My maternal great-grandmother had many children that provided numerous grandchildren and countless more descendants. Both she and her daughter (my grandmother) raised their families without the benefits of running water, electricity and all the comforts we take for granted. Without a doubt, these women worked very hard and were exhausted. Yet, when my mom spoke of her grandmother, with a smile she recounted happy memories of Christmas traditions, sleepovers with cousins, feelings of love and kindness.
When I think back to my maternal grandmother, I too smile with happy memories of delicious chicken soup, warm hugs and good times.
I witnessed the strong bond between my mother and her mother. They had a friendship, full of laughter, tears, angry words and forgiveness.
The gift of a mother/daughter friendship continued in the relationship I had with my mom. But I was cheated. Both my great-grandmother and grandmother lived much longer than my mom.
Fortunately the legacy of our maternal family line still continues with the friendship my daughter and I share. We laugh, cry, get angry and forgive. The incredible women we came from left us traditions based on love and kindness to share with the generations to come.