Saturday, January 10, 2015

Mum? Mom?

My mother always signed her cards, and notes to me, Mum. I don't know why but this bothered me, because at school I learned to spell it Mom.

I insisted for her whole life of addressing my cards, and notes, and letters to her as Mom.

What a snot I was.

So, fast forward to the current year and my daughter who always addresses her letters and cards to me as Mum.

My son, always uses Mom.

So, I am both. I sign my cards to my daughter as Mum, and my cards to my son as Mom.

I kinda like this. It is a tangible example that I have a unique relationship with each of my children.

In my life I have many titles: Mrs. Taylor to my students, Mary-Anne to most of my friends, Mary to my husband, my brother, and my dear childhood friend, Auntie Mary-Mann to some of my nieces and nephews, and lately Me-Ann to my adopted grand-daughter, Mum, or Mumma to my daughter, Mom to my son.

I am a sister, a wife, a mother, a friend, a sister-in-law, a teacher, an aunt, a great-aunt, a cousin, a daughter (although now orphaned), a niece and at one time a daughter-in-law (also now orphaned).

So many titles. I have probably missed a few others.

Each of us has so many relationships wrapped up within us, and around us.

I like that I have different names to different people in my life.

Because each of those relationships is unique and our way of naming each other is a part of it.

So in the future, when I speak of my Mum, I will honour her by calling her by the name she wanted.

Because that is the least I can do.


  1. Interesting. I've noticed that Arwen always writes to me as Mum, although I call myself Mom. It's pronounced differently, and Arwen writes it the way she says it. Amanda usually calls me Mamma in notes, but also uses Mom. I write my mother's name Mom but pronounce it Mum. Officials know me as Donna cause that's what's on my driver's licence. People who know me call me Beth, my sister-in-law calls me db for my childhood name of Donna Betz or Betsy. And only to my brother, I am known as Schnoog. He's called me that since early childhood and no one else does. It's my special link to my brother. And lastly, my husband calls me Sunshine which always makes me grin. I agree. I love the unique names I hear from those who have unique relationships with me.

    1. thank you for sharing your names. It is so fascinating isn't it? All the names we have in this one lifetime.

  2. I have recently reconnected with some people I taught about 30 years ago and they immediately called me by a name I hadn't heard for decades... So many recollections were attached to that name... You're right... It's fascinating

  3. I have little pet names for most of my family. My Mum though I call Peg. Originally it was because I thought her teeth looked like pegs (Brat that I was) and the name stuck.I call her it all the time, and a couple of boyfriends I brought home over the years have also addressed her as Peg. They thought it was her name, much to my amusement. Mum took it in good part though.

  4. It's fascinating. In my family, we seldom use pet names.

  5. It's so true how pet names work. They always sewn to mean somethino special to each person. That was a lovely post :)


Add your thoughts....join the conversation.