My mother is probably my favourite person on the planet. I’m the youngest of four kids, and I have never had a time in my life that we didn’t get along. None of the kids in my family have had trouble getting along with her. I can still remember a heap of the year we spent together before I was old enough to go to school, but my siblings had already started.
She’s had a huge influence on the person I am today. Like her, I’m an introvert. She’s a very giving person, and I feel that has instilled in me the same desire for peace and calm. All my life, she has been diplomacy. She silently absorbs tension and redirects it, investing into calm resolutions. She is a person who will sacrifice anything of her own in order to have the people around her become happy, even sacrificing her own happiness.
I have wondered in the past if this is why she has so few hobbies now. Having four kids, I think she would drop things she was doing if it clashed with singing lessons or the Wednesday evening racket ball. I remember often when I was a kid she would be juggling us, work, and any other commitments. She committed to everything with passion and energy, and if something had to give, she resolved herself to it and carried on. I’m still impressed at how much she was able to manage in a single day.
She’s great to talk to about things, because she is so wise. She listens attentively, with zero judgement, asks thoughtful questions, and then supports you when she feels you have come to an important understanding. Her ability to listen non-judgementally, without interrupting, taking in every word, is at a skill level I’ve not seen in many other people.
When I had black hair, people would say to me ‘you look so much like your mother’ and I would wear it like a badge of honour. I’m like her on the inside, too. Often more ready than I should be to be a storm break, very ready to carry more than my load, willing to sacrifice so others don’t have to be unhappy.
I wish I had her hands. I remember as a kid playing with the rings on her fingers and admiring her beautiful nails. I thought she had hands just like you saw in magazine photos. I always thought her earrings and shoes were so glamorous.
I have memories as a tween, laying on the floor in the lounge touching the stretchmarks on her stomach and feeling totally at peace with how the most beautiful woman I’d ever known had these tiger stripes on her abdomen. Tiger stripes suited her, because she was so powerful, determined and fierce. As an adult, I now value even more her being so willing to let me see and adore her body as it was, never treating her body like it should be something I should be ashamed of seeing. Those foundations are still something I draw upon today, navigating a world so ready to have skin free of identity.
She’s still as strong a pillar in my life as ever. Now as an adult, understanding what it is like being an introvert, I worry about her. It’s hard to keep giving your energy to other people, and no person is a bottomless pit of giving. If there is one thing that I would hope to say defines me as an adult, it’s that she has taught me enough to be able to see when someone else needs to do less giving. To know when someone needs time to recharge and to be able to step in and give that person room to breathe. Most of all, I hope that as an adult I can be her mirror and to be for her, the intuitive, supportive and giving woman she has always been for me.
For me, that would be the greatest compliment I could achieve: to be like my mother.
I guess what has inspired this post was that my exhausted mother, limping because of a foot injury, enthusiastically offered to take my blog photos for this post. She’s not had any training in photography, just what she’s picked up hanging out with her children as they do photography. I was blown away by how beautiful these pictures were when I got them off the camera. I’d love to see her take up photography, if I can convince her. She seems to see the whole world as though she’s giving it a chance to be at its best. Like she sees beauty in everything. Beauty isn’t just in the eye of the beholder either. Beauty is something that is seen from the heart.
Dress: Review Australia
Belt: Review Australia
Shoes: sold out – Modcloth
Bag: Review Australia