I like to imagine that if I were to someday have a high-powered corporate job (after attending a business school with classes called 'What People Actually DO in High-Powered Corporations'), that there'd be some mentor, someone I would shadow to learn how to handle all the challenging work to come. This person would take me under their wing and prepare me to soar on my own, when the time came.
Since I've never had and, let's face it, NEVER WILL have some high-powered corporate job, I can only think about this job that I have now: motherhood. And how it was under your wing, Mom, that I learned to soar.
Sometimes when I find myself stymied with the girls- what to do, how to do it- I think "what would Mom do?". I usually can't find a specific answer in any recess of my brain since we all know that my brain, even the recesses, are empty of most useful long-term memories (unless you count all the choreography to every dance performance I've ever done since I was 8 and the lyrics to the entire Richard Marx catalogue). Since I totally took for granted how you comforted me during irrational fears or soothed my ego after a friend's bruising or convinced me I could possibly WIPE MY OWN BOTTOM, I still have to figure out the daily details of this job on my own.
But if I find my memories of specific mothering details lacking, I can always, always come up with a strong sense of who you were to me. Of how you felt to me. Of how you made me feel.
Safe. Important. Heard. Loved.
When I think about what I learned from you about this impossible job called mothering, I am able to remember to not get lost in the details of being a mother, to stop beating myself up over my daily imperfections. Though I pray that my daughters' memory banks will be holey in all the right places, I continue to strive to always, always give them the general foundation that you gave me and to let the details flow from there.
Let them know they are safe. They are important. They are heard. They are loved.
Happy Mother's Day, Mom. Thanks for taking me under your wing, even if I took most of it for granted at the time and promptly forgot the rest.
your Clueless But Hopeful Daughter