Feb 1 has come and gone, Feb 1 was my mums birthday, I thought about her as I often do and wonder how things might have been different if she were alive today. She has been gone 23 years now and whilst I still miss her it is nowhere near the intensity of when she first passed away.I have talked about how mum, (Flora) was a shit kicker, no nonsense tolerated, grab life by the balls and if it yelled she would give it a harder squeeze. Mum had no formal qualifications apart from her QBE (qualified by experience) her personal circumstances, large family, family dynamics and life saw her escape from home and school at an early age and as I understand she lied about her age to get her first job. A lifelong friend of hers described mum as being very naive, I am sure that naivety did not last long. I was thinking of her this morning as I made coffee, she didn’t drink it very much but tea, well that’s a different story, Bushell’s loose leaf tea and don’t make it weak! As for new-fangled tea bags well her invective about those, and a number of things was often colourful, entertaining and informative, a formidable woman. She is remembered in Morrinsville as a woman not to be trifled with.
Mum lived her life for family, extended and immediate, those who knew her and loved her know she wasn’t perfect, and although she didnt get much education she wasn’t stupid. I wonder about what might have been had she been educated formally? This is my first post in a while, for a whole lot of reasons however in it whilst I talk about my mum, I want to acknowledge another woman in my life. Some of you may have followed my journey and despaired and celebrated as I found and then lost then found again love, well I took a significant step in January and I married my fiance. It has been a tough introduction to married life with hospital admissions and shoulder surgery a couple of major challenges that we have faced. I have been very reliant on Margaret, I am very much a one armed bandit at the moment but more about that another time.
In Margaret I have found a soul mate, a heart, soul and body connection, there are many things I admire about her, some of them are very unique traits other things remind me of my mum, her love of strong tea is one of those, her commitment to family and her refusal to limit the definition of family to blood relatives are a couple of things, her finely tuned bullshit meter and her compassion are another couple of things. Mum was the glue that held our family together in this I see Margaret as well.
This is not a comparative essay, nor an attempt to come out as having a Oedipus complex, my mum would pee her pants laughing at thought of that! I will say that both woman have a passion for life, their care for others is extremely evident, I share this, however at this time in my life I feel that it is time to hunker down a bit, reduce my borders and spend some significant energy on developing, strengthening and future proofing the relationships that are primary in my existence, quite a dilemma for me but in this I am supported by Margaret.
I write this blog to celebrate strong, loving, passionate women, glue in families, keen irreverent earthy senses of humour and an ability to laugh at themselves (and others) and an ability to recognise and acknowledge both the profane and the sacred. Above all is a capability and an appetite for life. In this I celebrate Margaret and give thanks for her in my life.