The Seven Ages of Mom
To all the mothers out there, this is my tribute to you (and to Shakespeare, in a way, for the inspiration), but especially to my own mother, Sheila Ives, for being such a great example to me of what a mother should look like in all stages of motherhood. I love you, Mom, and will always appreciate the role you have played and are still playing in my life!
“The Seven Ages of Mom” by Dusty Crabtree
All of the home is a mother’s realm
and all her children are jewels in her crown.
The children have their entrances and exits.
And one mother in her time plays many parts.
Her roles being seven ages. At first, the mother of an infant,
sleep-deprived and unsure, yet basking in the joys of new motherhood.
Then, the mother of a whining toddler, with her time-outs and
daily lessons, teaching how to behave, but also
adoring the simple ways love is shown. And then the mother of a child,
curbing the complaining and arguing with stern but loving words
and wiping away tears with encouragement. Then the mother of a teenager,
full of wisdom and rules, and hardened like steel against rolled eyes,
Nervous of dating, quick to offer advice,
Seeking only to show her love and offer her help
even as it’s not appreciated. And then the mother of the college student
in apprehension at the thought of this new independence,
with pride in her heart, and tears of both joy and sadness,
full of happiness each weekend the spare room is filled with life again,
which gradually becomes less and less frequent. The sixth age shifts
into the caring and generous grandmother,
with love for her grandkids, and advice for the parents,
Her words this time cherished greatly as precious gems
by her children, but her rules now slackened for her grandkids,
turning towards carefree playtime, reaping the benefits
of the seeds she’s sown that have flourished into new growth. Last stage of all,
That ends this magnificent yet mystical privilege called motherhood,
is the memories that live on past her earthly life,
eternal teaching, eternal wisdom, eternal inspiration, eternal love.
In case you want to see the original poem by Shakespeare, “The Seven Ages of Man,” to compare, here it is…
All the world’s a stage,
And all the men and women merely players,
They have their exits and entrances,
And one man in his time plays many parts,
His acts being seven ages. At first the infant,
Mewling and puking in the nurse’s arms.
Then, the whining schoolboy with his satchel
And shining morning face, creeping like snail
Unwillingly to school. And then the lover,
Sighing like furnace, with a woeful ballad
Made to his mistress’ eyebrow. Then a soldier,
Full of strange oaths, and bearded like the pard,
Jealous in honour, sudden, and quick in quarrel,
Seeking the bubble reputation
Even in the cannon’s mouth. And then the justice
In fair round belly, with good capon lin’d,
With eyes severe, and beard of formal cut,
Full of wise saws, and modern instances,
And so he plays his part. The sixth age shifts
Into the lean and slipper’d pantaloon,
With spectacles on nose, and pouch on side,
His youthful hose well sav’d, a world too wide,
For his shrunk shank, and his big manly voice,
Turning again towards childish treble, pipes
And whistles in his sound. Last scene of all,
That ends this strange eventful history,
Is second childishness and mere oblivion,
Sans teeth, sans eyes, sans taste, sans everything.