The Mother-Daughter Dance

There are a lot of articles out there about what to expect when raising your children. They talk about the bitter, the sweet, and the salty, giving advice to the generation that is now loaded with young parents – my generation. But all of this advice is almost always just an excuse for one parent – who happens to be a published writer – to chew over their own days of yore and talk about their own time with their little one now grown.

I do take a rather sentimental interest in those cheesy articles – comfort food for a mom’s heart. I find that I’m especially interested in the ones written by mothers about their daughters (as opposed to their sons). I don’t know why this is, considering that I have spawned both genders and take equal interest in each of them. Maybe it’s because I myself am female. Whatever the reason, it’s true.

Here’s the thing (and the point of this post): these articles are written through the lens of the reader as the mother thinking about her daughter. And as a parent, you often think about how “one of these days, you’ll understand!” But will they? Or will they simply have their own children with which they have their own sentiments, never really imagining how their own mother felt about them? I wonder how often the reader sees the article through the lens of themselves as the daughter, recognizing and appreciating the previously unnoticed background work, thoughts, and feelings of their own mothers toward themselves.

Mom, since I know that you’re one of my five(ish) readers, I’ll let you know here that I think of you a lot – both as I read mushy articles about parenting and as I raise my own daughter. I understand a lot more now. I do appreciate it. Thanks.

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