Just Thinking

21 Mar 2007

Do you ever get the feeling you are turning into your mother? It doesn't happen until you are in your 40s or at least that is my experience and the feeling gets amplified each year especially as you see your own mum turning into an old lady. It's like she leaves a vacuum as she moves into the next phase and you are sucking into it to fill the void.

It is the strangest feeling. I don't struggle against it because it just feels inevitable. Ofcourse we are different in many ways, she is a much better housekeeper than I will ever be, she doesn't rest until the job is finished. Although she would never believe it I am in awe of her ability to get things done and keep up with things.

So it's not so much that I am becoming more like her but I'm becoming THE mother and she is THE grandmother and I'm very aware that my teenage sons and my daughter are on the verge of taking over as the bright young things who will eventually become the newly marrieds and then the new parents and then they will be THE father and THE mother and I will become THE granny, the generational shift , a passing of the baton, life.

Maybe that's why some people don't like to see their aging parents too often because it becomes so obvious that the barrier between us and death, our parents, won't be there for ever. Once they slip away we , the next generation move into their place, the gatekeepers.

This is not supposed to be depressing it's just life isn't it? The trick is, I guess, to enjoy each stage of life because each stage has its joys, its lessons to be learned, its sorrows . Through our children and our parents we can remember how things used to be when we were young and see how they might be in the future when we are old and be grateful that we are here in the middle between these two wonderful groups of people.

5 Responses to “Just Thinking”

  1. I can so relate to this post Jenny....i will turn 40 later in the year and once that would have frightened me but i seem to be in a good place in my life right now and i look forward to settling into the next phase of my life.
    I look at my daughter, who is slowly finding her own wings and it feels like its her time now and i get to watch her become a woman, just as my mum did!!!
    Take care.

  2. My first reality check was when my son, the eldest of my/our children, turned 17. Then it hit me. My grandmother had signed permission for my father, then seventeen and the only child, to join the navy during WW2. I could not imagine going to the recruiter and doing that! My son is now 30 and the rest, save one, are adults! As they were growing up I would envision my role and relationship. In the end, it turned out the same, but very different. Just as parenting a young child is not exactly how you thought it would be, neither is being the mother of adult children. It isn't bad, just different. I look at my parents and in-laws who are all approximately 80, to glean what would be good choices for me and what to eliminate. While I would like to learn from their mistakes, I continue to make my own. I have always been a person that may take a glance backwards, but continues forward with gusto.

  3. There are parts of me that are like my mother and I love that as its a bit like carrying on her spirit, sharing a bit of her with my children and soon my grandchildren, but there are other parts of me that wanted to be different, less stuffy, less old fashioned and that is the part of me that can be carried on by my children after I am gone. The parts of my mom I didn't want to be like have been the areas I have sought to grow in. The parts where I am becoming my mom, well that is the part that I love so well as its like a hug from her, daily. She has been gone for nearly 21 years now.

  4. It is far from depresing, it's wonderful, a lovely post.

  5. I loved this post...such a lovely sentiment.


Thanks so much for taking the time to chat. I don't always have time to reply but I do read every message you leave.