This week I took our daughter to see Waitress at the Overture Center here in Madison. What a tender, full, hilarious, humble and sweet story; the voices a see-saw, back and forth from audience to performer. As the story blossomed and exploded like a bag of flour from the stage, so did all of us playgoers with competing laughter, tears and roars of applause.
As the pie crust curtain came down with a final swish, I needed to take some time and take a breath, dry off my face and neck and gather some composure. This show took me somewhere else and I needed to come back to Madison.
My mother was a singer and actress and my short childhood with her was doused in musicals like All That Jazz, Finian’s Rainbow, Annie, A Chorus Line, The King & I, Pippin, Funny Girl, Fanny, and Bye Bye Birdie. I am sure there were more, but these were the favorites and the ones I saw over and over and OVER. I do not know much about her but what I do know is that she was beautiful; she made people laugh, she was nutty and spontaneous, looked great in fishnet tights, could sing Send in the Clowns like an angel and somehow have the ability to make that torturous song sound promising and she had dreams; for herself and for me.
We do not always get the chance to have mothers we can watch and model; sometimes we need to be different kinds of mothers and never repeat the mistakes of the past; sometimes our mothers are incredible mysteries left to be solved; sometimes we need to look in the mirror and give our babies everything we have and know that that is enough because we are mama bear and we’ve got this.
“Sometimes I see her
My Mother the dreamer…”
A Soft Place To Land – Sara Bareilles
One thought on “A Soft Place”
Sometimes, despite being cheated of a full childhood with a mother, a person becomes an inspiring mother herself who leads her family with fierce love, an unshakable moral compass, and the bravery to laugh and cry and rage when life requires it. She becomes the kind of mother who is both exactly who she always was before kids and completely and forever transformed by the existence of her children in this world.