Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Mothers And Daughters

(My sister, my mother, and me- late 1970's-earlier 1980's)

I am fooling only myself when I say my mother exists now only in the photograph on my bulletin board or in the outline of my hand or in the armful of memories I still hold tight. She lives on in everything I do. Her presence influenced who I was, and her absence influences who I am. Our lives are shaped as much by those who leave us as they are by those who stay. Loss is our legacy. Insight is our gift. Memory is our guide.
-Hope Edelman, U.S. author.

The woman who bore me is no longer alive, but I seem to be her daughter in increasingly profound ways.
-Johnnetta Betsch Cole

Unlike the mother-son relationship, a daughter’s relationship with her mother is something akin to bungee diving. She can stake her claim in the outside world in what looks like total autonomy—in some cases, even “divorce” her mother in a fiery exit from the family—but there is an invisible emotional cord that snaps her back. For always there is the memory of mother, whose judgments are so completely absorbed into the daughter’s identity that she may wonder where Mom leaves off and she begins.
-Victoria Secunda, U.S. psychologist and author.

The myth of independence from the mother is abandoned in mid- life as women learn new routes around the mother—both the mother without and the mother within. A mid-life daughter may reengage with a mother or put new controls on care and set limits to love. But whatever she does, her child’s history is never finished.
-Terri Apter, British social psychologist and author.

A son is a son till he takes him a wife, a daughter is a daughter all of her life.
-Irish Saying

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