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Bairbre & Dara

At what point do adult children stop seeing their mother and start seeing the woman behind the role? Do they ever? I don’t think we can ever fully detach ourselves from seeing our parents as parents first and people second. But when we do peer behind the screen it can be so illuminating in recognising where we’ve come from and what we’ve inherited. I recently did this in a very conscious way as I wanted to acknowledge my mother on the occasion of her 70th birthday.

I knew I was not going to be able to attend her celebration as I am living about as far away as possible from my homeland so I decided to write her a poem to be read out at her birthday party. I wanted to see her clearly so I set aside my mother-son issues and her picture appeared with remarkable clarity. The following is what I came up with.

What My Mother Gave Me

I love strong women.

I respect them.

I admire them.

I married one of them.

That’s what my mother gave me.

 

I have fire in my belly.

I pour pints over people’s heads.

I know what I think.

I bypass bullshit.

That’s what my mother gave me.

 

I look closely at people.

I leave room for their stories.

I am not afraid to hug.

I can set my table for one.

That’s what my mother gave me.

 

I have three brothers.

I am driven mad with love.

I know conflict and pain.

I understand ripples and repercussions.

That’s what my mother gave me.

 

But what have I given her?

What can I give her?

If I could,

I would gift her love.

I would make her know

she is no less

deserving of love

than any of us.

If I could,

I would ask her to love herself.

If I could,

I would make her love herself.

 

I love strong women.

That’s what my mother gave me.

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7 thoughts on “What My Mother Gave Me

  1. Great read.. 🙂
    m

    From: the ClearOut <comment-reply@wordpress.com>
    Reply-To: the ClearOut <comment+_gqyuwb5cpd9avxuwot9w3@comment.wordpress.com>
    Date: Tuesday, 12 July 2016 at 12:35 PM
    To: Matt <matthewpaynter@hotmail.com>
    Subject: [New post] What My Mother Gave Me

    Dara posted: ” At what point do adult children stop seeing their mother and start seeing the woman behind the role? Do they ever? I don’t think we can ever fully detach ourselves from seeing our parents as parents first and people second. But when we do peer behind th”

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