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Motherless to Mothering: One Woman's Journey to Cope With The Death of A Parent

Updated on December 4, 2010
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Mothers Day & Motherless Daughters Day 2010
Mothers Day & Motherless Daughters Day 2010
Mothers Day & Motherless Daughters Day 2010

DNA is a wonderful thing. Bits of string, chains of traits, a little sugar-and-momma knows best here, a little deoxyribonucleic acid there.

Although mother died when I was just six years old, I have been fortunate to have a few of her writings and pictures. Some of her thoughts on child rearing, belief in God, importance of education…written down for me to refer to many years later.

Now that I am in my forties with a teenage daughter of my own; her writings have meant so much more. It’s interesting to note that her co-valedictorian speech at George Washington Carver HIGH SCHOOL in Pine Bluff Arkansas was written out in detail, many years before her passing. It was kept safely tucked away for me now. Her writings speak about the importance of passing along our beliefs to our children, and somehow she managed to do just that.

Some of her thoughts from youth and adulthood are available to her motherless daughter here today. Not in great abundance, but enough to speak to her feelings and beliefs on topics of importance. Although this was probably not intentional on her part, I’m sure she expected to impart her words of wisdom in person, but I am very grateful that she had the foresight and care to write many down.

Mother was a history buff who attended Arkansas AM&N in the early 60’s. She seemed to believe history is always in the making. Now I'm a believer...


Beyond her words I see her essence in my brothers. My older brother is as committed to family, pursuit of intelligence, and grounded on the need for simplicity in life noted in her writing.

My younger brother as heroic and noble, decisive and real. He seems to have received 90% of the go-getter-step-out-of-the-boat portions of DNA... I long for a little of that too.

What did her DNA pass my way? Well, I see it in my writing, I see it in my mothering of my own daughter, I see it in my almond eyes that peer back at me in the mirror, just above high cheek bones she gave me as well.

This mother’s day I will do my best to recall in as much detail, all I can about my mother. I will thank God for the passing along of so many positive traits to I and my brothers; and subsequently our own children, and theirs, and theirs...I will continue to write as much as I can to keep record for my daughter and those who will carry my DNA in the future.

I will rejoice in the knowledge that I once knew a mother, though I can’t remember it well; -But the nostalgia is as real as the writings she left behind, as well as the DNA she passed along to carry forward into the future.

Happy Mother’s Day & (Motherless Daughters Day too).



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