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She Caused Me To Take A Second Look At Myself........

Updated on September 4, 2011

A True Gift

Put a bow on this.

Wrap it in pretty paper.

Hang it on the wall.

Encrust it with jewels.

This is a cherished gift........

It is about our dreams.......
It is about our dreams.......

My Own Daughters

How might she see life..........

I encouraged her independence.

I rooted for her to break through barriers that I could not.

She would carry the torch of my voice.

I rallied behind her..........saying, " you go girl", " girl power' and other such things.

Still, as I said those things, I saw her there, in her girlhood, the face that she showed at discovering her first bicycle, playing with dolls, the first dancing dress, thinking thoughts that never belonged to my simple world, fashion, shoes, glamour, education...........

I knew,.....though it was painful......that she saw me as a backwoods tomboy.

I knew that she, a child of the modern world......dismissed my backwoods upbringing.

She so easily dismissed me.............and I could find no fault with her thinking.

Who among her peers have ever ever heard of chicken pee, bull horns, pork belly, hay stalks, calf manure, as medicine......who among her crowd would have heard of or embraced folk tales?

Still, in my fear, I released her to the world, it was my duty as her Mother. This, allowing, this, welcoming, this, embracing of a newer path, a more modern world. It was my duty, to give this child to a newer world. It came with great remorse.

The same world that would leave me behind and even laugh at me and the things I had embraced.

At some level, I welcomed her passage, knowing I would be left behind. She was going on....beyond my steps.....she would increase the steps.......she would add to the building.

She was the best of me......going forward.....SHE was my voice......screaming to be heard.......but she did not know this thing, she did not know that my hopes were inside her, she did not know, I was counting on her to release us all, this child could not have known of the burdens she and her sisters put upon me, NO, she must not know, the weight would only hold her back, and SHE must fly with only a breath at her wings......she was of her own self, let her take all credit.

She was worthy of things I could not have, she was better than me.........what parent has not felt this?

I choked back tears, driving her off to college, laughing with her and her best friend. I was quiet, because I dared not speak, until we were alone, and my husband said to me.........let it can cry now, let her find her way.............she had NO idea what the paving of her road had cost me.........

How I child had surpassed me. It was bittersweet, my child was more than me, she would need me no more............go my child......go and become, please, remember me, your backwoods mother.......a mere simpleton...........soar my child, soar.........but take time to remember the one who gave you wings,........I cried tears that she would never see. I only thought I was prepared to lose her to the world, to be replaced by her peers. Her visit, in the years to come, would be enough to heal me...........if only, she would come and be .......... It would be alot, that I asked of her, the sitting beside of me, holding my hand, the remembering of the woman who was assigned to be her mother. She would think, sitting beside me, meant forsaking her friends, her education, her own personal self..............a thing, I would never have asked of her.

It must be a great cost for the both of us......this tuggle.....between yesterday and tomorrow.

I was not prepared for the shame she would have for me, for the way she would hide me away, like a dirty secret. Tears were choked back, until the damn broke under pressure.......then they flowed like a river. Still, I loved her too much, to think her guilty of daughter was beyond this. If there were a flaw in her, my own fingerprint must be upon it.

There must be a vision of my own face in this reflection. How had I, I must ask, failed such a one? The daughter who carried the voice of tomorrow?........How, a woman such as me. must be deemed inadequate, backwood, unknowing, even the hated word,........ignorant........danced.

At any point, during her infancy, her girlhood, her teenage years, her college days, her any point, I would lay down all of my tomorrows for this child.........and she called me ' ignorant'.

My tears were cried among the pine, the cedars, the oak and the cougar. No person could bear their witness. No animal would speak of it.

Still, she was my child. And I had the love of a mother for her. I swallowed it all.

Her world is already, expanding....
Her world is already, expanding....

She Would Lead

My daughter, of modern times, would lead her sisters forward. They, as young women, would embrace, ( for the first time ?...)  a new way. Modern thinking, equality,science, social justice, compassion....... these would all be on their side. Philosophers of great renown would bring life to her voice...........MY daughter would be educated.

MY daughter would have my blessing..........embrace your SELF.........I would not hold MY daughter back. She was too good, too educated, too forward in her thinking, for my simple works.

Is this not, what all others wished for their daughters.......................go beyond us?

Would it not be, MY daughter, alone, who "understood"?

I had sent her out there to embrace a better life.

Isn't this what mothers do?

Should we expect to be taken along?

Home is where you go to do laundry and to eat.
Home is where you go to do laundry and to eat.

How Kind of Her

She came 'home', during that holiday.

She bestowed upon me, the gift of her presence. I was so lucky to have her in the house. She appeared to me, as a favor.

I loved her..........I supported her voice.........these things were not in question.

How she now seemed to pity me, how she must tolerate me, how she might now, present me with her worldly generosity, this attitude was in question and it was met with dare she, this slip of a girl, whose being was paid upon by my back............look down on me!

Did this girl not care, that I was enduring another year of retail to support her education? Did she not know, that it was ME who held the purse strings? Did she really want to face the wrath of Mama? Did this liberated young woman not know that her future was held by an old foggie that she was insulting? Oh, this child....the keeper of my tomorrows.........

In the anger, the mistrust, the crossed signals.........she was mine........that was the single point that could not be severed, it could not be forgotten, it bound us together..........this young independant, vibrant woman, this voice of tomorrow, was my own little girl. She once reached for me from her crib. She once trusted me.....believed in me...she once thought I could make life could I have led her astray? She once thought, that it was I who would protect her tomorrows......she was my own child. How could it have come to this battle of wills? How could it have become so distorted?

How, God,

Where God,

Tell me God,

at what point, did I lose this child?

Show it to me , so I can pay my repentance.................tell Me! At what crossroad, did I lose her?

At WHAT point, did I take the wrong WHAT junction? If only, I could retrace each step in her journey.

How could this child, whom I had encouraged, who I had cheered on, now think that she was above me? How dare she think I knew nothing. I had , after all, brought her through her infancy, her childhood, I had led her through the teen years.......didn't I step quietly aside, while she preferred the company of college friends. Didn't her Dad and I still aid her, feed her, maintain her vehicle? Had we gone from beloved parents to mere providers?

This discord, this argument, this battle of wills went on silently, until my educated daughter presented me with the greatest of gifts..............she, had learned to understand me.

This is an accurate and true measure of her words to me...............a great and humble gift. I treasure both the words and the own child. As memory serves me, and it can be faulty, it was during her second year of college.

The Words Are Years Older Now.......

These words, at my child's hand........have have I and my daughter.

I cherish them...........I share them ONLY to give hope to other mothers. They boast of no triumph, of no battle, of no ceremony..............only of the appreciation that a child can have for the parent, and how difficult is the telling........for us all.

Until I read these words, written at her own hand.................a most treasured memento, tucked away in my bible, I did not know of my value. My modern, educated, child of the world, had honored me............there would be no greater gift than this.

IF I Had A Message..........

If I knew great words, bringing comfort and encouragement...............if I knew............

it would be............present yourself to your children as you are.

They will allow for parental mistakes...........they will allow for human weakness.......they will cross barriers that you could not.

Hold fast to yesterday, and give tomorrow to your children.

They too, hold a voice in history.

They learn many of the same lessons that we too, learned. Our elders were not the dummies, we once thought. Though, I penned no so such letter, my maturing daughter brought me full circle also.

My daughter said.........
My daughter said.........

My Daughter Said...............

Mama, when the professor asked us about difficult decisions, encouraging us to empathise, there you were with your tale of King David, you called him the "boy warrior". You said, he overcame obstacles and you always root for the underdog. I have learned what the underdog is.

When he asked us to imagine having to decide between paying the mortage and substaining your family, .........there you were.........saying you have no money until your obligations are paid.

When the scholar asked us to defend what we believed ,..........there you were, saying, the matter lies within our own heart. It is the degree to which you believe, do you believe enough to stand behind it........I see your message front of my scholars.

Mama, when the professor suggested, tough economic situations......there you were, saying mothers face hard choices. It was then, I remembered the prom dresses, the shoes, the handbags, while you drove an old car.

When the professor invoked us to stretch our imaginations, daring us to dream beyond reality, I saw you there, saying, 'what do you think", and " is there anything else you would like to consider"? I saw you on the bar-stool, you were wearing blue........Mama, the vision is locked in my memory.

Mama, I realize the price you and Dad, have paid for my education. I know, you have given up cars, trucks, land, and dreams............I know Mama, that YOU are as smart as any professor I will ever have. I understand, now Mama, that you have given me your own clipped wings, hoping that I will take flight and soar. I know now that you too had wings, and you chose to flutter beside the nest. I understand now, finally, why you said, " I am the first person who loved you".

I now know, that your old time folklore came from those you loved and those who grounded you, and even from those who held you back. It is easy to see now, that you would not allow us to be held back. Mama, you know things that professors have never seen.

Mama, I now know, how you loved me.

I thank you Mama, as never before, for wishing the the very best. Only now, do I see the cost.

Only now, being removed from it, do I see its value.

Only when I meet a man, who deserves me, will I marry him. I learned that from you and from Daddy.

I also know, that during family reunions, you will not allow pressures to be placed on me, regarding these things. Now, I know , Mama, what I am to you, and that you have never been too angry with me to protect me.

Now, I know, that no matter how much money I make, no matter how comfortable my apartment is, your home is always for me also.

A lot of people march to a different drum, but I know now, that drum is being beaten by mothers who love their children.

Only now, do I understand, that you stifled your words, so that I could speak mine.

I see my girlfriends and their mothers, and I am glad, that you are my Mom!

Mama, even though there is not such a man in my life, and maybe there will never be, I know now why you love Daddy so .....not because you are afraid of being alone, but because you have the courage to be beside a man, telling him when his view is distorted, calling him to the carpet, exposing his flaws. I know, Mama, that a lesser man could not love you, as Daddy does. I know, and so do my sisters, that he loves you. I see now Mama, the backbone it really takes, for a woman to stand up and say " I run this house"......I see now, that you were about protecting us, because you at some point had been a victim. I see, now , that story is personal to you.

I understand now, as never before, when you said, " beware the long claws" childish of me to think it was of fingernails.

Now, Mama, I know what it means, the greatest gift a man can give to his children, is to love their mother..........I know what this means.

I Love You Mama. I Love You for the broken Chevy's, the questionable Oldsmobile, the forsaking Fords.............I love you Mama, standing in your faded blue jeans, smiling at me in my prom dress with the expensive shoes. Now, Mama, I see, how a woman like you could love a man like Daddy. I am sorry, that I once thought of him as the means to an other's labor.

I know you can make me right before him........will you.............will you tell him, how much I have come to appreciate his skills? Will you tell him, that now, I understand he is a craftsman? Mama, I can't...............I am begging you.........will you make me right before Daddy? Please Mama? tell him, he is not stupid, and common as I once said, he is gifted. Now, I understand, what it is to build buildings. I know now, what it meant for Daddy to say, " my girls, are not allowed inside that areana, for any reason", now, I know, it was not that he was against our church youth group, he knew the building was not safe.

Mama, tell him, I am sorry that I did not believe him when he said the arena was not safe..........he built it.............he should know, and he is worthy of my trust and respect...........please tell him, he will listen to you............he always does. You are the light of his world. Daddy always listens to you....

Not until I heard your quiet voice in the ecohes..........did I understand

Now, I know, why you like the word, nest, now, I like it too. It means safety.

that my Mama was on Mama, talk on...................

I understand this now.

I just Love You!

My daughter, Alex, as a young woman.
My daughter, Alex, as a young woman.

Children of the World

I am no scholar, I speak not of the great things..........I am no example...........

I only know, that I gave my daughter her wings, and she returned to my nest.

I hope, that it offers you, a struggling parent, some measure of hope and comfort.

Strange Things

There are times, as a young mother, or of the mother of young children, that you wish for silence.

There were days, that I wanted to shout.........stop calling me.

Later, there are days, when the title, " Mom" simply................musical to the ears.

Oh, to have my children young again, at my knee, or elbow, tugging at my skirt or pant leg.........just one more sweet time........

" I now, know, Mom," is worth settling for!


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    • Apostle Jack profile image

      Apostle Jack 6 years ago from Atlanta Ga

      Recognition,to become aware,is a blessing.

    • onegoodwoman profile image

      onegoodwoman 6 years ago from A small southern town

      Yes, Apostle.......

      she reminded me of this, also..

      Thanks for reading.

    • Apostle Jack profile image

      Apostle Jack 6 years ago from Atlanta Ga

      Sometimes we all need to take a second turn of the head,and pay more attention to what is there.Sometimes one can't see for looking the wrong way.

    • onegoodwoman profile image

      onegoodwoman 7 years ago from A small southern town


      I wish you great joy with your daughter.

      As they grown into the teens, it becomes a bit

      more difficult to savor every moment!

      Thanks for coming by to read my hub.

    • saket71 profile image

      saket71 7 years ago from Delhi, India

      Truthfully thought and beautifully written. Every night as my daughter goes to sleep, I look at her and promise to myself that I will never ever want to tell her what is good for her, will find a way so that she could on her own work out on what is really good for her, as Nietzsche said, This in my way, what is your way? there is no The Way." I wish her independence, and at the same time, I wish to savor every moment till the time she decides to leave the nest.

    • onegoodwoman profile image

      onegoodwoman 7 years ago from A small southern town


      Welcome to my hub!

      I am delighted that you enjoyed it.

      It is a true story. Mothers and daughters

      around the world go through a similar dance~~~

      I just wrote mine down.

      Thanks for coming to read it.

    • Valeed profile image

      Valeed 7 years ago from Pakistan

      Awww such an amazing piece of work :)

      I really enjoyed every bit of it. Keeping sharing your thoughts with us. Rated it up and will be curiously waiting for your upcomming hubs. God bless you!

    • onegoodwoman profile image

      onegoodwoman 7 years ago from A small southern town


      Long time, no see! It is good

      to have you hear. Glad you liked it.

    • daydreamer13 profile image

      daydreamer13 7 years ago

      Well said. Good hub!

    • onegoodwoman profile image

      onegoodwoman 7 years ago from A small southern town



      My daughter told me just yesterday,

      that she had read this. At the beginning

      she thought I was angry with her! She

      was pleasantly surprised by the ending.

      You may experience similiar things in

      the coming years......brace yourself

      for the ride, it as just as my Grandmother

      said, " the road turns ahead".

      Thanks for coming!

    • breathe2travel profile image

      breathe2travel 7 years ago from Gulf Coast, USA

      beautiful. useful. posted to my FB wall.

      I am a mother of five young children & hold this dear.

      Thank you for being transparent. :)

    • onegoodwoman profile image

      onegoodwoman 7 years ago from A small southern town

      Denise Mohan,

      It is good to have a new reader.

      Not having sons, I can't make a comparison.

      It is a great blessing to have good kids!

    • onegoodwoman profile image

      onegoodwoman 7 years ago from A small southern town

      Brother Dave,

      Thanks for reading....

      It is a most rewarding journey,

      leading them into adulthood.

    • denise mohan profile image

      denise mohan 7 years ago from California

      Feel you all the way girlfriend. I have 2 girls and 1 boy but girls are very different with mothers. They are all grown now and have come around at different times. Sometimes it takes a very long time to understand what has been given and shared. But they did all finally come around. Sometimes it just takes time.

    • Dave Mathews profile image

      Dave Mathews 7 years ago from NORTH YORK,ONTARIO,CANADA

      It is only that time when they return to the nest that we truly know whether we have really done our best or screwed up, but we will know.

      Brother Dave.

    • onegoodwoman profile image

      onegoodwoman 7 years ago from A small southern town


      Yes, we do.......

      thank you for coming by to read!

    • onegoodwoman profile image

      onegoodwoman 7 years ago from A small southern town


      I do hope they were happy and

      appreciative tears!

      Thanks so much for reading and

      taking time to reply.

    • profile image

      velvetwedges 7 years ago

      just had a little cry. that was lovely

    • onegoodwoman profile image

      onegoodwoman 7 years ago from A small southern town


      Happy tales are easy to share!

      Thanks for all the lovely things

      you have said....I thank you~~

    • Treasuresofheaven profile image

      Sima Ballinger 7 years ago from Michigan

      Like I said all along, OGW, your daughters are blessed to have you. Alex is beautiful in every way. Wonderful, encouraging, inspiring and touching the soul. Thanks for sharing your life with us!

    • onegoodwoman profile image

      onegoodwoman 7 years ago from A small southern town


      So glad it touched you.

      Compliments accept on my daughter.

      As always, I am glad you came by!

    • onegoodwoman profile image

      onegoodwoman 7 years ago from A small southern town


      I really think it is this way

      between many Moms and Daughters

      throughout the world.

      Glad you and your mom reunited also!

    • Karanda profile image

      Karen Wilton 7 years ago from Australia

      Goosebumps, what else is there to say? Thank you for sharing your thoughts and your daughter's precious letter. She is beautiful too. Lovely story.

    • giselle2323 profile image

      giselle2323 7 years ago from Peterborough, Ontario

      OGW, This brought me back to when I was 18 and had the realization that my Mom was a person, not just a being put on this earth to watch over me. At that point in my life, my attitude towards her changed. I understood her better and loved her more dearly. Until I married, it was always my Mom and I. Now we have a deeper friendship but it took going through the dark times, for us to become even closer. Thank you very much for writing this article. You have expressed yourself beautifully.

    • onegoodwoman profile image

      onegoodwoman 7 years ago from A small southern town


      I know that tune

      always my heart flutter and

      brings a smile to my face.

      Thank you for your compliment,

      on behalf of me and my girl.

    • onegoodwoman profile image

      onegoodwoman 7 years ago from A small southern town

      Vladimir Uhri,

      I will leave it up, and

      never question you about

      the rain.

      So glad you appreciate it.

    • onegoodwoman profile image

      onegoodwoman 7 years ago from A small southern town


      You are too kind!

      I am glad you enjoyed this one.

    • justom profile image

      justom 7 years ago from 41042

      What a beautiful story. Years ago I heard a song by Crosby Stills and Nash called "Teach Your Children" and every time the question of love between parents and children comes up I tell folks to listen to that song. "Don't you ever ask them why, if they told you, you would cry, just look at them and sigh, and know they love you". Those words have gotten me through a lot of tough times. That's a beautiful child you have (a reflection of you!) Peace!! Tom

    • Vladimir Uhri profile image

      Vladimir Uhri 7 years ago from HubPages, FB

      onegoodwoman. It would be read again and again. Thanks.

      I could not stop

      overflowed wells

      of salty water...

      perhaps heavy rain

      this is I could only say...


    • profile image

      Fiddleman 7 years ago

      This is a masterpiece and so well done. Great picture too. You are a great mom and and a wonderful person.

    • onegoodwoman profile image

      onegoodwoman 7 years ago from A small southern town


      You may.............

      as often as you need to.

      Your voice is welcomed here.

      come time and time again....................

    • prairieprincess profile image

      Sharilee Swaity 7 years ago from Canada

      Onegoodwoman, one more comment, if I may. This hub reminds me of my Mom and I ... she too was so knowledgeable in things of intuition, and how often did I unknowingly mock her, asking her for "the proof" for those things that she just "knew." How did she know, I needed to know. But she just knew, and she was always right. How I loved my Mother, so intensely, but how proud I became while attending university, and how ashamed I am of the times I questioned her, without mercy, so smug in my reasoning and logic.

      When she was diagnosed with breast cancer in my last of university, I begged God for four years straight to let us keep her, and our times together grew sweeter and sweeter. We both believed she would be healed, and we plotted plans of the books we would write and the places we would go. Dying was never discussed, and I never allowed her to talk about a will. There was no one more alive than my mother, and it wasn't possible that she would die.

      She always forgave my arrogance, and usually overlooked my anger. Now I see more clearly what that must have cost her. I see the price she paid for me to be so beloved. An impossible stretching of everything in her ... that is the price a mother pays to keep loving her children. Because that is all she can do.

      Take care, and thanks again for this beautiful piece.

    • onegoodwoman profile image

      onegoodwoman 7 years ago from A small southern town


      the tears of today, feed the gardens of tomorrow........

      it is tomorrow's garden that I am celebrating!

      I do thank you for coming and for your support during turmoil, yet, I value you most in celebration!

      This was written as a celebration to my daughter.

      Embrace, rejoice, we are reunited! It was worth any price.

    • onegoodwoman profile image

      onegoodwoman 7 years ago from A small southern town


      I am the Mom of three daughters........

      It is my own experience that they all come back, it is our task to receive them........

      Not all children have the same gift...yet, they all have a piece of us.

      Thank you for being with me during such a time of emotional remembering.

      I value you as a fellow hubber............

    • onegoodwoman profile image

      onegoodwoman 7 years ago from A small southern town


      At the risk of offending good fathers......they certainly exist........

      I dare say.....there is no union greater than Mother and words, I have ever spoken or heard, clearly describe it.

      I do think, it is by God's own design.

    • FloBe profile image

      Flo Belanger 7 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      Wow, and wow! Tears are streaming down my face as I am overcome with the emotion of this exposure of your heart! This is what love does.

    • onegoodwoman profile image

      onegoodwoman 7 years ago from A small southern town


      My daughter presented me with the greatest of gifts........acceptance.

      Thank you for being here for me.

    • onegoodwoman profile image

      onegoodwoman 7 years ago from A small southern town

      Jason R Manning,

      Somehow, as my friend........I knew you would come.

      Our children are people also...though they do not always express, they do feel.

      In answer to your question...many, it took me days to write this!

    • prairieprincess profile image

      Sharilee Swaity 7 years ago from Canada

      Onegoodwoman, this is so very moving. Surely that is the danger of loving a child ... that you will give them so much that they will think themselves above you, but your daughter came back, and the love you planted in her bloomed and watered you. Such exquisite writing ... thanks again!

    • Judicastro profile image

      Judicastro 7 years ago from birmingham, Alabama

      Oh my Ylonda, it got to where I could barely read this for the tears! I have 2 daughters and 2 sons and they are so precious to me. My oldest went to live with her father when she was 8, by no choice of mine. I grieved for years. It has only been in the last few years that we have begun to reclaim our relationship. She is expecting my first grandson (which I think I shared with you) and I am going out to spend a week with her when he is born. I am believing for complete restoration and that with the birth of Samuel there will be a bond between us that will not ever be broken. Bless you sweet friend for sharing this encouraging word. So good!!

    • creativeone59 profile image

      benny Faye Douglass 7 years ago from Gold Canyon, Arizona

      Thank you onegoodwomen, for a blessed,indearing and touching story. Isn't it wonderful when the children finally understand,what we been telling them all of their lives and repeat it back to us. This was a truly heart felt hub. God bless you. creativeone59

    • Jason R. Manning profile image

      Jason R. Manning 7 years ago from Sacramento, California

      Wow Y,

      How many times did you cry writing this ode to your daughter? Through your triumph of motherhood, God has given you something worth far more than any precious object on earth. I hope that one day, my daughter will have such reverence for the sacrifice we intend to make for her. Your writing is getting deeper and more emotionally involved…in such a passionate, intimate way. This is awesome Y. God Bless your triumphs and trials, to you and your hubby.

    • onegoodwoman profile image

      onegoodwoman 7 years ago from A small southern town


      I am proud of all 3 of my girls, for individual reasons and gifts........

      It is the voice, coming back to me, that is portrayed here. Parents don't always get the 'thank you', this child voiced it to me. It is truly a treasured letter.

      As always, I appreciate you reading, my hubs..........

    • tmbridgeland profile image

      tmbridgeland 7 years ago from Small Town, Illinois

      What a great pic. It's good to have kids that you are proud of, and right to be.