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Mothers and Daughters


A portrait series taking a deeper look at the complex relationship.

Each set are being asked the same questions.

1. What is a quality or aspect of your personality you think you share?


2. What is an aspect of your personality you think is most different?


3. What is something you learned from your mother or daughter that you could not have learned from anyone else?

Izzi, Eleanor, Cherri, with grandmother, Jan

Izzi on her moms


1. My mom (Cheri) and I are both perfectionists when it comes to school/ work. We both set very high expectations for ourselves.


My other mom (Eleanor) and I both really value our alone time (or as she would call it, regrouping). It is an important time to either gather our thoughts, relax, or make a to-do list.


2. Mom (Cheri) and I have different ideas about what is worth spending money on. 

Mom is very into coupons, budgeting, and not spending money on stuff you don't need. I totally get that (kind of), however I think that it is perfectly fine to splurge on a nice shirt or a smoothie every once in a while. This is why my other mom (Eleanor) and I have to hide price tags whenever we go shopping.


I am much chattier than Mama (Eleanor), and she is a much better listener than I am, which might contribute to how we get along well. Usually, after a day of school and volleyball, I have a whole lot to say. She is very patient while she listens (which is probably one of the many reasons why she was such a great therapist), and when I ask her how her day was, her answer is usually pretty brief.


3. When I was in eighth grade, I went through a really hard time when I was constantly thinking about what dying is like and what the point of life is. Whenever I didn't want to be alone I usually went to my mom (Eleanor) because she is very spiritual. Through her I learned that not every question needs to have an answer.

For friend or school (social) advice, I usually go to my other mom (Cheri). She is really good at respecting other people's feelings while also advocating for herself and staying true to her values. She has helped me learn how to put myself in other people's shoes and how to feel emotions very deeply.


Cheri on her daughter, Izzi


1. Izzi and I share the quality of determination…which some would say shows itself by our being quite stubborn or strong-willed. I watch Izzi on the volleyball court and I see myself sometimes (though she’s a much better athlete than I ever was!). She really GOES FOR IT!  


2. My daughter is incredibly creative and artistic.  I am resourceful and a good problem solver, sometimes being able to think “outside of the box,” but that’s where my creativity ends.  Izzi is able to see things that I don’t see, envision them, capture them, and even put them on paper.  


3. Izzi really has taught me that miracles can happen – because she is one!  I never imagined I could create a life, let alone a human who is so strong, capable, smart, athletic, funny, and talented….as well as beautiful. There really must be a god figure out there to allow lives to be created. It’s absolutely incredible to see her grow and change so much. 

Eleanor on her daughter, Izzi


1. Izzi and I both love to learn. She delves into her studies with enthusiasm and doesn't seem to mind homework. Though I am long past the days of school, I still love to learn. I have a PhD and countless achievement certificates just because "I could". Even today, in retirement, I still challenge myself by attempting to learn Buddhism.


2. Over many years I have modified that worldview significantly, but generally I am a rule follower. Izzi only follows the rules if she chooses them, and resists outside authority. She is open to talking, but is extremely hard headed. Even though this makes it a little difficult as her parent, I admire the trait.  It will serve her well in her adult years.


3. I have learned that being light hearted makes the world a better place to live in.  The more I argue with Izzi the less progress I make.  The more I am able to step back, assess the situation and lighten up, the better connection we have.


I learned that not every question needs to have an answer.

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