Mother’s Day is coming up May 10, and I was given a book of quotations to review called, “A Mother’s Love: An Inspired Collection of Quotations Celebrating Motherhood” by Jackie Corley.
Since I am not a mother, this book would not have been one otherwise sent to me. Quotations such as this one, “The mother’s heart is the child’s schoolroom” could be seen by non-moms as somewhat cloying. Yet as I read through the book, I found more and more quotations I liked.
I found this sentiment that I thought described my own mother (a no-nonsense Depression-era gal who took over my father’s business when he died suddenly). The Rev Billy Graham said: “The influence of a mother upon the lives of her children cannot be measured. They know and absorb her example and attitudes when it comes to questions of honesty, temperance, kindness and industry.”
The book is generally serious, but I also loved this bit of amusement: “When I was a child, my mother said to me, ‘If you become a soldier, you’ll be a general. If you become a monk, you’ll end up as the pope.’ Instead, I became a painter and wound up as Picasso.” This was a quote from Pablo Picasso.
Another quote I liked is simple, “Men are what their mothers made them” by Ralph Waldo Emerson. My own mother often told me, “Marry a Jewish man; their mothers raise great husbands.” Same sentiment; different words. And I did marry a Jewish man.
A Jewish proverb in the book is nice: “A mother understands what a child does not say.”
I remember my parents waiting up for me when I first started going out on dates. I couldn’t understand why they worried. Here’s a related quote from Margaret Mead:
“One of the oldest human needs is having someone to wonder where you are when you don’t come home at night.”
Another quote that rang true for me about my mother is this one from Tenneva Jordan: “A mother is a person who seeing there are only four pieces of pie for five people, promptly announces she never did care for pie.” (Maybe there’s a reason I didn’t become a mother. I like pie.)
From Barbara Walters: “Motherhood is tough. If you want a wonderful little creature to love, you can get a puppy.” (Yep.)
And finally, I remember my own mother telling me, when I was in my 40s, about this quote from a book she was reading by Florida Scott-Maxwell: “No matter how old a mother is, she watches her middle-aged children for signs of improvement.” (Obviously, I still had a way to go.)
And finally, a quote from Kathy Lette: “The biggest surprise my family could give me on Mother’s Day would be to remember it.”
Maybe with a book?