May Musings 2019 – Memorials and Mother’s Day

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Where has time gone the last few months?  I had so many thoughts to share, then quickly moved on to new events and activities before taking enough time to compose them.  More dedication is required for me to become the kind of reporter I hope to be.

March 10:  Edmonton Soroptimist Club presented their annual International Women’s Day luncheon.  This was a wonderful time to celebrate people working locally and around the world for the improvement and development.  We are all challenged to be global citizens, to build positive change and better possibilities.  There is no end of opportunity; we simply need to find our niche.

March 20:  I was honored to participate in a Red Dress / Blue Shirt memorial for our missing and murdered Indigenous sisters and brothers.  The Day was sponsored by Concordia College and included drumming, a procession, testimonies, sharing circles, and a speaker panel.  As mourners marched through the reception building, it was heart-warming to see College staff spontaneously stand at their work sites in acknowledgement.  Surprisingly, not many in attendance had participated in the MMIWG Inquiry.  My message to the young people assembled was that they are the leaders of tomorrow, tasked with continuing reconciliation and addressing the challenge of missing and murdered, regardless of what formal recommendations come from the Inquiry.

March 22 to April 2 was our annual vacation to Mexico, an opportunity to relax and reconnect with family and friends, and the chance to read a few extra books.  After returning, we faced the usual obligations of taxes and yard maintenance.  My home computer unexpectedly crashed after several years of faithful service and I waited anxiously to find out what could be recovered.  Thankfully my word documents were safe.

April 21:  My mother celebrated her 94th birthday on Easter Sunday.  She still lives alone in her own home and manages remarkably well with reduced vision and hearing.  My every visit is accompanied by a new resolution to deal with my own collections of books, photos, clothing, etc. whatever it is we save, before others are required to do it for me.

Rounding out April was a fatality inquiry, another STOP (Sex Trade Offender Program), and a Victims of Homicide conference.  Moving into May was donor appreciation from Edmonton Community Foundation, a Be Brave luncheon for Little Warriors, joyful grade 12 graduation celebrations with a grandson, travel to visit my husband’s family in Manitoba, and more birthday celebrations before Mothers Day on May 12.  Hopefully, I can share more about these another time as all are brimming with thoughtful inspirations.

For now, I will reflect on parenting.  One of my biggest regrets is that I could have been a better mother.  I grew up in an age when children were expected to learn from criticism and punishment.  Recovery from and avoidance of censure and contempt, in my mind, caused me to be self-conscious, defensive, and cautious.  If I had enjoyed more confidence in my own competence and creativity, I might have shared more fully with the people in my life.

I’m grateful times have changed and children today benefit from encouragement and positive parenting techniques.  To help a child be grounded in confidence is a great gift, for them to know they are cared for, possibly even cherished.  Those so blessed can grow to explore and develop their unique character and abilities in the context of a supportive family, with reciprocal service, respect, love and gratitude.  How wonderful is the spontaneous and generous outpouring of good will.  That is my wish for the world.