Saturday, March 08, 2014

The Beauty of My Mother

March is Women's History Month.  A very important part of the creation of life is that of  a woman.
She is that essential ingredient for life to blossom and happen.  But sometimes we neglect to share the importance that the women in our lives serve to make our lives that much better.

There are many influential women that I have had in my life who have shaped it and have given it meaning and I am going to share some good qualities that make my Mom one of the most important people in my life today.

Now we are going to weave through the present and the past to see what great women can do in our lives and continue to do even today.  For my Mom is a living example of who I look to for advice and wisdom weekly.

To get me to where I am today, I could not be who I am without the tireless efforts and influence of my Mom who took a detour on her career path to be a librarian and instead continued her full time quest in being a mom who would open up and unlock my mind so I could forge many great paths in life. For I had several complex physical, social and intellectual challenges growing up.

The assignment at first for Mom was rather difficult for it was not a curriculum that was well established in the early 60's.   For there is only one Scott R. Davis in this world.  But as with work in libraries, there are card catalogs with books listed under author and title and subject.  And we as a family had to create our own catalog of resources and people to draw on to make my life work out and bring me into excellence.

A good character trait to describe Mom is that of caregiver and nurturer.
Oftentimes around the seaside cottage in Maine, Mom went to the flower garden out front and tended the flowers deadheading those who had no buds left.  I asked Mom, "why do we pluck off the buds?"
Mom replied, "we do it son so that more growth would come later on."  For flowers, it is relatively easy for the dead growth is clinging lightly to the end of that stem. For me as a human, there are many things that I cling to whether it be attitudes or possessions that are sometimes difficult to part with.

Growing up requires some deadheading in my life in getting me to see things from a different and wiser perspective.  I never found some of those times to be especially pleasant but often afterwards I understand the wisdom behind Mom's words.

Part of this nurturing quality is the time Mom spent in the kitchen each night preparing exceptional recipes for us at our dining room table.  She chose different recipes from the lightly stained wood recipe box with a lid that my Dad made for her.  In it were about 400 recipes on cards categorized by meat, soups and stews, desserts and other tasty delights.  Mom had a scoring system ranging from 5 star to 7plus.
Some of our dishes did not pass the  muster the first time through so we gave it a grade of a 5 star but then there were some dishes which were lights out and they were mainstays that we had once or twice a  month at 7 plus.
My Mom started doing a lot of the cooking to help save on the food budget and often found great deals at the local grocery store wisely using coupons and taking care of the store deals often slashing the prices by 30 to 40 percent a week.  And cooking the meals fresh made sure that my Dad got the low cholesterol diet that he needed. Our favorite dish was the Meat Loaf recipe which required the loaf to sit for 10 minutes after it came out of the oven.
Getting the table ready for the meal was one of the first chores I had in my family and gave me the chance to follow a routine and be held responsible in life.
That wooden box is now long gone from one of the moves and my brother now is using many of the same recipes for his family.

My Mom is an excellent caregiver as she looked after my Dad throughout his life and the challenges that he faced when communicating and understanding what went on.  He suffered from hearing loss and struggled with issues of dementia and Parkinsons later on in his life.  She made sure that the meds were given on time and kept careful records of what was dispensed. Almost being like a pharmacy dispensary.

My Mom has served as an advocate for those around her. And I remember the time that Mom and Dad advocated for me to be on the bowling team in elementary school so I could master the gutter ball or aim for an outstanding score of 120.
And she spent many an afternoon chaperoning 20 of my classmates on a tour to the Essex Steam Railroad or to the Connecticut Audobon Society.

Throughout life, Mom still finds time to serve in the school libraries or in the library at Piper Shores.
She loves to accession and shelve books and recommend biographies for Piper Shores to order for their community of readers and learners.

And she served as a great caregiver for her Mom who was left widowed in her late 60's and she and my dad and I often visited my Grandmother in Schenectady and brought her to visit us in Fairfield or in Maine and often carted stuff from her Mom's house to ours.  And we often went to local restaurants such as the Three Bears in Wilton and Cobbs Mill Inn. And we even spent a Halloween with Grandma so she would not be alone with the trick or treaters coming to the door.

At the water's edge, my Mom teaches me about the tidal pools in front of the cottage and shows me the periwinkles, the barnacles, the sea urchins and the clam and mussel shells that lived within the tidal pools formed from the erosion of the rocks over the years.

Finally Mom is a great teacher who helped me through a month when I had an operation on my feet and had to be in the hospital and then helped me to get caught up at home. I remember the time that we read about the Louis and Clark expedition and the discovery of the United States through its expansion.
And as I mentioned Mom continues to teach me so much and has given me a love of the English language as I am able to solve all kinds of word puzzles and Scrabble.

Later in  life, I was challenged by my friend Chip to learn Greek but I rescinded because that could get rather tricky with all of the characters and letters to be deciphered. Traveling through the world of English can sometimes be challenging enough for me.  As I also found Spanish challenging translating from English into Spanish which was rather easy. Now Greek would be another story.

As I look at her great example of going strong and still ticking at 86 this June 8th, she keeps rediscovering life and she will have that opportunity later on this May as she embarks on a Westward journey beginning a life in the Twin City of St. Paul to be near my brother and her granddaughter.
Who knows what new discoveries and adventurers are going to open up for her out there.
Almost living that Lewis and Clark expedition I learned about almost 38 years ago.

Ultimately the great miracle in life is that Mom continually helps others reach their potential whether it has been with myself, my Dad, my brother or her Mom. And she has never lost steam along the path of life!  And continues to help others reach their potential!

Looking forward to learning along the journey still as we help others in their journey as well.

And now to many more years of joy in selfless service to others.
My Hats off to Mom!!!
Thank you!!!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Scott - love the post about your mother. Your memories are like poems. Hope all is well with you.
Tom Carroll