There are many movies and books written about the relationship between Mothers and Daughters.: Joy Luck Club, Steel Magnolias, Terms of Endearment. And then there are movies like Mommie Dearest ( Let’s just say my greatest fear as a mom is that I might become a Mommie Dearest!)
There is something crazy about moms and daughters- they can fight, hug, cry and laugh together all within 15 minutes- and wrap up the day by going shopping or to a movie!! (You know what I am talking about,,, sisters do it too). On a side note, I love that my daughters are honest with me- they tell me when my hair looks bad, my jeans are too tight or my shoes are too Grandma-ish. They save me from going out into the world looking too much like a “Mom”.
It goes much deeper than trivial activities like shopping and movie going. There is an understanding between mothers and daughters: the unconditional love and understanding of what it means to be a woman. No words, just understanding (at least on my part as a mom)- I get it. I know what it feels like to wonder if I ‘ll get asked to Homecoming, will anyone want me? Will I be invited to parties? Am I pretty enough, funny enough,,,and the list goes on. Yes, I remember .
I know it is difficult for men to understand, but as much as we cry, we women are quite strong. As the title of one of the movies mentioned earlier suggests: we are “Delicate as Magnolias, yet Tough as steel” -Steel Magnolias.
If you are a mother of a daughter, you most likely have shed a few tears for her: the first time she didn’t get invited to a birthday party, when her boyfriend broke up with her or when she was hurt beyond words and there was nothing you could do to take away the pain. But you held it together for the sake of your child. And you didn’t let her see. Or maybe you did at times. Your mother did the same for you.
Some of us have experienced more desperate times , similar to M’Lynn (Sally Field) and her daughter Shelby (Julia Roberts) in Steel Magnolias. I am reminded of one of the first scenes when Shelby is in the salon chair and starts freaking out, sweating, choking as a result of her diabetes. – Remember how Calm her mother M’Lynn remained??? She was scared but yet remained calm for the sake of her child. We all know the end of the Mother- Daughter story and we were proud yet compassionate for our heroine M’Lynn for never leaving her daughter’s side. She endured the pain and never stepped away. She was tender hearted, devastated but remained tough as nails.
Dr Emerson Eggerichs (Love and Respect Ministries) once reminded me of a historical fact during a difficult time in my life:
During the Nazi persecution, many of the Jewish mothers had to remained composed while their children clung to their legs. The mothers refused to panic or breakdown because they knew it was crucial that their children experience a relative peace. He had shared how he admired the incredible fortitude and strength of these mothers.
The reminder of those women has helped me get through some very tough times without showing my panic or anxiety to my children. If they can do it, so can I. And so Can You.