“I remember my mother, standing at the counter in her shop. She always made time to chat with a customer, always had a smile ready for them, always had something interesting to share with them, always went out of her way to make even the most difficult ones happy. Thinking How Will My Children Remember Me? She stocked her shelves with beautiful wares, a dazzling array in the light from the picture window. She spent long hours at the sewing machine, painstakingly producing her best work. Even when she came home at night, her work continued. Sometimes I crept from my bed and saw her at the kitchen table, head bent over the books as she tried her best to eke out a profit, and I knew, even then, that she did all this for us, for the good of our family. From her I learned kindness, a good work ethic, love, and self-sacrifice. God bless Mama for all that she did.”
How Will My Children Remember Me?
That’s approximately how I’d like my children to remember me. But that’s not my kids memoir. Oh no. That would read something more like this:
“I remember Mum at the computer in the morning, checking her e-mail, checking her Facebook page, checking her orders. I remember her in the afternoon, working on Excel documents. I remember her googling business conferences and trade shows and staring at blog after blog, trying to find her target demographic. “
Or it could be worse. It could be, “My mother spent all day staring at the computer while everything fell to pieces around her.”
Any Guilt Here
This is guilt talking—I feel bad about how much time I spend on the computer and on my business in general, I constantly evaluate how I should alter my daily routine, whether I should quit my business altogether, what. But it’s also envy talking—I envy some mother of yore who kept a little shop and whose work was so much more visible and attractive. She might envy me my ability to work from home, to access so many resources. Who knows? I think the evaluation and introspection are good, and I hope that my routine will evolve to be better and better for my family and I. The envy is just silly, though. If I’m doing my best, won’t my kids know it?
Mom Worked Hard
My kids will likely be even more technologically savvy than me. For that reason, they may remember me more graciously than I dare hope: “Mumma worked hard all day on this slow old computer with a spotty internet connection. She struggled to take care of us and the house while running a business. She took breaks to read to us. She had to learn to take time off even though her customers could access her at any time, day or night. She agonized over whether to pour more valuable hours into a business that was only slowly gaining speed. She didn’t do everything right, but she wanted the best for us, and she wanted to help other people. God bless Mama for all that she did.”