There are lots of moms out there. You might even have had one yourself. Or more than one.
Here are some to cheer or miss or wish they’d been better:
- The One Everyone Wants. Loving, supportive, defending us when needed, encouraging and challenging us, too. Always there.
- The Overburdened Mom. Too many kids, too many jobs, too many issues of her own.
- The Stepmom. She can be either of the first two, just not the one who gave birth to you. This mother might favor her own kids or accept you as if you arose from her body.
- The Big Sister Mom. Usually, the oldest sister, especially if you have an overburdened mom.
- The Nextdoor Neighbor. She might have made you wish she were your own mother.
- The Favorite Teacher Mom. If you had a winning teacher such as this, I don’t need to tell you how much she influenced and helped you.
- The Dad Mom. The double-duty father has to take both roles when the mother is absent or ill. He might be a stay-at-home dad when the mother is the breadwinner, too.
- The Mentor Mom. A supportive guide you find in the workplace.
- The Role Reversal Mom. She expects you to listen to her and, to some degree, be her moral support and caretaker (long before she gets old). You hear stories from her you shouldn’t hear.
- The “I Know Better” Mom/Grandma: She won’t accept the second banana, supportive job you’d like her to take with your kids.
- The Good Mom/Grandma: This lady allows you to grow up whether you have kids of your own or not, and limits her unrequested advice. You are allowed to be an adult, your own person with your own ideas.
- The Mother Who Played Favorites. Yikes is all I can say.
Well, I’ve probably missed a few, including some of the least admirable, but you get the point. I hope the stork deposited you in the lap of the kind of mother you needed. If not, that you found a substitute elsewhere. An impossible job, for sure, but the most essential one on the globe.
A round of applause to all the best of them and perhaps some kindness even for the rest of them.
And to all of you who are mothers, will be, or wish you could be.
The drawing is called Mother and Baby. It comes from a 1923 advertisement for Lydia E. Pinkham’s Vegetable Compound. It was sourced from Wikimedia Commons.