Sunday, 13 May 2012

A Mother's Love and Legacy

So after yesterday's spoiling, today was the official Mother's Day and it was nice to have the pressure off and just enjoy the day and in particular focus on celebrating all the other wonderful Mothers in my life. I'm so blessed by so many nurturing, supportive, encouraging women, many of whom I got to hug in gratitude at church this morning. We then had a yummy lunch at home honouring my own amazing, supportive, devoted and sacrificial Mum and step-dad, with Lily once again in succeeding in bringing the table to tears with her precious prayer thanking God for Nana and saying how much she loves her! 

My sweet boy plucked this little flower from the garden and gave it to me...
Worth more than a dozen roses, any day!

Lily brought me a tray of yummy food... now I'm getting spoilt!

We then spent the afternoon at the nursing home where my grandmother, who is very far gone with dementia, now lives. A dozen of the family was there, ringing our chairs in a circle around my Nana in the dining hall, laughing, eating cupcakes, telling stories and giving honour to this beautiful woman who has gone so far into herself she can no longer really speak, move, or do much at all. And yet. She is still with us. She is a mother... a grandmother and now a great-grandmother. She has mothered and loved and cared for decades and now, although sadly a seeming shell of the vivacious and strong woman she once was, she is the recipient of abundant love and esteem for all that she has given over her life. How touching it was to see her devoted children caring for her, talking to her, feeding her and holding her hand. They treat her with great dignity and respect, it is a testament to the love she gave them, that they now return it so compassionately and so gently. I saw the nursing staff warmly smile out our noisy little crew, the atmosphere of a party in a place so normally solemn and quiet. They saw a family celebrating a Mother today and it was beautiful. I was proud of my family.

I saw my grandmother, whose face and eyes are mostly passive, watching the children scamper around and knew their innocent energy would bring her joy on some instinctive level. Lily presented her with a bunch of freshly-picked lavender, and spoke so gently, Eli patted her knee and warbled her a little song. We saw the corners of her quiet mouth lift several times in the best joy she could communicate. I knew she was happy, surrounded by her family.

After we left, Lily asked me why she didn't talk and when Great-Nana was going to get better and I had to gently explain that she probably would not get better because she is very old and very sick. My tender-hearted girl wept, saying she wanted her to get better again. We talked quietly and I answered her many questions gently but honestly. It hurt to see her little confused eyes, I could see her trying to comprehend it all... life's realities that must be slowly faced.

The kids were captivated by the budgies at the nursing home! 

Afterwards we spent some quiet moments on the bench outside the nursing home. Snuggling my blessings even closer. What will our future bring? What kind of mother will they think of me as? How will they remember my love for them? I can only pray they see some glimmers of God's love, grace and gentleness in me, as I strive to mother and nurture them. I pray they know that they were always loved. That nothing they could do would make me love them more, or love them less.

I read them 'We're Going on a Bear Hunt' - what is it about this book that kids love so much?? At least, my kids do! I remember Lily at around Eli's age absolutely obsessed with this book, one morning literally reading it a dozen times in a row. She could not.get.enough. I have to confess I eventually hid the book for a couple days as I just needed a break from THAT BEAR!!!!

But sure enough, Eli is now obsessed with it and Lily is once more drawn back to her old favourite. Over and over again we read it, shrieking with glee when the bear appears, then Eli sadly says 'Bye Bye Bear. Poor Bear' and gives him a kiss when the Bear wanders back home. As much as I joke about it, this little book is filled with many sweet memories of snuggly reading times with both my kids... and many more to come, no doubt. I know it is one well-worn book I will be treasuring for always and hopefully passing on to them one day. For the grand-kids. Oh dear, my heart just skipped a beat.... let's move on!!!

I snuggled into bed with Lily tonight reading the poetry of A.A.Milne's 'Now we are Six' - a gorgeous hard cover version gifted to Lily at her birth by a dear friend (and one of the best-gifters I know). It's the first time I've thought to read it to her since babyhood and I was thrilled to find she loved the poetry, even with few pictures and my heart was happy to cosy up with my baby and read her those precious little poems.

Thank you, Lord...for everything.


  1. This is just so beautiful, you are such a loving mama, total sweetness. I love your daughters headband.

  2. Lovely post that bought a tear to my eye. I had a Grandma with dementia too and when my two eldest were Lily and Eli's age, we used to visit her as well, so your words have bought back lots of memories of my Gran, which is nice on Mother's Day. The last shot of you and the kids is super sweet :)

    1. oh thank you! yes, dementia is so so hard. it is a slow grief upon the entire family, watching your loved one slowly slip away. So glad you can remember sweet times visiting your lovely Gran today x

  3. Kate, I didn't think I had any more tears left after yesterday but what you have written is just beautiful. Your love and kindness is so transparent and abundant. I hope you were blessed on this lovely day as you celebrated being a Mother to your gorgeous little ones. Thank you for always being so inspiring and honest with your faith and life as a Mum. You are truly beautiful both inside and out.

  4. Kate, this is just beautiful. And what thoughtful, self-less hopes you have for your babies and what they gain from your parenting. You are obviously a gorgeous mumma and your babies are so lucky to be loved by someone so lovely!

  5. Another post that speaks so much about the person you are and the people you hope your children grow into. What a devoted & loving way to spend your mothers day.
    You are a beautiful person Kate, your kids are so fortunate to have your love & your constant model of kindness. X x


i love to hear your thoughts, thanks for leaving your comments! xx