As Mother’s Day approaches and I come to terms with some complicated feelings of the legacies left I shared some of my thoughts on twitter this morning and as usual connected with some wonderful and wise tweeps! I am working on a new post about my mother and in the meantime I am re-posting “Mom on my Mind”.
My mother, Anna Beecher, born on December 31, 1918 and raised in squalor and neglect on the lower East Side of New York City, spent a life time practicing the art of making an imposing impression on others.
From the ghettos to her sprawling colonial on an acre in Westchester County, NY, my mother always made an impact, be it positive or negative. Blessed with classic beauty, a statuesque figure, intelligence and killer survival instincts Anna Beecher was the object of adoration, respect, gossip and, in some instances, unrequited lust amongst the upper middle class peer group she married into.
As what would be her 91st birthday approaches on New Year’s Eve, I wrestle with the memory of Mom and the legacy she left. As the last member of my family of orientation, standing, I inherit all rights to rewrite history any way I please. As an adult women with miles of road tread I have learned that it is destructive and undermining to hang on to old scripts, roles and wounds of childhood that leave us spinning wheels and getting nowhere. I am always turned off by those who blame all of their misfortune on the tyranny of long dead parents.
We all have the power and responsibility to move on after brushing ourselves off and rewriting our own scripts.
Instead of blogging about all of the sordid details of my childhood (maybe in a later blog) I have decided to post the “best of Mom” by sharing some of the lessons I learned. Happy New Year’s.
- Never belittle yourself. When feeling intimidated by some one more powerful than you just picture them urinating.
- Never go to an air conditioned movie or restaurant on a summer night with out a “little sweater” on your arm.
- Don’t buy crap at department store sales. Only buy what you would buy if not on sale. Stay true to your “color way” and actual size.
- Lower your expectations when traveling and note that “Everything that possibly can go wrong will go wrong.”
- Thin people never clean up other people’s plates.
- If you are shaped like a pear never wear maxi skirts to temple on the high holidays.
- You will still live if you rescind an invitation to in laws for Thanksgiving the day before.
- You can always barrel your way to a power table at any restaurant by screaming aloud, “Don’t seat me in Siberia”
- Anti depressants can work their magic at any age. In my mother’s last year of life we were able to connect and embrace thanks to the gift of Prozac.
- Hitch your dream to the stars and never give up.