About 20 years ago I started an article on mothers and daughters with the following:
We’ve said a lot about mothers and daughters. We’ve written about our pain, jealousy and confrontations; about disappointment and loss. Sometimes we celebrate with tales of joy and renewal.
Our mothers inevitably fall short of our childhood ideal of perfection; can we blame them all our lives? Our daughters may scorn our opinions; shall we, hurt, turn our backs on them?
Life is too short. Here I am in my 40s, my mother just past 80, my daughter in her mid-20s. My mother’s mother is long gone. My daughter may never have a daughter of her own. So we’re all we’ve got.
In my grandmother’s time, you put doilies on mahogany tables to protect them. My mother inherited those doilies and now uses them too. Will I? Will my daughter?
That’s as far as I got with this snippet. I think I was too depressed to continue!
Cut to 2015. I’m here, almost laughing. How worried I was, how perplexed. I wish I could go back in time and shout at my silly 40-year-old self: Yes, indeed life is short – too short to stew about this stuff. “Will I this, will she that, will we, won’t we, where’ll we be at??”
I would tell my younger self that my sweet tired mother went to her reward. My brilliant, amazing daughter and I are still speaking! No, she has no daughter (or sons) of her own, and so what? (She does have three adorable kitties, however!)
We go along, we get along, and we do not use doilies. They’re just not necessary.