My mother taught me about being an interesting woman, separate from being a mother. Even if she didn’t mean to when I was child, she did. Unlike the boring and routine mothering messages—be kind, be safe, be fair, be honest—the being-an-interesting-human thing flowed non-verbally from her.This was the part of her I found compelling. The Woman part. The being funny and smart and wearing ‘80s wool skirts and heeled boots part. The mothering part, well, that was all top-level and reliable, but as a kid I assumed she HAD to do that. She had to feed me and think I was cuter than all the other kids and make every effort to keep me alive. She had biological imperatives to manage.
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