There are few more influential women in your life than your mum. Whether your relationship is amazing or appalling that single connection can shape so much of who you are.
In this regards, I am blessed.
I know a lot of people think their mum is cool, but they haven’t met my Mum. No matter what hair brained scheme I ever had, my mum always encouraged me to follow my dreams. She told me I could be whatever I wanted to be and not to live small.
I was the kid whose friends wanted to hang with my Mum… in fact, they still do.
The mother of my childhood was a statuesque style queen.
I used to think she was a cross between Annie Lennox and Sheena Easton. She liked cool music, cool clothes, parties, dancing and she had great hair (except for the Laura Ashley period which I’m not allowed to talk about).
As a single mum she’d take me most everywhere with her as a kid and I loved being privy to the adult world, pretending to be asleep at parties but secretly watching the grown ups dancing, smoking, kissing and living it up. As a result I suppose I grew up kind of fast, but I personally think my trajectory in this department was set because of the type of person I am.
I couldn’t wait to be a grown up…. that said, I also slept in my mum’s bed with her for years. Partly because my bedroom was chronically messy, but mostly because I loved spooning up with my Mama in the night and feeling her warmth next to me.
She liked it too.
I guess my growing up process got fast tracked a little when I was about 13 and Mama started getting headaches. Not just any old headaches but real whopper doozies. Her eyesight went blurry and things started getting scary so they did some tests on her.
Initially everyone feared a brain tumour.
She had all the symptoms, but they couldn’t find it so she went from our home in Coffs Harbour to Sydney for more extensive testing.
I was a sensitive kid, hence being a sensitive adult I guess, and I was devastated that I couldn’t make my mum better. I remember holding her hand and massaging her head trying to take her pain away as she lay on the bed in tears.
Alas, I was just a kid, and she had something happening inside her that was beyond our control.
The thing about my mum is she is the most vibrant, fun, and fun loving person I know. She is wise, she is spiritual and there ain’t much that could shock her.
I’ve always been able to tell her all of my sex, drugs and rock’n’roll stories and more that once I’ve heard her say -
Danielle, did you have to tell me that????
But I do. Because I can. And that’s a gift.
I hope one day my kids like me as much as I like my mum. I hope they turn to me when they have sensitive and painful scars to share, or deep fears that they want soothed.
Over the years many of my friends have adopted her as their own, and now the people she lists as her dear friends range from 18 years old to 90. She spans the ages because she is open to everyone- Open minded and open hearted.
She can cook a mean feast and she can drink up a storm and she has so many wonderful qualities that define who she is.
Multiple Sclerosis is not who my mum is. Her illness does not define her. It’s an aspect of her life just as much as all of the wonderful things and she had often said MS has been a teacher that has taught her valuable life lessons.
My mum is fun, and loving, and silly.
My mum is gentle and fierce, and fucking brave.
She is also an unbelievable Nana. She reckons these little stinkers have given her a new lease of life.
If I’m half the women she is when I grow up then I’m gonna be a whole lotta awesome.
Thanks for coming to stay with me, Mama. Can you babysit tomorrow?
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