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Happy Mother's Day to All - Yes, Even You Men Out There!
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Judith L London, PhD posted:
Mother's Day usually triggers us to think about our mother's or for many women, being a mother. I keep seeing how I become more like my mother as time goes by. Anyone care to share some stories?

Judy
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davedsel57 responded:
My mother passed away on September 22, 2000 from heart failure at age 82. She was12 years older than my dad.

My mother was a 4' 11" strong woman. Her parents and 3 of her 5 sisters immigrated from Poland in the early 1910's, several years prior to her birth in Buffalo, NY. My grandparents never learned English and I vividly remember the family having conversations that I never understood.

As with many people, the fondest memories I have of my mother are in the kitchen. She was an excellent cook and baker, and delighted in having lots of family over and feeding them. Christmas cookies were the highlight of the year for her. She started making doughs in September and produced more cookies than any bakery I know. The cookies were given as gifts each year and tasted better than those from any gourmet shop. My mother made at least 20 or 30 varieties - cut-outs (dark ginger and regular sugar), bars, drop cookies, thumb-prints, etc. At Christmas time each year I get a strong craving for cut-out cookies. I've searched and just can't find the taste I grew up with. What I have now realized is that I am craving my mother's cut-out cookies.

Every Saturday night we would have steak, salad with thousand island dressing, french fries (crinkle cut, of course) and butterflake biscuits. My mother would use her two large cast-iron frying pans to render the steak fat and fry the steaks while a third was in use to deep-fry the french fries.

My mother taught me many things. She taught me to use both hands when doing tasks because that's why God gave me two hands. She taught me to never give up. She taught me to persevere through any trial. My mother had severe arthritis throughout her body and especially her spine. She baked all those cookies and cooked those fabulous meals despite high levels of chronic pain. Finally in her 70's she gave up baking and gave me all of her cookie cutters. Those are a treasure stored in our cabinet now, and each one has a special memory.

My mother never graduated from high school, but did go to cooking school for a few years. Even without a diploma I considered my mother to be a genius. She had more common sense and clarity of mind than many folks with doctorate degrees.

I do my best in life to emulate many of the qualities my mother had. Unfortunately, I inherited the high levels of chronic pain due to arthritis and serious spine problems, but I try to rise above circumstances and survive just as my mother did.

My mother shared all of her values with me, taught me to cook and taught me to be use common sense. Most of all, my mother taught me to become the adult that I am and I will always be thankful for that.
Click on my user name or avatar picture to read my story.

Blessings, Dave
 
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cjh1203 responded:
Dave, what a beautiful tribute to your mother. She sounds like an extraordinary woman.

I'm very fortunate that my mother is alive and very healthy at 83. It was her brother's Alzheimer's that first brought me to this board. She has always taken care of herself, physically and mentally, and it seems to have paid off very well. In the last several years, she has learned French and Spanish, quilting and jewelry-making, and she reads voraciously and plays lots of mind-building games online. The only medication she takes is for osteoporosis, which is amazing at her age.

I learned from my mother to be polite and gracious, and basic manners for life. She and my dad gave us a very strong sense of right and wrong. She instilled in my sisters and me a love of reading, a love of games -- the first card game she ever taught us was blackjack -- and a generous spirit. She has some great qualities that I didn't inherit, unfortunately, such as strong will-power, and never putting off anything that needs to be done.

She stopped driving a few years ago because she started getting terrible panic attacks when she got behind the wheel, so I'm her driver now. We get to spend a lot of time together because of that, and it's a great way for us to get to know each other as people, rather than mother and daughter.

Like you, Judy, I see myself getting more like my mother, but not always in the best ways! Can you tell us more about your mother?

To everyone who is or has a mother, happy Mother's Day.

Carol
 
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Judith L London, PhD replied to cjh1203's response:
Hi Carol and Dave and Everyone,

Really enjoyed your sharing about your mothers. My mother passed away 23 years ago, before something like Alzheimer's could begin. She was a woman ahead of her time - employed full-time, full of passion and vigor, and alot of laughter. She was an inspiration for me. I've written an essay about her which might appear in a local newspaper -on the theme of how we become like our mothers in many respects - even those parts we want to avoid.

Hope everyone has a meaningful Mother's Day,

Judy


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