Sunday, May 10, 2009

My Momma Bear.

I don't think I appreciated just how incredible my mom is until I became a mother myself. She has been the one constant in my life, and has seen me through every hurdle and success, and every bump along the way.

I imagine in the early years, it was really hard to be a single mom at 28 years old, with a rambunctious 3 year old. When she tells me about our life in Montreal and Ottawa, the focus is never how hard it was. It is always how much she loved me, tales of my reaction of awe to my first baby doll, about me running in circles every morning while she tried to get us out the door, as my budgie attempted to swoop down on my head of blond curls, and me finding one excuse or another to crawl into bed with her in the middle of the night, every night.
If you like me, and think I do an okay job at this motherhood thing, you should know right now, that I learned it all from her. My childhood was filled with crafts, baking, colouring and the colour pink (which I could NOT get enough of). It was filled with hugs and kisses, bedtime stories, and all the love in the world. Even when times were tough for her, she let me be a kid. And when I was angry at my birth father for not being around, instead of piling on and venting her own frustration with him, she tried to protect my heart, and my relationship with him, by telling me it was okay to be mad, but reminding me that I didn't actually hate him, that I just missed him. That must have been really hard.

She was the mom who would stay up all night before Halloween to make sure my crazy Pink Panther costume that she sewed from scratch, was perfect. She was the mom who got me the fancy ballerina birthday cake. She was the mom who nourished my creative spirit and never discouraged me from pursuing my love of music. She is the mom who would do anything for her children, often sacrificing her own wants and needs to make sure my brother and I have everything a kid could ask for.

In recent years, our relationship has shifted. Our mother-daughter bond has remained strong, but we have also become best friends. As I get older, I look to her for guidance on not just being a mom, but on being a woman. It really is true that the older you get, the smarter your parents get, or in my case, the smarter my mom gets (wink). She props me up on days when I feel like I am not a good enough mom, not doing enough for Max and feeling like Cameron doesn't get the attention she deserves. She reminds me that sometimes you just have to "shut your nasty little eyes and go to bed", and start again tomorrow. She tells me that I am doing a good job, and that she is proud of me. She comes for Christmas when I am pregnant and cooks the whole meal all by herself.When Cameron was born on my birthday, I was so focused on giving birth, that the cosmic beauty of the day escaped me. I didn't think about the fact that exactly 34 years earlier, my own mother had the exact same experience on that very day. That she gave birth to her own daughter that last day of April, and here I was, on that very same day, doing it all over again. Talk about déjà vu! I loved that I got to share that day with her, as a daughter and a mother.
There is so much more to say, and I'm likely not doing my mom justice. If you have been fortunate enough to meet my mom, you know what an incredibly smart, beautiful, generous, strong, loving woman she is. I only hope I can be half the mother to my kids that she has been to me.

Happy Mother's Day Momma Bear!

Love, Katrina Bear.


  1. Karen K1:36 p.m.

    Very nice article about your mom. I agree with what you say. One tends to appreciate their parents even more, especially their moms after they become moms themselves. You realised then how much sacrifices they had to make bringing us up. I sure do, and I wished everyday that I live a lot closer to them so that they can come visit us often, or spend more time with my daughter. Anyway, have a Wonderful and Deserving Mother's Day, Kat!!

  2. Karen K1:39 p.m.

    Cameron must have got her natural curls from you? ;)

  3. Anonymous1:52 p.m.

    Happy Mother's day my fellow Mother Warrior--you are most deserving to enjoy this day. We both have been blessed with fantastic moms, I agree to be half of what they are to us (their children) to our own, then I know our kids are very lucky and very much loved. I bet everytime you look at Cam you see your Mom...she resembles her so much.

  4. Anonymous3:56 p.m.

    As mothers, it is our God-given right to question ourselves. To ask ourselves nearly every day, "Was I the best mom I could be today"? And as we should! After-all, in life we measure most everything that we feel has great value or tremendous impact. What is more important than our role as mothers?

    As a single-mother, I would bet that I ask this question of myself twice as often. Ah, the power of good old-fashioned Catholic guilt.

    I would also bet that the answer I so desperately want to believe, likely eludes me more often too.

    Kat - Your Mother's Day tribute to your mom is a beacon of hope for mothers everywhere; and especially for the single ones. Evidence that it can and often does turn out just the way a mother dreams it will... With a heartfelt thank you from her successful, inspiring, and truly beautiful daughter.