Mum’s the Word: a Blog for American Mother’s Day

I have two mothers. They’re both dead. One was called Mum. It would have felt disrespectful to call her Doreen. The other one – the first one – was mostly called Mom. My dad called me out if I slipped up and called my Mom, Mum.

Mum #1: Happy days

Both Mum and Mom suffered with dementia in their last years. For me, in some ways, it was worse than if they had died, for Alzeheimer’s meant the death of two strong personalities.

I can and do, think of Mum fondly: eg, her favourite phrases such as “frame yourself”, “use your loaf”, and, best of all, “I’ve had an elegant suficency, and any thing else would be flippity floppity.”

Try saying that at parties.

Recently, I’ve had another phase of thinking about my Mom in terms of what I learned from her, rather than the despair of “I need you; you’re dead”.

In the six years of this blog, I’ve made it a semi-habit to write a blog about my Mom on American Mother’s Day. This is the first time I’ve written about my Mum, too. I like to see this as a sign I am, finally, growing up.

I’m sure that would have pleased both my mothers.

Mom on VJ Day, 1945

About Sheila N

Enough about me. Art by Tom Brown.
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