Mother's Wisdom

“Motherhood: All love begins and ends there.”

Robert Browning

May 6, 2021

On a recent walk, my friend, Ann, quoted her mother in response to something we were discussing. Our discussion planted the seed for reaching out to woman friends and asking them to share quotes, lessons learned, or the personality traits of their mothers. The unconscious mind is a powerful thing. It was not until I had embarked on this project that I realized that this past April was the 20th anniversary of my mom's death. I am grateful to have heard so many beautiful memories about our mothers. I have also been impressed with how many of my friends embody the traits and wisdom of their moms.

Ann’s mom, Ruth J. Azevedo, mother of 8, was quoted as saying, “The softer, easier way now will always prove harder in the long run.” A mother of 8, Ruth would have a delicious dinner ready for her kids and their friends. She would stretch what she had, even if it meant she had less. Ann remembers her as the most selfless person she has ever known and marvels at how her mom kept up the work involved for such a large family. She worked hard to instill essential lessons to her children.

Anne Marie’s mom, Lucille E. Tucciarone, was committed to nurturing and raising children. She dedicated her life to the children entrusted to her in the foster care system, including those with unique challenges. Anne Marie remembers her mom saying, "A mother's love is unconditional." Lucille’s life was a testimony to her commitment.

Bette’s mom, Gilda (Cirace) Piccolo, was devoted to her family. She would often say, "It's not what you say. It's how you say it." Her mom emulated the traits of being kind and humble. One of Gilda’s favorite quotes was, “Life isn’t about waiting for the storm to pass but learning to dance in the rain.” Bette learned to dance with “reckless abandon” from her mom.

Deb remembers her mom, Kathleen Manier, as being nurturing, selfless, modest, and witty. Kathleen loved children. Though she only had one child, she was a doting mothering influence for neighbors and grandchildren.

Janice remembers her mom, Phyllis McCauley, as a highly empathic woman who manifested kindness and compassion on a regular basis. She kept a box of greeting cards that she sent on happy and sad occasions. Phyllis had a strong desire to comfort others and was an excellent listener.

Laura’s mother, Theresa Medinger, is described as having a great capacity to connect with all people. When people are in her presence, Theresa gives full attention to that person and opens her heart to them.

Linda’s mom, Katherine Haytayan, is remembered for many quotes. One that brings a chuckle is, "Love smuv! Love goes out the window when there is no money." One filled with wisdom is, "You need someone to love, something to do, and something to look forward to." Linda describes her mom as loyal, caring, happy, and adventuresome.

Michele’s mom, Bette Marcou, is remembered for responding to any complaint with the following, "If that's the worst thing that could happen…." Michele describes her mom as outgoing, intelligent, embracing life, and living to help others. Her mom had a sampler in her home that read, "I shall pass thru this world but once. Any good that I can do or any kindness that I can show to any human being, let me not defer or neglect it, for I should not pass this way again." Bette lived by these words.

Vickie’s mom, Virginia S. Bell, is remembered with many quotes. She encouraged acceptance with the words, “What’s to be is to be.” Another quote was, “Make do with what God gave you.” Vickie describes her mom as a strong, creative, compassionate woman who relied on her faith and wit to cope with life’s challenges. Virginia was a devoted wife, mother, and grandmother.

My mother, Patricia Morgan, was a sensitive, warm, creative, and elegant woman. She had a great sense of humor and loved to laugh. As an artist, she was a harsh critic of her own work. She would say, "If someone says that your creative work is interesting, it is the kiss of death." I often wonder how she would feel to know that her paintings surround me at both home and our office.

As we celebrate Mother’s Day, let us remember what we have learned from our mothers. I wish all of my friends a very happy and peaceful Mother’s Day!