Mothers, Daughters, and Aging

Mom, Her Mom, and Me - 1973

“Mother-daughter. Daughter-mother. With aging parents, the lines blur in ways that make you question everything you know about yourself,” writes Washington Post reporter Tracy Grant in her February 22, 2011 Momspeak column.

If you are an adult daughter with a strong and confident mom, this introduction not only rings true — it also makes you keep reading.

In her column Mothers, Daughters, and the Circle of Life, Grant deftly explores the challenges we daughters experience as roles evolve and change.  Her piece is less about caregiving and more about the shifting emotions and changes as each generation of mothers and daughters confront role-reversals that are a part of the aging parent-adult child landscape.

I’ve included this photo of another era of shifting relationships, when my mom was helping my grandmother, then in her  late 80s.  At that point, I was clueless.

Aging Parents: Happy Mother’s Day!

My mom and me in late 1952.

Last January I wrote this post about my amazing mother. Not too many people read it then, so I am recycling it because I had so much fun writing it. It is also pasted in below. What an amazing woman!

Besides being one of the Obama super-volunteers in the Shenandoah Valley last year, she is active in politics, a book club, and church, and she is always ready to get in touch with a Congressperson or Senator about an important issue (right now that is health care reform). Currently she is helping to make hygiene kits for Church World Service to send to Haiti. My mom loves her computer, uses it judiciously, and was on Facebook long before I was because she wanted to keep in touch with the young people who worked with her on the Obama campaign.

Though she is 82 years old, last summer Mom took a stress test when her blood pressure was high, and the result is that she has the body/heart of a 64-year-old. Did I mention that she swims and exercises four or five times a week?

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