Books, TV, movies often portray horrible mother-daughter relationships. I have met women who wouldn’t walk across the street to say hello to their own mothers. I’m happy to say that I am fortunate to have a great mom. I am grateful that she lives nearby in the home she and my dad built together and that she is still in pretty good health at age 80, all things considered. She is a good friend and I enjoy her company.
I must say, my mother made mothering look easy. I’m not so sure I’m nearly as good a mother as she! I always seem to say the wrong thing, be in the wrong the place, do the wrong thing. (I know that embarassing our children in front of their friends is our job as parents… and I take that part of the job very seriously. I’m not talking about that part! I just mean… when you say something you thought might be amusing and instead it results in a burst of tears… Why can’t I predict that and avoid it?)
Technically, my teenage daughters still live here. But some days, you’d never know it. They are developing their own circles of friends and living their own lives. And since my mom taught me: “My job as a parent is to make you not need me,” I have to stand aside and watch it happen.
Sometimes the girls still let us take them on family outings, like our annual bike ride at Presque Isle, followed by ice cream at this colorful establishment. (Which reminds me… we had better get this on the calendar fast before summer is over and the opportunity is past!)
In addition to providing me with endless hours of enjoyment and a creative outlet, my camera and my romps in the woods are therapy against the early stages of Empty Nest Syndrome. They give me something to do that is an expression of me. They let me be a nature photographer, instead of just Emily’s and Maddie’s mom. Don’t get me wrong… I love being their mom! But it’s nice to have a life of my own, too. I have to be careful, though, that I don’t lose track of time and miss a track meet or a concert… because being the mom is still my favorite role.
My husband bought me a lovely bouquet of flowers for Mother’s Day. I also went out and “picked” my own… via photograph only, of course.
Happy Mother’s Day!