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The Greatest Mom Quality of All Time

My mom was a vixen.

She was a red-haired beauty with watery blue eyes and curvy looks that made men swoon. Compound that with her Julia Child cooking skills and creamy Canadian skin, and you had a fiery stunner. Setting aside all those things from her glory days, what remains with me still is an even greater quality -- her deep ability to listen.

My mom listened to people like it was an Olympic sport. I mean really, really listened. Her listening presence became her superpower. With complete transparency, sometimes her listening was to get what she wanted. But most often it was because she adored nurturing and it embodied who she was as a person.

As a kid, things just showed up when my mom was doing her listening thing. Repairmen would shower her with free repairs. Food delivery reps would shove cases of steaks and ice cream into our deep freezer. As she became older, I noticed things like expensive perfumes, pretty purses, and giant containers of mints that would magically conjure themselves in her tiny apartment. When questioned where she got them, she would wave a hand and pronounce profound gratitude about how people loved to bless her.

Right. I knew why. She was using her superpower again. I knew it well as a kid and witnessed it happening right up until she died at 80. My mom loved to listen. She treasured taking the time to understand everyone who crossed her path. She heard them, asked real questions, and was fully present to see them exactly where they were. People from every walk and in every season bloomed in her presence. She listened to them like they were the most fascinating person in the world. Because to her they were. And they loved to bless her for that rare gift.

In fact, now that my mom is gone, I can remember only a handful of things she said. She certainly was not a saint and like me, deeply flawed. But the thing that stayed with me was the vast presence of seeing me and hearing me in ways no one else did. Listening was truly her gift.

I long for that ability to deeply listen as my mom did. I'm grateful for her example through such a simple thing. In honor of my mom, my invitation this week is to go a shade deeper with those around you by listening well. Whether it's with those who have mothered you well, or with those you are mothering. Or simply with those who cross your path. Practice the beautiful quality of listening to those you love from a truer depth. Not only is this a wonderful quality but you are giving others the rarest of gifts -- all of you.

One of my favorite expressions is, "Live your life in such a way that was worth putting your mother through labor for." This Mother's Day, I hope you will take time to celebrate the life you have been given in honor of the one who labored to give it.


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May 10

What a Beautiful tribute to your mom, in this busy world ,with so much going on all around us ,it is a good reminder how important it is to just "Listen"

Thank you for that reminder:}

Happy Mother's Day!!



May 09

My mom was also a great listener. I can remember one time in particular when she was engaged in asking and listening to someone she'd just met and would never see again. She was truly interested. Thanks for reminding me of that part of her.


May 05, 2022

I love this, Cara. What a loving and beautiful reflection.

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