I grew up in a family totally dominated by women, a true matriarchy, if you will. My great grandfather left when his infant son died, leaving my great grandmother and her little daughter, my grandmother alone to fend for themselves. This is my great grandmother here in 1936 with my mother who was 4 at the time.My grandmother also ended up on her own but not until the children were mostly grown. I never met my grandfather, though, and in my world, she was the queen of the family. This is a picture of my grandmother with my mother on a picnic. My mother would have been almost 6 and I'm assuming my grandfather took the photo.
My own father left when I was around 8 and for most of my life the dinner table, holidays and vacations were inhabited by women. I grew up thinking that there was nothing a woman couldn't do because in my life, the women did everything that men would have done. They worked, they mowed lawns, they drove through the night and they paid the bills. This is my mom at 21 when I was about 3 weeks old in 1954. Doesn't she look young?
At the ripe old age of 22 here is my mom with me at the beach the next spring or summer. And yes, she deliberately raised us to be beach bunnies.
All these amazing women are gone now, all buried next to each other, in fact at a local graveyard where I am about to go and deliver some flowers. These ladies were strong and funny, smart and caring and I miss them all, especially on Mother's Day. Other families may have shrugged off Mother's Day as a "Hallmark Holiday" but in my family it was a day when the woman of the house got to be celebrated and pampered in a big way. No one loved to celebrate Mother's Day more than my own mother and even though she's been gone 9 long years now we always lift a glass in her honor and tell a few good stories so her legacy lives on.
Happy Mother's Day to all who celebrate it today!