Happy Birthday, Mom

It’s my mom’s birthday today.

We were talking in Montreal about mothers and about how motherhood and the potential for motherhood are just not compatible with this idea of “the individual.”  How can you talk about a person as an individual when there might be two people in that body?’

I feel my mom with me all the time, some part of her broken off and packed away inside me, an inheritance from the women who gave her an inheritance.

2 thoughts on “Happy Birthday, Mom

  1. Hmmm…I think I might disagree about the choice of the word ‘compatible.’ Even while I have been/still am a mother, and it has been an important, incredible part of my life, it’s not been the one-and-only defining part. Of course I think it can be compatible.

    I still, have always, consider myself an individual. While pregnant, yeah, I had to change my wicked, wicked ways to nuture the thing inside of me, and it wasn’t all about MeMeMe. Because I DID have two people in my body, I was not, in the strictest sense of the word, in a condition (pregnancy) I chose to be in, an ‘individual.’ But once they were out, I considered them as individuals too, and went back to being my own self. All in a good way, you know.

    I don’t know, I guess that’s why it’s always bothered me a little (quite a) bit to see so many womens’ online names as ‘BlahBlahsMommy’ or ‘Mommy2Two’ and stuff like that. What? Like you weren’t someone before you had a kid?

    I mean, I get it and all, I think my kids are awesome too, always have been, and I love them to death, and they were SO MUCH CUTER than any kids’ pictures on the web now, but you know, they grow up and then who are you after that?

    I don’t know where I was going with this. But Happy Birthday to your Mom! She did good.

  2. Oh, Peg, no, good point! I hadn’t thought of that end of it, but you’re right. My point is at the other end of the spectrum, that this idea that we’re somehow distinct unique individuals shaped only by our own experiences is false, but the other end, what you’re talking about here, is clearly a problem as well, the folks who give up their selves totally.

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