[Originally published five years ago on my Semper Gaudete blog.
Today, Mother’s Day, I’m going to blog about the perfect mother.
Most mothers, both real and fictional, are not perfect; they make mistakes from time to time. Not even Mrs. March in Louisa May Alcott’s Little Women was perfect.
Remember the chapter called “Jo Meets Apollyon”, where
Amy burned the book Jo had worked on for several years
because Jo wouldn’t let her come to the theater with her
and Meg and Laurie?
Jo was, of course, furious with Amy… just as I would have been,
just as almost anybody would have been.
But how did Mrs. March, Marmee, handle the situation?
“Mrs. March came home, and, having heard the story,
soon brought Amy to a sense of the wrong she had done her sister.”
That’s it. We never find out just how she “brought Amy to a
sense of the wrong she had done her sister.” We never learn
what Marmee said to Amy.
Mrs. March, in fact, seemed much more concerned about Jo’s very
understandable anger than about Amy’s deliberate, vindictive
destruction of Jo’s property.
If I were a mother, I’m sure that I would not be perfect either.
For example, I might scold or punish a child undeservedly, or too severely. On the other hand, I might “look the other way” when I ought to exercise some parental discipline.
In all the history of the world, there has been only one perfect Mother.