My mom once gave me a little book of quotes on mothers and daughters. Actually, I have just spent half an hour rooting through my shelves and book piles looking for it, to get a quote right that goes something like this, "I love my mother and hate my mother so much, that I don't know where she ends and I begin." (No idea who said it.)
Clearly, I couldn't find the book, but I did find – in what became quite a schmaltzy half hour for me – a whole BUNCH of books my mother has given me over the years.
The Enid Blytons that turned me into a voracious reader, and therefore gifted me with a bigger window into the world to look out of for the rest of my life.
The book on Understanding Sexuality she gave me at 13, which scared the BEJESUS out of me. (I think I was the only 13-year-old in SA who knew what a 3rd stage syphilitic chancre looks like. Thanks Mom. And yes, it served its purpose.)
The books she has given me as an adult: on holistic health, on Taoism (here's a quote from The Tao of Motherhood I particularly like) and Druids, chick lit and beautiful lit, albums for keeping memories of my sons... and many, many more.
And it struck me, more than ever, that the relationship between mother and daughter is one of the most fascinating of all human relationships. As a woman, I find myself trying to define boundaries between where I begin and she ends, while yearning still to be flesh of her flesh. Trying to balance the need to strike out and assert myself with the urge to tuck myself comfortingly under her personal ideals.
Going into Mother's Day this weekend, I ask two things:
First, please send me all the off-beat, risqué and downright RUDE mothering quotes and pics you can, so we can share them on the site (like this one, send to me this morning by @anib on Twitter). We need to build a shield against the tide of pink plushy vomitiness which is about to break on us.
Second, take a moment to think about your relationship with your mother, and tell us about thing you are going to try and do to improve it. Whether it be setting some boundaries, asking less of her, asking more of her, or simply spending more time with her... I think insights into our mother-daughter relationships would do wonders for us all. Mothers and daughters alike.
Let's make Mother's Day count for a change.
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