Friday, November 16, 2012

Young Women (and One Not-So-Young)

On each of the past two days, it's been my great privilege to spend time with a young woman from my children's circle of friends.  Both girls are in the process of returning to school after times of considerable difficulty, and each of them had asked to meet with me for some support and encouragement and advice on how to handle the challenges of the next few weeks.  They are, both of them, beautiful, gifted, and generous young women with, I hope and imagine, brilliant futures ahead of them.
As I drove home from one of these meetings at a local coffee shop tonight, I was at first astounded to realize that I have become a mentor to young women, and that I actually have knowledge and wisdom to impart.  When did that happen?
And then I was very much touched, that they would seek me out.  I imagined what it would have been like for me, at their ages -- a graduating law student when I was twenty-five, a lawyer when I was thirty -- to have had a woman a generation older than I from whom to seek advice and reassurance.  There was no such person.
And so: Something missing entirely from my own life now presents itself as a lovely opportunity from the other side.  Exactly what my experience of mothering has always been.
And, a Mystery:  The young ladies at church, the few of them we have, never approach me in this way.  That's been a disappointment and a conundrum to me, as I've always had great relationships with my middle school and high school students.
"Mom, you can be an extremely intimidating person," says my son. 
I seriously doubt that very much.  But maybe it helps that these young women knew me when they were little girls and I was a mom in jeans and flip-flops, making them PB&J sandwiches and rummaging in the freezer for popsicles. 

Something to consider.


  1. What a wonderful position in which to find yourself. I have to admit, I'm envious... :)

  2. Some young women are wiser than others. They are the ones that seek you out.

  3. I have found myself making a practice out of seeking mentoring relationships with older women. The ones I identify generally have a good deal of perceptive wisdom, care, and common sense. Perhaps that's part of what they see in you . . . ??

  4. I was blessed to have several women in my church who were a generation older than me that guided me along. How fortunate I was. You are offering such a gift to these young women. Methinks they must sense the wisdom you have.