Our “Casting a Wider Net” series features mothers around the world whose voices have typically been excluded from the blogosphere, due to lack of access to the internet, low literacy or poverty. This feature aims to include their important and distinct perspectives with interviews and occasional video clips.
My grandmother, even at 91, never ceases to amaze me. She has fought back from accidents and illness, car wrecks and strokes, with unexpected strength and optimism, probably from a deep drive to feel fully engaged in the world. When my grandfather, the love of her life, widowed her over 30 years ago, she saw past her grief to discover new joys, taking up folk dancing and beginning a new career as a pre-school teacher. Today, her hands shake, the result of essential tremors, but that was beside the point when she decided to take up pottery – a unquestionably physical art form – in her 8th decade of life. Her brightly colored ceramic creations fill her small apartment and she makes gifts of them for her 5 grandchildren and growing brood of “greats.”
But it’s not just her zest that draws you in. She’s warm, the kind of woman it’s easy to open up to, a good listener and curious question-asker. It’s probably this quality, along with her undeniably sweet demeanor, that has kept her in companionship since my grandfather passed. And it’s this quality that made me want to turn the tables and ask her questions. (more…)