Do We Ever Really Know Our Mothers


A writer who’s blog I follow wrote –

Quite a few publishers have wanted to see more of the missing mother in my story, yet I wasn’t willing to do that. It would have unraveled the very premise of my novel, which was, how do we cope when the center holding everything together falls apart? When that upon which we most depend disappears?

I wanted the mother to be part of the puzzle, not a presence herself, but that “absent” presence we feel, even yearn for, but cannot quite pin down, and never really know for certain.

Do any of us ever, really, know our mothers? Don’t we only know them through our own often faulty and incomplete perceptions of them? What they’ve allowed us to see, or what we choose to believe? All knowledge is partial and open to revision. We may know the facts that lay before us. But do facts a person make?

~ Deborah Brasket
from “Endings & Beginnings, A Writer’s Life”

You can follow her blog here –

My mom yearned to know her mother.  I know a lot more about her now but she remains slightly vague.  I did find one male cousin who referred to her as Aunt Lou and said she was kind.  I feel I know my dad’s mother better because an aunt and two cousins have given me some insights.  I tried to “know” my grandmothers by writing as though I was them.  I gave up the contrivance.  So what Deborah wrote here just really resonated with me.

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