Dear Mom

Life doesn’t come with a manual. It comes with a mother.” – unknown

It seems like when I see a headline on the news relating to something that happened to a mom, it starts with something like, “Mom of two is ____” (fill in the blank with missing, found guilty, bitten by a dog and so on). She also might be a real estate agent, banker, engineer or some other profession but it seems in my non-scientific survey, that they always lead with her parental status.

Which I take to be evidence of the importance of mother figures. This post is a both a celebration of moms and also a chance for me, as a somewhat new-ish mom, to learn what is the essential stuff of motherhood.

If you feel comfortable, please tell me in the comments what was the most important lesson your mom or a mother figure taught you and/or if you are a mom, what is the primary thing you want your kids to get or learn from you. I’ll compile a list and publish it.

Here’s my start for the list:

My mom taught me to speak and write. Her precision with language is extraordinary so just by listening to her and having her guidance, I learned a great deal about speaking English properly. It’s only in later years that I’ve realized that my mom only speaks what she believes to be true, which is another dimension of her gift to not only be precise in how she says something but also in what she says.  

As for being a mom: I observe my kids eat better, communicate more clearly and follow the rules more closely when they are with people other than me. I sometimes, just for an instant, wish they would want to step it up and impress me. Then I remember what an honor it is to hold their fragile conception of love like a baby chick in my hand. When they are grown and have learned to behave and handle themselves well, I hope I’ve created a space in each of them that knows you don’t have to perform to be loved.

(featured photo is of my mom, my son and me)

(quote comes from a post on Philosophy through Photographs blog)

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38 thoughts on “Dear Mom

  1. A lovely reflection, Wynne. And what a sweet and intimate photo you shared. Moms rule. Happy Mothers Day to you and all the moms and maternal figures this weekend! 💕💐

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Beautiful post, Wynne. I love the picture of you and your mom, and your son. I have tears in my eyes, the good kind. So much love in that photo ❤
    When I think about what my mom taught me, some of it was overt and purposeful, but some of it was through example… it was just part of who she was. My mom taught me to give compliments freely (she would always compliment people, even random strangers), she taught me that learning to love began with learning to love myself, she taught me to set boundaries with others, she taught me that family and connection is everything, she modeled for me how to be strong in the face of adversity, and she taught me a love of growing things (people, pets, flowers, etc.). My mom was good at meeting a person where they were. She was supportive and encouraging, without being overbearing. Oh, and she also taught us to own up to our mistakes head on. She was all about integrity. I really enjoyed reading this post this morning and will be looking forward to the compilation of things that moms have taught us.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Wow, Grace, your mom sounds amazing! Integrity, ownership, encouragement, strength, love — just to name a few that you provided here. It just makes me warm reading it. Sending blessings to your mom feeling that she lives on so well in you – and sending blessings to you for sharing this! ❤

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Thank you for this beautiful response, Wynne. My mom WAS an amazing lady. I miss her every day…but I know that she lives on within all of her children and grandchildren…and once in awhile, I feel her presence when I am out in the garden amongst flowers. She loved Spring and planting season. Have a wonderful weekend ❤

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Thank you for sharing a part of your world and lovely photos!!.. my Mom taught me to follow my heart and my dreams and be me… with the many life challenges and constant change, learning to be a Mom (or anything else) is a daily experience and never ends…. 🙂

    Have a wonderful Mother’s Day and until we meet again..
    May the love that you give
    Always return to you,
    That family and friends are many
    And always remain true,
    May your mind only know peace
    No suffering or strife,
    May your heart only know love and happiness
    On your journey through life.
    (Larry “Dutch” Woller)

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Love this! Even though I had a very tumultuous relationship with my mother, I’m still grateful for her example of a strong woman who taught her son and daughter how to take care of themselves. We both learned not only how to cook, clean, and do laundry, but we both learned how to use hand and power tools to make minor repairs around the house. We learned a strong work ethic and the value of completing tasks properly!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Wow – on the practical matters, those are great lessons to learn. And I love how you can separate those out even with a tumultuous relationship. The product of your very healing work, I’m sure!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. 😊 I think you’re right! I wasn’t able to see the good stuff when I was younger, my anger and resentment got in the way of that. Healing is a very interesting thing isn’t it, we don’t always feel or see we are healing and then comes a day when we CAN speak about the past in a way which is reflective and thoughtful instead of feeling broken!

        Liked by 1 person

  5. My mom taught me many things, and did me many things for me (for which I am grateful), but her primary lesson was to love myself. I’ve been processing that one my whole life. Your mom has a really lovely face! 🙂 Thank you for sharing your family photo, and Happy Mother’s Day, Wynne. I enjoy your blog.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. This is the most beautiful and heartwarming photo of the day, Wynne ❤️. I’m writing about what my mother taught me in an upcoming post, and I appreciate the opportunity to reflect on that here. Lovely post!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. A very nice Mother’s Day post, Wynne. I’m interested in your interpretation of reports about women describing them according to their parental role rather than their professional role as a positive thing. I wish I agreed. I am more inclined to interpret these descriptions most of the time as being dismissive. Similarly, I find it condescending when anyone over the age of 65 is described as an “elderly” person. As an elderly mother, I’d rather be recognized for something other than my age and my ability to have reproduced. I DO agree that being a mother is the most important role I’ve had, but I don’t think that’s what’s meant at all when that descriptor is used for women in lieu of anything more specific.

    All that having been said, my mother (1917-1974) was a remarkable, strong woman. Although in a very strong and mutually supportive marriage in a different time, when many considered the man to be the provider, she taught me by example the importance for a woman to have a career of her own. She taught me by example the importance of lifelong learning, of being informed, and of having the confidence to use her voice. And, along with many other things, she gave me a lifelong love of music and books. I have missed her every day for nearly 50 years now.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Jane – I totally agree with you about the portrayal of women in the news. I was just putting a positive spin on it even though it simplifies the complexity and contribution of women greatly. And you have such a great point about “elderly” as another label that we need to think about.

      Your mom sounds amazing. I can see you in many of the things you say about her even only knowing you online. I’m sorry you lost her so young – but I am reassured that she is still with us in your daily thoughts of her!

      Happy Mother’s Day, Jane! Thanks for this gift of a comment.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. What a wonderful post. My mom has taught me so many things, but the one that got me through my years of academia was,” Always keep an emergency $20 bill in your, wallet it will get you through more jams than you can imagine.” She was of course correct as I was able to replace stockings, late night snacks, cover taxi fare, study supplies etc. The advice I would pass on to my children is listen. truly listen to what a person is saying, as it will allow you to not only communicate more clearly but obtain a clearer picture of the whole person.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I love the $20 bill advice – it covers so much ground with just one piece of advice like peace of mind, safety, treats. Brilliant!

      And listening is such a good one. May we all learn to do that better! Thanks for these contributions!

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  9. I was raised in the “Children are to be seen and not heard” era. While she did not easily fit into the warm and fuzzy category, my mother was an outstanding role model. Her love was expressed by example rather than hugs. We never knew until we were adults that she detested vegetables, which she faithfully ate every night of our youth to set a good example. She passed away at 101, by which time, hugs became a part of our daily lives. I miss her every day.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. What a funny story about your mom and vegetables. And I love that hugs became part of your daily lives – what a warm and telling story! This is a wonderful example of mother/daughter love that lives on in your missing her. Beautiful!

      Liked by 1 person

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