Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Who Was My Mother?

Sometimes I have thoughts that don't fit a category, and I don't know how to title the post. Today is such a day. Today I am thinking about my mother. She died when I was ten. I never knew her as a person. I mean I knew she was strict and expected me to mind. I knew she loved my father. I knew she had good friends and enjoyed playing bridge and social events. But I only have the barest intimation of what she thought, of who she really was.

It occurred to me when I was grown that I wished I had known her as an adult. Now I think she would have been a really neat person. Then she was only "Mama." She read and talked to friends and enjoyed music. Who was her favorite band or singer? Marlene Dietrich was high on the list. Humphrey Bogart, Lauren Bacall, and the Barrymores were high class celebrities to her.

So much I don't know, but a few things, I do. One thing I do know: she loved me. She told her cousin Mary Frances that she had taken me to a birthday party when I was three. The children did what children do at parties. "Mary Frances, I was embarrassed for all the other mothers because Gayle was so superior to all the other children."  I had a picture from one such occasion and I thought I looked just as ordinary and plain as all the others. I cannot believe her evaluation was unbiased or clear sighted, but it does speak of her adoration of her only child. There is something truly blessed in such love.

No comments: