When Daughters Become Mothers Too

I have a serious question for you:

(and then a brief piece of sharing)

If you have an adult daughter or daughter-in-law in your life who is herself a mother now, do you acknowledge her on Mothers Day?

 If so, how? 

And if you do not; can you please share with me what your belief is about this?

It’s been over 35 years since my husband & I were gifted with our two daughters. While they were growing up Mother’s Day for me always started on Friday evening after getting home from work, and lasting until bedtime Sunday night. Mother’s Day. As the Queen for the weekend I would be pampered, cherished, and able to do whatever it was I pleased. This included where and what I wanted to eat, and when of course. My food choices varied over the years depending on cravings and our growing family budget.  The weekend start would find my daughters and husband in cahoots and great secrecy planning my weekend. My Mother’s Day would always began with our two girls  bringing toast, orange juice, and with the help of their daddy, coffee and my mom’s fruit salad to me in bed. The girls were not allowed to use the stove in those early days of Breakfast In Bed;  albeit hot breakfasts could never hold a candle to the beautiful tray my babies would set for me. Having both my mom and my mom in law represented on the tray with a vase and linen napkins that were once theirs helped some with  my own mom being a distance away. Wee would typically just be able to talk on the phone on Mother’s Day which did help me to feel nearer to her.  Always the girls would find the coolest and most different foliage to create a bouquet to adorn the tray,along with the cloth napkins and my Sunday paper. (Advertisements always removed) the girls would quietly knock on the door and creep in singing in their light & lyrical little peeping voices: “Happy Mothers Day Mommy!! “

This weekend I realize its been about 19 years ago our daughter #1 gifted our family with an angel. My first baby gave me a gift that I had been waiting for all my life. Since childhood I had always wanted to be a grandmother, I could not wait to be a grandma and even as young as 4 years old I remember play acting with mybaby dolls as their Nana. Somehow as a small child the whole logistic issue of needing to be a mommy first  skipped my reasong ( But that desire did in fact come later) 

The week in 1992 that  we learned my own mother was dying of terminal – final stages  -of lung cancer. Simply stated I was devastated. It had been just a year prior that we had moved back to my hometown bringing us just  5 minutes away from her. God works in some amazing ways.  That week while we trying to go on with every day living and managing my own mom dying we received a phone call from Iwukuni Japan. This was where our daughter #1 was stationed with her Marine Corps Jarhead husband. Calls from Japan were luxuries, and we had just spoke the day before. Somewhat feeling a sense of walking through fog as I listened on speaker phone as our daughter #1 told us that we were to become grandparents together. Finally. ( My husband at the time already had 4 grandchildren. I am not his 1st wife, but am his last) It was the most exciting news we had heard since the news of her own impending birth and that of her sisters.  The bitter-sweetness of discovering the news that I was to lose my mom and be blessed with a grandchild-  all in the same week – was almost too much to bear. But very soon I saw that my grandchild is my angel – heaven-sent. A baby girl we would learn a few month later through her very first photograph. That of an ultra-sound.

Just about 6 years later our immediate family was to grow by two more feet. Our daughter #2 blessed us with our 2nd grand baby from our own tiny family. This now would make 7 in total with D.”s five grand children who are just as much mine. (We’re currently at the count and the wonder of 8 grand children and one great grand baby boy)  Our daughter #2 gifted this Nana with her only grandson. Its been such an exciting thing watching this young man grow from infant to young man (12 yrs of age) I did not meet my step son until he almost 9 yrs of age, all those early years when a child is forming the “who” they are to become I was not privy to. Having the absolute gift and delight of getting this chance to see a baby boy become a vibrant giving back to the world young man is pretty special.

My two daughters who I think about daily, and rarely does a day go by that I don’t hear from one or both have made my adult years the best part of my life. I never have had to question who I am, or what I was doing with my life because I knew. I knew then and I know now that my children are the best work of my life. I know that my husband & I have gifted our family’s, this world, and our communities with two of the brightest and most outwardly giving young women I am proud to know. Their own personal successes are not limited to, but most assuredly include the gifts of our two grandchildren. My lights.

My mother never acknowledged me on Mothers Day. It was her day. I never actually gave it a thought. Even when my own daughters became new mommy’s and I celebrate their mommyhood on Mother’s Day it never occurred to me that I could be creating a bit of a tiff in my family. Actually that is not so, it was with my son in  laws family. His mother, my daughter #1’s mother in law believed I was committing a sacrilege by honoring my daughters also on Mother’s Day. She felt it was taking away something from the elder mothers and that it just should not take place. Although beyond that her tongue always seemed tied on this point.

I was never on the fence about this issue personally. I continue to celebrate this holiday that is perfectly intended to honor my daughters just as much as it is to honor my late mother, and mother – in -law. I am still  quiteb affled by my daughter’s now ex-mother -in laws’ ttitude and beliefs. It has never been something I can reconcile myself with. I don’t know why these small acts on my own to celebrate the fact that my female children are mothers too. I think its quite a sweet thing being able to share thos wonder of Motherhood with my now dult dauughters who are now also mommy’s. An amazing way to bond, another gift of bonding material for us to work with.

 So, what about you?  Do you celebrate your own children’s parenting on Mothers and Fathers Day?  Please share. I really am curious about this question.

And while I am writing about my two beautiful babies who are in my alter ego version of themselves now adult women with babies of their own I want to publicly celebrate the incredible ways of their own parenting, that of which I adore. You are both excellent parents with amazing memories you have and are creating for your own children. Your babies who are the next generational gifts to this world – from you both.

 Happy Mother’s Day A & J:  from your daddy & your mommy~ Thank you both!!  

This is for you both~

I love that you loved all of my “art”

though I’m sure it was uglier than a pile of warts.

From pottery to painting to paper mache,

you even liked that drawing of me and Nick Lachey.

But, come on, at this point it’s all older than vintage,

so I think it’s time to take it down from the fridge.

©tjhelser 2012

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11 thoughts on “When Daughters Become Mothers Too

  1. My daughter has not become a mom yet, but my oldest son and daughter-in-law have given me 4 wonderful grandchildren, two came with her and two by my son. I give her a gift and a card thanking her for being mom to the most important people in my life. Since they are usually with me for MD and a lot of the attention goes to me, I want her to know she is appreciated too. Good post:)

    • Thank you for such kind comments. I a=love that you responded, i have been curious what mom 0in laws were doing when it comes to their daughter in laws.

      I like that you recognize your grandchildren’s mother, that alone is reason enough. She is very lucky to have you~

  2. Pingback: Who Am I? part 2… « My Loopy World

  3. On Mother’s Day, we can share the celebration with ALL the mothers in our lives ~ my mother preferred it that way, saying that Mother’s Day belonged to mothers who were still actively involved in raising young children.

    • I like your mothers thinking. There is a lot to be said for focusing on those still in the trenches.
      There are times when mothering a small child feels like you’re alone, its nice that they are celebrated in ways that are meant just for them.

  4. When my daughter had her first child, I made a big deal about celebrating Mother’s Day but after that it kind of got lost in the grandmothers and great-grandmothers being celebrated on Mother’s Day. It’s a shame, I know but she doesn’t feel slighted. Her little daughters (8 and 4) are having a ball making things for mom. It’s so sweet.

    • I love that the elders are more celebrated in your family. Your daughtr does not feel slighted I’m sure because she watches you, her grand, and great grand over the years and knows her time is coming. How wonderful for those little girls to see such awesome customs and to particpate in them..

  5. What a wonderful post – full of beautiful memories, and future inspiration (for my future daughter-in-law if that happens! You are so right about acknowledging the motherhood of daughters.
    And today I was also thinking of all those mothers who have lost children – this must be a terrible day for them but this had never occurred to me before….

    • Thanks so much Jules. I cannot express to you how much this means comng from you. I agree Its an very bittersweet day for moms who have lost children before them. It is an dstrike against mother nature. I watched my mom each year once I became a mom for signs of grief over losinbg my older sister. The signs were there but only ones I think another mom could spot. I’m so grateful we did not lose or daughter #2 during emergency brain surgery 3 years ago. It was a close call and the worst nightmare of our lives. You are a good person to prompt this thinking on my part. Thank you, I should never ever forget how much I have to be grateful for but especially on Mothers Day.

      Did I wish you a Happy one?

  6. This is a lovely story, and you are indeed blessed. Your family is lovely, and your descriptions of them so poignant. I feel blessed to hear of them in this loving tribute. You are a gem, my friend. Always remember that — a treasure here in the most unlikely of places. I was sure I would not meet anyone, and then that I wouldn’t meet anyone who thinks along the same lines as I do. And you are right here. I love you, my bloggy sister. 😎

    • I soo love this, my bloggy sister. We now have bloggy sisters and bliblings. Too cool. You know how I feel about finding you but it never is a bad thing to be repetitive when telling one another how we feel about them and why. Because you are so much my kindred sister I absolutely am cherishing our friendship. I love you too my sweet friend and soul sister~

You are most welcome to share your thoughts, comments, and/or complaints here. Know though complaints are only handled on the 2nd Tuesday of the week.~ The Management

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