I’m kind of a political junkie. I’ve been avidly following the Democratic and Republican conventions this summer. I’ve watched the speeches, kept up with the delegate count, and cried over the appearances of a Gold Star Mom and the mother of one of the Pulse Nightclub shooting victims. My husband and I have a political consulting business in which we conducted polls and focus groups for candidates and causes. So, I guess it’s natural I would be reading political blogs and watching interviews on news networks. Today as I readied myself for a meeting I listened to Andrea Mitchell’s interview with Missouri Senator, Clair McCaskill. She said something that made me smudge my mascara application. McCaskill, who is 63 years of age (exactly my age) said, “I miss my Mom”. The poignancy of her statement pierced my heart. I knew precisely what she meant.
Regardless of what people think about Hillary Clinton (and there are very few people who don’t have an opinion positive or negative), I’m moved by the magnitude of this moment as the first woman in the history of the United States accepts the presidential nomination of a major political party. My Mom died more than 30 years ago at 49. She was born into poverty in a small South Georgia town. I have no idea where or how she found the resources in Omega, Georgia but somehow she developed a love of literature and opera. She was a voracious reader and received her Masters degree in English weeks before she died. She used to tell me something I also heard Hillary Clinton say in her acceptance speech- “It doesn’t matter where you grow up, it’s what you grow up to be”. My Mom grew up to be a writer. Like my Mom, I’m a writer. My daughter Tracy just graduated with an MFA in Creative Writing and Publication.
At the risk of sounding “like a girl” I do feel a sense of sisterhood as it looks increasingly like a woman may be elected president in November. And, like Claire McCaskill, I’m missing my Mom. I wish she could be here at this momentous time with me. I’m thankful for her inspiration and guidance. I’m so thankful I have my daughter with whom to share this moment. As Clinton said, “We are mothers’ daughters and daughters’ mothers. My mom would have been so proud.