Thursday, February 7, 2008

Definitions & Meaning

Dearest goddesses,

I’ve often thought of the words mother, grandmother and the meaning that is attached to those names, words, labels. Sometimes I think the meaning behind those names can create distance from the actual “person” behind the name. Maybe it is through the limited point of view that you grow up with – that feeling that you are the center of the universe.

I remember seeing a television show years ago – I think it might have been Growing Pains and Kirk Cameron was sick and home from school one day watching Gilligan’s Island. He turned off the show and was genuinely shocked when he turned it back on and the “show had gone on”. I think of my own grandmothers and how to a certain extent they weren’t individual people to me – they only existed as my “grandmother”. It wasn’t until they were long gone that I wondered about the women behind the title. What were their hopes, their fears. How did they deal with disappointment. What were their dreams – did they feel they lived those dreams?

I think it is a conscious choice to get to know the people behind the titles. And a choice to let go of the “roles” we tend to fall into when family gets together which tend to just keep that distance and not allow the intimacy and vulnerability needed to see the person.

The goddess of the week was Isis, representing Mothering and I think it is important to look at the definitions that go behind the titles of mother, grandmother, etc. Are there limiting definitions that you need to let go of? To either create intimacy with your mother, grandmother or to break free of limitations that you are experiencing as a mother? As someone who doesn’t have children, I feel the weight of the meaning behind that as well. I actually think there is much more empowering meaning behind motherhood than behind women in their mid-30’s who do not have children, for whatever reason. However – the only way the meaning can affect you is if you are choosing that meaning in your life. (I obviously have some letting go to do!)

Patty’s Challenge: Look at the definitions and meaning that society has given the terms mother and grandmother and also the definitions that you have created. They can be referred to as “shoulds”. Come up with an affirmation that takes the place of those shoulds that empowers you.


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