship with my mother has morphed and changed over the years and I am delighted to say that I truly believe it is possible to heal any relationship, at any stage. Making peace is so much healthier for all parties involved and to have the opportunity to “fix” it, before it might be past the point of no return, is where the healing can happen.
I can’t begin to write my ‘mother’ story as it would be as long as yours and not as loving. Sufice it to say, I made peace with mine before her death and am working on my relationship with my daughter. Loved reading your story and can appreciate the words and feelings expressed.
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One of the great things you say is that you “made peace” with your mother before her death. I’ve learned that is an important key in healing a relationship, to do it before it is theoretically “too late”. Fabulous that you are working on your relationship with your own daughter too. Also appreciate your lovely and supportive words after reading this piece. 🙂