Friday, November 17, 2006

The Groomed Matriarch

With the Thanksgiving Holiday only a mere 6 days away I seem to feel the anticipation of the family looking forward to another Turkey dinner in honor of all we are thankful for.
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I years past we wrote on either pieces of paper or little cards before dinner and read them or had one read all of them to us after dinner.
One of the most touching ones I can remember was one from our Uncle Glen.
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He wrote about how thankful he was for having a wife that supported him thru Lung cancer and who has always been the love of his life and then at the end he writes and I'm thankful for Connie(His Wife) and Linda's good cooking and all of Ya'll.

He's from Arkansas and has always been a wonderful addition to our family gathering, He's both humorous and witty at the same time. I hope they can make it again this year.

We have the Mr.'s brother Carl and his Wife Michaelann coming also, They are fun to have around and visit with. I'm looking forward to this.

Now to breach a different subject, A Matriarch, A usually (Elderly)? woman that has the wherewithal to know the goings on in a family. Usually has a strong pull and rank and authority. Also known as grandam (or grandame); headmistress, mistress; ma, mama, mammy, mom, momma or family glue.

I don't know if this duty was bestowed upon me or if it was self assumed, My feelings are that I took it with the blessing that my mother passed down to me after she was no longer able to prepare the full meal.

I miss the days when my mother prepared the meal, But to tell you the truth I think my turkey is better. To her credit, I learned at the age of 9 to stuff a turkey and prepare a dinner fit for family. My mother loved to cook but her back was always in terrible pain. Which meant standing and bending and lifting were sometimes impossible for her to do.

I think at the age of 9 she began grooming me for the job. She always commented on how I had soft feelings and lots of understanding for someone of my youth. I then wanted to be the person she saw in me. Baby Sis was only 1 then and quite the handful. I learned to be a mother then when my mother couldn't get out of bed to do the mothering, cooking and cleaning. I remember coming home from school to help mom get the baby cleaned up after her doing what she could during the day. My mom was no slacker either she would push herself till she could no longer do it anymore.

I then assumed laundry and chores that a household of 5 would require, Meaning no outside free time to play with friends. My siblings were my social life.

When I reached maturity as if I wasn't already mature at the young age of 9-10, I took on way more of the holiday cooking and mom still overseeing the secrets, the measurements and ingredients, I think her Matriarch was born...Never fully taking the position till her passing in 1991.
I enjoy this and it can be a heavy weight to some degree, But I look at it as an honorable position. Besides that The daughter said she'll not do it till I have Alzheimer's and can't remember what my food tastes like.
Hmmmm, times sure are different and Thankfully so sometimes...
Whom will I pass this all onto?
It seems nobody wants the responsibility.

I will miss my boys and their wifes and girlfriends this year, I know they'll miss Mom's cooking too. I miss their presence and love.

3 Left A Love Note :):

D.T. said...

Now it makes sense why you are so were groomed at an early age for it. Anyways, have a Happy Thanksgiving and hopefully this year will be the year you can convince The Daughter into the kitchen...

Jeannie said...

Your Mom was right - you have a soft heart and this is probably why you were able to take on so many duties at such a young age and look back without bitterness but with fondness instead. Your Mom must have been a very special person just as you are now - it wasn't just secret recipes she passed on. I suppose that I am the one in our bunch who should be torch bearer as I am the only one that everyone else gets along with. You may inspire me. It's hard with so many other duties right now. Perhaps I should sell up and do that which is truly more important.

Marianne said...

I totally want to be like you when I grow up.