It isn’t unusual that daughters evenually take on their mothers’ characteristics; after all, mothers are our role models. We look to our mothers to figure out to carve out our place in the world as well as manners, habits, and so on. Everything about our moms eventually shows up in our own lives, habits, opinions; we develop who we are based on who our mother is.
For example, my mother was witty, funny, sarcastic, savvy and smart. She could do everything from cleaning a house top to bottom, making fabulous meals, handling money wisely, raising a child and reading everything she could get her hands on. Her mother died of pancreatic cancer when mom was only a young girl. Two of her three older brothers had their own lives and families, and her brother, Raymond (my last remaining uncle, whom I always called “Unkie”) took her in.
Long story short, she survived a lack-luster marriage, got a divorce (nearly unheard of in those days) and raised me to be a good person. When my dad (not the bio dad) came into the picture, Mom and I both adored him, and finally Mom had the life she wanted.
Dad and I had an unspoken agreement: when Mom was in one of her moods we both made it our business to make her happy. She never could stand a mess in the house, and I learned quickly that making my own bed and putting my clothes away helped to keep mom happy.
As all girls do, I followed in my mother’s footsteps. To this day, when I find an empty Kleenex box, I throw it out and replace it with a new one, all the while muttering “would it just kill you to throw it away and replace it yourself?!” While I get that the Crankee Yankee and I were raised about the same way, there was always that mindset from the ’50s that women picked up the mess that men made.
To this day, after eighteen years of marriage, the Crankee Yankee is the best husband ever, BUT he still leaves empty Kleenex boxes (and more!) around. I really believe that he doesn’t do it on purpose; I think he honestly means to toss it, but he gets easily distracted and forgets about it. Then I come steam-rolling around and mutter and throw the damn thing away and replace it.
So yes; I truly am becoming my mom. Where she is now, I’m positive that she is laughing her head off about all the things I say and do that come directly from her. And while I grump about ‘people who don’t put things away,’ it kind of tickles me that I am more like her than I thought.