Hello, everyone and thank you for stopping by again to read my take on my next literary adventure. This month, in honor of Mother's Day I review Mom & Me & Mom by Maya Angelou. Of her many autobiographies, this one chronicles her relationship with her mother, Vivian Baxter, who she simply referred to as "Lady."
Her mother, unable to properly care for Maya and her brother when they were 3 and 5 years old, respectively, sent her children to live with their grandmother in Stamps, Arkansas. When she finally met and came to live with her mother at age 13, Vivian Baxter was a virtual stranger to Maya. This is partially why she chose to call her mother "Lady" instead of mom. The other reason was because Vivian did not look like a mother to her, but instead looked like a glamorous woman, which is what Maya imagined a lady should look like.
With time, Maya overcame that rejection she felt from her mother by being sent away at such a young age and forgave her. It was both interesting and sad reading about a daughter becoming acquainted with her mother at age 13, afraid of being cast aside once again. As a reader, I found it more difficult to forgive Vivian Baxter, but I eventually did as well.
In this story of forgiveness and redemption, the reader sees their relationship unfold and how Lady came to have such a positive impact on her daughter's life despite stepping into it at a later age.
Not every mother and daughter relationship is positive. In fact, many are tumultuous, faulty, and have their highs and lows. I believe many children that come from strained parental relationships have a deep seated desire, whether conscious or unconscious, to one day heal the hurt and have a more ideal relationship. And, if the parent passes away before the relationship can be redeemed, it makes grieving more difficult because the possibility of repairing the relationship is gone. The fact that Maya had the opportunity to forgive her mother and develop a complete relationship with her before she passed away in her nineties was a miracle.
*Mrs. Hoffman was provided with a free copy of this book from Netgalley.com*