Sunday, 6 March 2016

The Next Generation

When I was a child,
Mothering Sunday involved
walking home from Sunday School clutching a daffodil
- which probably had a
rather crushed stem
by the time it arrived home!
I remember being quite put out
to discover that I was supposed to hand the flower over to my mother, as although it had been given to me it was actually a gift for her!

My next memory of Mother's Day
was my mum buying a flower plant for my Grandma,
and being quite shocked to discover that my mother had also been a child once!
What is more, my grandmother was my mother's mother!
Until then I have been under the erroneous impression that the only common link between them
was me.
Suddenly I discover that they have a whole common history of which I am not a part!  
How rude!

Fast forward many years and roles are completely reversed,
as I became the carer of the one who once cared for me.
Nursing care followed as mum retreated further into the world of her childhood,
lured away by cruel alzheimers.
Now, like my grandmothers, she is just a memory.
I have no-one to ring,
or graves to take flowers to.
Realising that I am the older generation is a sobering thought.
My daughter has no real concept of the world in which I was a child.
There is nothing new!

So today we look back and remember those who have gone before
- not in some syrupy sentimental way,
but remembering the laughs, and the words of advice.
Forgiving the words that we did not appreciate at the time, yet find ourselves echoing!

Mothering Sunday - a time to remember and say 'Thank You',
even if they are no longer around to hear us speak.