Performing Without a Net

Image Courtesy of Pixabay

Day 282

Ever heard someone say “you’re more like your mother/father every day” or something similar? Do you ever sit back and wonder if you are like your parents? Does that make you happy or does it create anxiety?

There is much about us that is passed down through our DNA — some scientists even think trauma alters our DNA and can be passed through generations. If science proves such a theory, it is hard to fathom what that may mean for countless innocent children.

I do think there is a part of us that develops through experience and exposure — both good and bad. Maybe through such experience, we form our own internal voice, our gut, that alarms us when things head in a bad direction. I think it is also the part of us that separates us or binds us, to our parents.

After my first child was born, my father lovingly told me I looked just like my mom after their first child was born. I could see it was a warm and beautiful memory for him. I took it as a compliment. I always thought my mom was beautiful and loving and kind.

As I have aged, however, I realize how far apart I am from my parents’ thinking. As much as I loved and respected them, there are areas in which we differ tremendously. I am able to easily reject ideas they had about certain things that do not fit with my way of thinking. I am sure changes in social mores also have a lot to do with altering the way we perceive things. I sometimes wonder what my mother would think about the woman I have become.

Yesterday, my daughter called me. I answered and she responded by telling me how much just the sound of my voice soothed her. That made me smile. I always want to be a comfort to my children. I stopped for a moment to see if I could recall the sound of my mother’s voice in my mind. It is harder now than it once was, but it is still there.

All the years we spend in this life are practice for becoming… And becoming is always unfurling. I am content with my life and I realize that throughout all the good and the bad, I have been practicing for the day I could perform without a net.

No parents to catch me when I fall now, but hopefully, all the years of practice have made me steadier on my feet. A little braver and a little more confident.

I am my parent’s daughter. I have inherited traits that are undeniable. But I have also become a different person, separate from them. And as much as I love my parents and all they taught me, I am happy to be this transformed little girl that they brought into this world. I believe they would be proud of me.

I hope my children will develop beyond me, too. I have always been proud to be their safety net. Now I want to sit back and watch them fly.

“My parents blessed me with directives to think,
to be aware of my choices and their repercussions.
They were always trying to teach me how to think,
rather than what to think.”
Cathy Burnham Martin


18 thoughts on “Performing Without a Net”

    1. Wilma, I am not sure how I missed responding to most of the comments on this post, but I wanted to say thank you.


  1. Although I have no children, I can relate to so much of this post, Maggie. My wife tells me that I get more like my Mum every day. More in her habits, rather than opinion or personality. I see my grandmother in my cousins too, as they age alongside me. Put all of us in a maternal family photo, and there is no mistaking that we are all very closely related indeed.
    I also take some comfort in that. The circle of life continues, and though the names and ideas change, the appearance stays the same.
    Best wishes, Pete.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Pete, this is in response to an old post where I somehow missed responding to all the comments. I, too, see more now how much I resemble my family members. Many of those resemblances did not show up until I got older. Maybe that’s because I never witnessed their young faces. Thank you for your response.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. It is wonderful to see our own kids grow into the adults they become, sharing some of our traits and differing in others. I remember gasping when I saw my daughter’s belly ring many years ago. I never would have done that!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Elizabeth, I missed responding to almost everyone on this old post. I chuckled when I read your comment. My children did a lot of things I never would have done. It they have so many family traits that reveal their heritage.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Such a beautiful post. A funny thought came to me the other day. My mother thought my music was incomprehensible (Beatles) and I sure feel that way about some of my kids music. I am more like my mom than I ever thought i would be. It’s not all bad. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  4. We hear these words the entire time here! I don’t know what the science will prove but many children are really judged sometimes if they have parents with bad habits or character, they don’t get the chance to prove they’re different
    I say maybe we take some traits or behaviors from parents but eventually we build our own unique character especially regarding the things we don’t agree with our parents on (like anger, fanaticism, short temper….etc) but despite we hear the entire time you’re like your mother/ father/ aunt …
    Sometimes it’s good and sometimes it’s not
    Have a good time 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I failed to respond to all these comments on this post. I wanted to take time now to say that I understand exactly what you are saying here. My sister was always told she had our father’s temper. I think that always clouded her idea of who she was.


  5. I like the part where your dad said that about you, with your firstborn. That’s just lovely.
    How about if you really don’t like your mean Aunt Carol and the older you get you see more of mean Aunt Carol in your mirror? I just wanna look like my mother, but I don’t so much. I look like my father, but he didn’t have longer hair, so instead I see his sister. Ugh. It’s rotten. Not enough to make me mean, thank you very much.
    I do find I’m a lot like my parents. And generally, happy with that 😀
    Anyway, these sort of genetic/anthropological thoughts are of great interest to me. You wrote this well.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ah, Joey, we just accept that our facial structure is a result of DNA and nothing more. If you can look in the mirror and reflect the kind generosity and spirit that you hold, then the way the bones are put together doesn’t matter much. We are loved for what is inside I think.


Comments are closed.