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Sally was retired and now wondered what role she had in life. Her daughter, Mandy, had her own job and was soon moving out. Despite her support, Sally felt Mandy no longer wanted to be around her, as they often erupted in disagreement.

One day, Sally said, “You know, Mandy, after 28 years of being a mother, it isn’t easy to resist wanting to help you.”

Mandy smiled gently. ” I understand, Mom, and I need you to understand. There is nothing noble about being superior to your fellow man; true nobility is being superior to your former self. I want to be independent and helpful like you, but how am I to accomplish that if I continue to let you mother me? When I ask you not to help, it isn’t about not needing you. I’m working to improve myself so I can accomplish being who I’m meant to be.”


When a child no longer needs parental guidance, they’re working to discover themselves so they can become what they admired. It’s hard to accept and it signifies a time to rejoice. This piece was inspired by reflection on my changing relationships with my mother and daughter.