Remembering My Mother on Mother’s Day

My Mom

My beautiful Mom in the 1920’s – 1930’s.

For me, there have been too many times I’ve remembered my mother in troubled times with heartfelt struggles and I want it to be different this Mother’s Day. I want to remember her for the beautiful woman that she was and her intelligence. 

She was the first to graduate from high school in her family with a father who could not read nor write and her mother with only a second-grade education. That is not to say, her family was less valuable than anyone else’s.

What they may have lacked in education, they made up for in character and genuine love, at least from my perspective in growing up with them. To this day, my grandmother is the most cherished person I know of and is a big part of who I am today.

With a young family at home, my mother studied to become a Licensed Practical Nurse. I was little, but remember her taking the bus up to Philadelphia for her classes and later on completing her studies through the mail.

Though she got her degree, she never practiced as a nurse but just the fact she completed and aced every test was a testament to her character and conviction.  It made me want to be a nurse growing up but I never had the drive like she did. Instead, my daughter followed in her footsteps and became a Registered Nurse.

She had a lot of dreams she never realized and a lot of love yet to be expressed but it was not to happen in her life’s journey. Instead, she was struck with severe rheumatoid arthritis in her mid-thirties among other health issues that made living for her and those around her difficult.

The challenges I saw her struggle through in my childhood and adult life were hard to understand and left me yearning for the mother – daughter connection I’d seen so many others have. For all the moments I may have missed and dreams of what I wanted with my mother, I tried to pass them on to our daughters.

Life is never perfect and I would never change what I had in my childhood and in my mother. It truly has shown me compassion and understanding in a way I could never have learned, otherwise. For that, I am truly thankful for my beautiful mom and, where ever she is today on the other side, I hope she feels my love and the gratitude I am sending her from the bottom of my heart.

I Love You, Mom ― Happy Mother’s Day And To All Of You!

Pat from the ‘ol kitchen table

Digiprove sealCopyright secured by Digiprove © 2016 Pat Ruppel

14 thoughts on “Remembering My Mother on Mother’s Day

  1. Your Mom was gorgeous, and looked happy, so glad you are able to remember the good things. It always takes a weight off your heart when you can let go. Happy Mothers Day, I am sure your Mom is happy now. Sending hugs to you, :o)

    • Aw, thank you Patricia. I think she’s gorgeous and looks happy, too. I always want to remember her this way. Hope you had a lovely Mother’s Day! Hugs back. xxoo 🙂

    • Thank you, Joanne — so true we are truly blessed with the wonderful mothers God gave us. Hope you had a sweet Mother’s Day. 🙂

    • Thank you, Susan. I’m so happy you enjoyed it and that it touched your heart. We all try to do our best and hope the footprints we leave will help others remember for the short time they remain. God bless and hope you had a special Mother’s Day, my friend.

  2. Hello Pat,

    First of all happy belated Mother’s Day wishes to you, dear, and I hope you had a wonderful time with your children and grandchildren as well on that special occasion too 🙂

    I am very touched by the way you described your mother’s life. What especially caught my attention the most was when you wrote, I quote, “What they may have lacked in education, they made up for in character and genuine love, at least from my perspective in growing up with them. To this day, my grandmother is the most cherished person I know of and is a big part of who I am today.” I perfectly agree with you on the same point, because it’s exactly like this that Mauritius has been evolving as well during period of colonisation. There was no luxury, no greed for money, and the spirit of parenthood and childhood was omnipresent all the time. There was a true interconnection between parents and children and a true human warmth. But today, it’s no more the same since Mauritius evolved with technology, capitalism and huge economic growth, decreasing those human values a little more each and every day.

    I am very proud of your mother and the fact that she succeeded into graduating after all the sacrifices that your grandparents did for her. It wasn’t easy, but for her generation and since she came from a poorer family, she succeeded into fulfilling her parents’ dream, which though she couldn’t achieve for a long time since she had to fulfill her duties with marriage and with raising you and your siblings. See how it’s getting enchained afterwards: When you grew up, you had the same chance as her by getting good education, and you even had a dream in mind into becoming a qualified nurse, but yet, you couldn’t afford your dream since you had to face at your turn marriage and parenthood constraints, and at the same time joy as well. But the fact that you had two children, two daughters to be precised, it was the best gift that God could give you, because your daughters could realize the dream that you had as their mother, but could never achieve during your youth. And you, as a little girl, you fulfilled your mother’s dreams by becoming what you are today with a brilliant career, marriage life, parenthood life, facing all sunshines and rainfalls in your life, but harvesting the fruits of your sacrifices through the success of your daughters 🙂 And now that you became a grandmother of two adorable grandsons, I am sure that your daughters, at their turn, will know the same experience where, though they could fulfill their dreams, they would be constrained though to do some sacrifices too for the sake of their children 🙂

    That’s the gift of motherhood: sacrifice. My mother-in-law for example, is a strong reference when it comes on motherhood. She could be fully qualified since her father was very intelligent intellectually, fully qualified academically and she had that potential within her. However, since she lived in very poor conditions, she couldn’t go to school too much and had to look after her parents, help her elder siblings and look after their grandfather all the time since he turned old. She was also forced to marry someone chosen by her parents and her in-laws, since arranged marriages were within the usages of Hindu families in Mauritius during that period. She had to feed 13 people in one same house since my father-in-law was the eldest of a big family with 5 younger brothers and one younger sister, and she also had to take care of her own in-laws and of her two children in very pitiless conditions. For example, as per what my father-in-law related me, she had to wear the traditional indian sari, light the wooden fire and blow in a huge peace of wood to light on that fire to cook food for all those people. And the worst in all that was that her mother-in-law was very authoritarian and a real “iron lady” who humiliated her all the time. But now, more than 45 years went on since my in-laws got married and now they have a good house to stay in and succeeded into giving a good education to their children, marrying them and becoming grandparents. However, my mother-in-law still has to face my father-in-law’s abusive authority and caprices and still very often cries, but this is nothing compared to what she had been facing during all those years, though she complains a lot with us all the time. But through that hardship, seeing her children succeeding in life and her grandchildren growing up well, healthy and being provided the best education possible, she and my father-in-law can be proud since they are harvesting the fruits of their sacrifices.

    • Thank you, Uma, and hope you had a wonderful Mother’s Day. Do you celebrate it as a holiday like we do?

      Thank you, too, for your kind words about my mother. Though her life took her down a different road that made living hard and difficult, I don’t know that she knew how it would have affected and touched me on many different levels. It launched my life into one of deep spiritual exploration. Sometimes turmoil, even if at your own choosing, can reveal a lot of things we would never have known otherwise. That’s the case for me and I wouldn’t have changed it for anything.

      Life can be difficult, as it was for your mother-in-law. Whether it’s other people, outside influences or just the beliefs we have that we’ve been raised with, we all have choices in what we do with them in how we live our lives. I think it’s what makes living the most fulfilling and beautiful — the process — and we get to do it over and over again. Hugs and thank you for sharing. 🙂

      Remembering my mother and other loved ones that have passed makes me think of when we used to sit on the front porch as kids and sing religious gospel hymns with our grandparents. Here’s one of those songs, “Will The Circle Be Unbroken.”

      • Thank you so much for having shared with me “Will the Circle Be Unbroken”. It’s the first time I hear that lovely Gospel song, and I thought about my brother who would love that song since it has a pinch of country music in it, and since he is a big fan of country music since youth 🙂

        I forgot to tell you, your mother is very beautiful in the picture, and when I see her face, it seems that you inherited her eyes and her smile a lot 🙂 Her face clearly shows the portrait of a beautiful, but bold and brave woman who could go further after having been graduated, but who had to stop everything to care about her children, but fed the hope into transmitting them whatever she couldn’t achieve in her life. She is a true role model for the whole family to remember and it would be a good idea if you could write and publish her biography as a source of inspiration for new mothers and young women facing at the same time the glories of marriage and parenthood, and at the same time their own career goals.

        I also had a look about the lyrics of the song, and when I saw how it related the funeral experienced by a family after the loss of a dear one, I can understand the feeling that you, your siblings and your grandparents felt when you remembered your mother and all your dearest ones who passed away and left us for a better life for God. It’s the same feeling that you have when you hear “Amazing Grace” during funeral ceremony as well.

        By the way, while doing researches about Amazing Grace, I saw the trailer of a 2006 movie of same title, relating the story of a brilliant politician of 18th Century, William Wilberfoce, and his tireless battle of ending Great Britain’s slave trade. I really loved that trailer and would like to share that interesting link with you, where you will see all details about the movie and the story of that wonderful man: http://www.amazinggracemovie.com/

        • I’m glad you liked the song, Uma. It’s one I grew up with and remember. Thank you on my mother being beautiful. You’re sweet – I think she was, too. I’m sure there were a lot of things she would have loved to do but she had emotional issues she couldn’t shake which took over her life and ended up consuming her. I called it a spirit of jealousy.

          Who knows why we choose what we do when we come into this life? But, it’s there. It was hard as a child having and loving my mother but her attention was somewhere else. Because of her, I’ve have learned compassion with eyes looking from the inside out. People and things are not always what they seem. There’s always more going on underneath. For those lessons of what I experienced and chose to learn, I will forever be grateful to her for.

I would love to hear from you. . .thank you for stopping by.