Monday, May 14, 2012

Mother's Day Perspective

A bit of  twist on the usual reflections about Mother's Day.  At our family gathering yesterday we were four generations and mine was the "view from the top."  For over two years I have watched my daughter [in this picture] enjoying grandmother-hood in a way I neither had the opportunity, nor the temperament to do.  Here she is with the newest of two grandsons, clearly they are enjoying one another.  Her daughter (the baby's mother) is enjoying the support and sharing that neither of us had since I did not live near family at all when I had small children, and I lived far enough away to be able to visit only a time or two a year when she was raising her three children.  It's fascinating to think about the different methods of parenting, and the differences that evolve within families.  All the stories are different, of course.  I don't believe there is any stereotypical American family nowadays -- those all seemed to belong to the  Norman Rockwell era which began vanishing in the mid-20th century.  As we rush on through the 21st century we are a very different country.   Mother's day has become both a time for knee jerk public sentimentality and for florists to make a lot of money.  For this one family, with this tiny four and a half year old member it is a  unique moment in time.

4 comments:

FOLKWAYS NOTEBOOK said...

June -- Well this is my second try on sending this comment. I don't know if you received the first. My computer has been going down quite a bit today. Anyway I wanted to say that the photo of your daughter and great-grandson is so precious -- you should frame it. He is so intently interested in your daughter. Nice that you could spend it with your generations. -- barbara

June Calender said...

Thanks for being persistent, Barbara. I did not get the first message. Yes, I love that baby intensity and the grandmotherly adoration.

Jonas said...

I believe you're right, June. The "traditional nuclear family" constitutes a far smaller percent of households, now, than it did decades ago. Each family now stands or fails on its own merits. I'm OK with that. It should never have been about the "norm" but the love.

June Calender said...

Thanks, Jonas. That is so true and also profound.