My mother has always been there to support me in whatever I decided to pursue, from the time I was two years old and said, “Mom, I can skate!” and proceeded to waddle across the ice, to the days when I wondered why the hell I chose to pursue an English degree, and I knew that I could only make sense of things if I called her. In recent years, she has transitioned from a mother to a best friend. She is the person I trust the most when I need advice, whether it’s on love, my life plan, or what I should wear on a Saturday night. Though many say we look and sound alike, we are more different than we are similar. This makes her support and her interest in my life even more meaningful. She will listen to me talk about my essays, even if she hasn’t read the books herself, and will listen to my favourite albums with me, even if she doesn’t like them. I know that she will always be cheering for me, especially on the days when I’m struggling. In honour of Mother’s Day, I decided to interview my mother. You hear a lot from me, so I thought it was time you heard from the woman who made and shaped me. Here is my interview with the woman the world calls Lynn, who I am proud to call Mom.
What have you enjoyed most about being a mother?
The joy I’ve experienced over the years watching you grow and develop as your own person, in wisdom and inner and exterior beauty. You are your own unique person, very comfortable and accepting of yourself and I’m extremely proud of that.
What was your greatest fear when you became a mother?
That you would choke on a hot dog! That’s why I cut them up until you were eight years old!
Another other fears?
That I wouldn’t have the answers to your questions when you needed them most. As it turns out, the answers came more naturally then I thought they would. I also wanted to protect you from the sorrows and trial and tribulations of life, but I realized I usually couldn’t and that you would have to figure things out for yourself. I had to trust in you to do this on your own. I sometimes still want to come to your rescue but realize you are grown up now and that I can’t.
You’ve been teaching for thirty years. Did being a teacher prepare you for motherhood?
Being a teacher taught me that there are many unique little individuals out there each with their own personalities and talents. Each one as different as the next. Having taught most grades, it was interesting to learn about the “milestones” children experienced, as well as the struggles as they became more mature. I often thought about these as you experienced these milestones for yourself.
What did you value the most about your mother?
I valued her intelligence. She was a respected nurse and published writer. I was proud of her . The older I got the more I think I appreciated her. She had so many friends, quite a diverse group and that says something about a person. I think she had many friends because she was very open and accepting of everyone. Her compassion for people as well as other living things made her a special person in the eyes of many.
Which characteristics of your mother do you see in yourself?
To this day I am an animal lover like my mother was. I’m also a person who forgives easily. I learned that from her. I inherited a love of fashion and shopping from my mom who learned it from her mom. And now you enjoy it too. (I trained you at an early age!)
My mom thought it was important for us to travel and learn about new places. As a child our family travelled throughout Canada and the U.S., usually by car. I valued this as being really important so we were able to give you the experience of travelling broadly throughout your life.
Which of your characteristics do you see in me?
I think we are both energized by people who value us. We love to be with friends and appreciate them being in our lives. i think you are also a person who will forgive easily. You have the confidence in yourself that I had when I was your age.
What is the most valuable advice your mother gave you?
Trust in yourself and everything else will follow. This gave me the confidence to be who I am today.
What advice would you like to give me?
Be your own person. Be happy with who you are. Be with people who value you and get you and eventually be with the one who adores you. Realize that your dreams may not always be fulfilled but don’t stop dreaming. Take time to smell the flowers and always look for the good in people and situations. Life will always have it’s difficulties. It’s how you handle them and get back to living that will see you through your life.
Mom’s Song of the Day: Happy by Pharrell Williams
My Song of the Day: Ash Babe by Dan Mangan