Tonight I venerate mothers; mothers past, mothers present, mothers to be, or those who want to be. I also venerate my own mother who just a few months short of her seventieth birthday passed through the gates of larger life quite unexpectedly.
After enduring the shock and grief any son would certainly have, I began to reflect. My mother was cold, aristocratic and precise. At times I feared her more than the devil himself but as the years went on I came to understand that underneath that cold aristocratic exterior there was a heart which loved deeply. She cared about me and what I would become. She cared about my thoughts and was very concerned about my marriage lest I be disappointed or taken advantage of. Fortunately, her worries were unfounded and simply that of any woman who worries about the future of her child.
I have come to realize that when a woman has a child a new bond forms which takes precedent above all else. Her “calling” becomes her child’s welfare and future success, no matter what. We husbands then step back and take lesser precedence.Oh, it is not that we are not still loved but our child becomes our wife’s new friend and soulmate in a very special way. Like it or not our role is then to love them both without reserve or hesitation, She knows that someday her stewardship will pass to another man or woman and her child will leave her physically, but never emotionally. Her child will always be her child no matter what.
I think my mother was very proud of what I had become. She died knowing her child, her baby, had become self sufficient and capable of looking out for himself and that the woman to whom she had entrusted him loved him deeply and would make him her child also. And that in time the torch would pass to another baby who would then take center stage, would become mamas’s special task and grow up all too soon to be entrusted to yet another.
Pablo Picasso ” Mother and Child” (1901) from his “blue” period. It is in the public domain,