Thursday, May 7, 2015

Celebrating Mother's Day with Books

With Mother's day right around the corner, I wanted to share with you some of my favorite mothers.... those found in books, of course!   Besides my own mother,  these women all provided  things to admire about motherhood.  Maybe some of these choices will surprise you, but when you think about it, you may just understand my point of view.

The first mother I'm going to mention is also the most unusual of those mention: Flora 717 from the wonderful book The Bees by Laline Paull.  This is the story of Flora 717 who is born to the sanitation department of the Hive, but she is meant for greater things. Flora consistently proves that she is more than she appears and even dares to break the rules of the hive in order to have a child of her own.  Flora fights to have this child, to keep it and ultimately to see this child achieve greatness.  My favorite quote, "Then please kindly recall that variation is not deformity.".

Now, for a more tradition image of motherhood.... Marmee from Little Women  Ok, who didn't want to be Jo, or Meg, or Beth at least?   I never wanted to be Amy.  But Marmee.... who wouldn't have wanted her for a mother?  She was loving and kind and also very patient with her girls.  She raised them to be educated and independent young women.  She taught them to always seek what was best for themselves and to look out for one another.  This is a typical Marmee - ism.... "Watch and pray, dear, never get tired of trying, and never think it is impossible to conquer your fault.”

One of my favorite books of all time is A Tree Grows in Brooklyn.  Katie Nolan is a no nonsense, hard working  mother who always presses for the best for her children, in spite of the times in which she lives.  New York in the Depression certainly wasn't the easiest place for raising children. Katie was relentless in promoting education and especially the written word in their house.  The rule was that they each had to read two pages of the Bible and two pages of Shakespeare every night.  A mom who promotes literacy is my kind of Mom.

Kate Murray, from a Winkle in Time, is another great example of a literary mom.  She does everything she can to support her children and their choices.  She constantly points out, to her daughter, Meg, that things happen with children in their own time.  Charles Wallace will talk - in his own time.  Meg will develop - in her own time.  I think that is a really important lesson because often children are in such a hurry... to grow up, to be more.  She teaches her children the importance of character - things beyond the superficial.  " People are more than how they look".  

Ok, Cersei Lannister may not be the obvious choice for mother of the year, but she does a lot of things for her children, sometimes unspeakable things.  She made multiple attempts on Bran Stark's life.... to protect her secret and her children.  She grieves deeply for Joffrey, is so protective of Tommen and worries for the safety of her daughter.  She is a mother who will go to ANY length for the safety and happiness of her children and, as a mom, that is definitely something I can relate to. "if it weren't for my children, I would have thrown myself from the highest tower in the Red Keep. They're the reason I'm alive. "

Though Mammy isn't actually Scarlett O'Hara's mother in Gone with the Wind, she is certainly her mother figure and conscience. Mammy is always with Scarlett, even when her real mother can not be.  Mammy provides love and care for Scarlett and her family.  Mammy truly is the heart of Tara. "You know what trouble I's talkin' 'bout. I's talking 'bout Mr. Ashley Wilkes. He'll be comin' to Atlanta when he gets his leave, and you sittin' there waitin' for him, just like a spider. He belongs to Miss Melanie... "

And finally.... everyone's favorite literary mom... (and if she isn't.... she should be!)

Molly Weasley is nothing but pure awesomeness!  She is the mom to everyone's favorite red-heads.  She even loves Harry like her own child.   She embraces her children's individuality and encourages while worrying for their safety and well being.  I mean, if you could live at anyone's house, with any mom from a book.... it would have to be the Burrow.  Molly's love encompasses everyone there, and isn't that what a mother really does-  Loves us in spite of ourselves?  

Happy Mother's day everyone and I hope you are celebrating with a Good Book!

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