I come from a long line of amazing mothers. Well actually, truth be told, I don’t know anything about the moms more than a few generations back. But my two grandmothers and my mom? You truly couldn’t ask for better mothers.
My mom’s mom had a quiet strength about her. She contracted polio when she was young and it left her permanently disabled. But it didn’t slow her down. I rarely remember her without a smile on her face. She raised four kids with a husband who was frequently on the road. And she doted on her grandchildren. They didn’t live close to me growing up but I always loved going to their home. And I remember so fondly one summer spending a week at her house where she taught me how to sew. Although that term is used very loosely since I can still barely make a pillow. I am 99% sure that is far more reflective of the pupil than the teacher. She died of ovarian cancer when I was in graduate school, but so many things still remind me of her. I love that Lily wants to learn to sew and carry on that part of her legacy.
My dad’s mom was an amazing woman as well. She got married very young and truth be told, she didn’t marry a very nice man. But she raised 7 children who adored her. And had a gaggle of grandkids who felt the same way. Almost every memory I have of her involves food. She was an incredible cook. When we would visit her house she would stand in her kitchen and ask us what we wanted. We might all say different things but she would make them all. From scratch. Chicken and noodles, biscuits and gravy, hamburgers with homemade french fries. And pies. Always pies. Cherry, apple, french silk, banana cream. I would stand beside her and she would hand me pieces of leftover dough to make into cinnamon and sugar snacks. She was the kind of cook that never used a recipe but everything always turned out delicious. She died of a stroke when I was in graduate school, but I like to think I am carrying on her legacy in the kitchen. A much lesser version, but I’m working on it.
And then there is my mom. Many women have complicated relationships with their mothers. I suppose our relationship has had its moments. But they are overwhelmingly outweighed by the good. She set the bar so high as a mom. And the awesome thing about growing up is, I get to see her with my grandkids and recognize again what an amazing mom she is but without all the teenage angst. What I remember most about growing up in our home was that she was always present. When I needed her, she was there. And even when I tried to push her away, she was there. Every single part of me that is a good mom is because of what she and my dad modeled to me. And I am beyond blessed that she continues to pour her legacy into my children nearly every day.
What I love about the women who have gone before me is that I have little parts of them woven throughout my story as a mother. And I am hopeful that all the good parts of me get woven into my girl’s story as a mother as well. And maybe even the stories I tell them of the women who they will never know. Of their great grandmothers who made their grandmother and their mother the women they are today.
What legacy did your grandmothers or mothers leave you? Or what legacy do you hope to leave for your children?
This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Shane Co. The opinions and text are all mine.