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Mary Gentry Writes

More Than a Fuchsia Basket

Mother’s Day is soon upon us, followed by Father’s Day a month later. Given that Mother’s Day celebrates the best job I’ve ever had, it demands more than a fuchsia basket to honor its significance.

There’s no mandatory retirement from motherhood; just a gradual adjustment to the responsibilities and venue. Being Kate’s mother has been an unalloyed pleasure.  Most of my ‘mother’ friends feel the same way. Happily, having qualified as a mother set me up for the ultimate bonus, being a grandmother – much better than a gold watch or a Caribbean cruise – a particularly sweet happenstance since no amount of ‘mother manipulations’ can bring it about. It’s out of mom’s hands!

A number of my friends maintain that being a grandmother is better than being a mother. That seems a bit churlish to me. I’d say it’s more like a dead heat in two different races.

One evening after giving Eleanor a bath and turning her over to her mother, Kate nearly overcome with emotion, said, “Oh mom, I love Eleanor so much!”

I put my arms around her. “I know you do.” I said.  “Just remember, you’re my Eleanor.” I recall vividly the moment I realized that my parents must have loved me the way I now loved my daughter.  It was surprisingly shocking.

My family’s stories, the ones I played a part in, as well as the ones told to me, are brought together in “Too Far from the Tree.” The release of this collection, celebrating family with humor and affection, is well timed for Mother’s and Father’s Day. I hope reading “Too Far from the Tree” will inspire you to poke around your own family stories waiting to be uncovered, not far from the tree. Who knows, maybe you will decide to write them down.

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2 Responses

  1. Julie Austin says:

    Oh Mary,
    My thoughts beautifully written by you. Thanks!
    Julie

  2. Heather Thien says:

    You so often say what I feel, but cannot put into words…I just love your stories!

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