Quotations on Mothering and Grandmothering
page VII

Arise then, women of this day! Arise, all women who have hearts! ... We, the women of one country, will be too tender of those of another country to allow our sons to be trained to injure theirs....

Julia Ward Howe, promoter of a Mother's Day for Peace

 

So when the great word 'Mother!' rang once more,
I saw at last its meaning and its place;
Not the blind passion of the brooding past,
But Mother -- the World's Mother -- come at last,
To love as she had never loved before --
To feed and guard and teach the human race
.

Charlotte Perkins Gilman

 

No matter how old a mother is, she watches her middle-aged children for signs of improvement.

Florida Scott-Maxwell

 

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.

Tenneva Jordan

 

At work, you think of the children you have left at home. At home, you think of the work you've left unfinished. Such a struggle is unleashed within yourself. Your heart is rent.

Golda Meir

 

And so our mothers and grandmothers have, more often than not anonymously, handed on the creative spark, the seed of the flower they themselves never hoped to see -- or like a sealed letter they could not plainly read.

Yes, Mother. I can see you are flawed. You have not hidden it. That is your greatest gift to me.

Alice Walker

 

Whenever I'm with my mother, I feel as though I have to spend the whole time avoiding land mines.

Amy Tan, The Kitchen God's Wife

 

Women do not have to sacrifice personhood if they are mothers. They do not have to sacrifice motherhood in order to be persons. Liberation was meant to expand women's opportunities, not to limit them. The self-esteem that has been found in new pursuits can also be found in mothering.

The art of living is to function in society without doing violence to one's own needs or to the needs of others. The art of mothering is to teach the art of living to children.

Elaine Heffner

 

Women know
The way to rear up children (to be just)
They know a simple, merry, tender knack
Of tying sashes, fitting baby-shoes
And stringing pretty words that make no sense

Elizabeth Barrett Browning, Aurora Leigh

 

A mother is not a person to lean on, but a person to make leaning unnecessary.

Dorothy Canfield Fisher

 

She was the archetypal selfless mother: living only for her children, sheltering them from the consequences of their actions -- and in the end doing them irreparable harm.

Marcia Muller

 

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