Life at No.22, Musings

An Inspiring Woman

International Women’s Day always makes me feel staunch in my worldwide demands for women’s rights. I have been to my share of marches to demonstrate emotion and outrage. Instead of focusing on how much further we must go for equal rights. I will concentrate on one extraordinary woman. She has and still does positively impact my life and everyone who knows her.

Our Mum

Your love and time spent before marriage were your horses, and by all accounts, you excelled. Then came nursing, which was not easy for a shy country lass who was more comfortable surrounded by animals and the country air.

Mum and one of her horses, and the cat came along for the ride

When you became a young wife and mother, the horses and nursing had to be put aside for a while. Still hard to understand why women had to give up their careers for motherhood.

Mum – main street in Gisborne

You have indeed been a patient, loving, and caring Mum over the years unless a specific child pushed her luck, then the tables were turned, not usually to my advantage. As a young Mum, you were not that comfortable in a kitchen when the large vegetable garden and outside beckoned your endlessly busy hands; it was a thing that needed to be done. Feeding our hunger was always satisfied with homemade treats and dinners to take us through to another day. Some (one) of us tried for more when our eyes seemed bigger than our stomachs and were always stopped by a voice from the other room, “Get your hands out of the biscuit tin”. How do mothers always know when something is a miss?

Mum – myself as a baby with cousin Jenny
Mum and me

Oh, remember those knitting and sewing events? I call them events as they were so memorable. You trying to get that machine knitted jumper over our heads, our ears felt like they were being disconnected from our heads, with a fling back into place for good measure. Those knitted jumpers kept us warm, with a suggestion that we could wear them to bed and bypass the ear distortion. Then there was the attempt at sewing; the result was a matching top and trousers in a paisley pattern and the material made of polyester for us girls. A seventies style I am pleased to never wear again.

You returned to work when your youngest child was in his early teens, which renewed your life energy; for a few hours, you weren’t a mother or a wife; you were a working woman called Noeline with so much to give to the broader community. You showed great empathy to the elderly you cared for, and I remember many thoughtful deeds you did for them in your time. Then there was golf, an outlet you and Dad enjoyed separately and as a couple.

Having Parkinson’s diagnosed at 60 years old never held you back for long, and you fought for your independence until it wasn’t physically possible. I will always admire your strength in dealing with this disease. Mentally as sharp as a tack, with a healthy sense of humour and fondly referred to as “Mrs Google”, when a family disagreement couldn’t be resolved, you would quietly go to your computer and find an answer. We waited with baited breath to see who was right. On most occasions, you were.

Recent girls’ morning tea at a local cafe

There are too many memorable events to cover here, where you have loved and supported us all; let’s say you did rather well to survive bringing up five children within seven years. We all still marvel at how you managed to do this. 

Today, you got to beat me at scrabble, tomorrow is another day, and it might include another game, a win for me.? She smiles.

17 thoughts on “An Inspiring Woman”

  1. What a wonderful tribute to your Mum! I’m sorry she’s having to deal with Parkinson’s (I know first hand how tough that is, as my father as well as my husband’s aunt both had it) but she seems to be coping well and still finding plenty to enjoy in life 🤗

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I adored this. So much of what you wrote reminds me of my mum – still more comfortable in riding boots gardening than in a kitchen – and always wishing she had something to put under the saddle that she still holds on to.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks very much, Jo, pleased you enjoyed reading my post. I love that your Mum still has her saddle. I think I would rather be out in a garden than in the kitchen even though I mostly enjoy cooking/baking.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. How wonderful to have a relationship like this with Mum, and what a lovely tribute to her this is. The changes she’s weathered in our world, and still with a beautiful smile. I remember those jumpers that nearly pulled your ears off too, and my daughter had a little pink paisley trouser suit of the kind you mention, made by my Mum, long since gone from our lives.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m not sure why I’ve missed so many comments. Many apologies for not replying soon, Jo.
      Mum would’ve seen so many changes, and she’s adapted so well, especially with technology. She was a texting whizz.


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