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Thursday, 07 April 2016 09:07

Special luncheon for those women silently suffering

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American founding father Benjamin Franklin once said, “Virtue and happiness are mother and daughter.”


Sadly, everyone in life knows every situation isn’t always perfect and for whatever reason some family relationships are sometimes broken, especially those between mother daughter.
Piapot-area resident Tracy Bowie wants to help alleviate the pain suffered by some people over a lifetime.
Bowie is organizing a Motherless Daughter’s Day Luncheon at Maple Creek’s Redmond House for May 1. She is calling it an event which is open to any “woman who has suffered early mother loss and who would like to connect with others who understand their unique grief experience.”
Bowie is a motherless daughter. Her mother died of ovarian cancer at the age of 48 when Tracy was 14 — a very vulnerable time in any child’s life. Hence, Bowie wants to have women get together to be able to share their pain and experiences with others who understand the situation.
“The luncheon is for any woman who experienced early mother loss and who would like to connect with others who understand,” she explains. “Attendees will be able to to share as much or as little of their personal experiences as they wish. I am hoping there will be interest in future events and the formation of a group is a distinct possibility. If nothing else, a recognition that we are not alone, that our grieving processes are ongoing and, while intense, are eerily similar.”
The idea for the luncheon actually came from Hope Edelman’s book Motherless Daughters. Shortly after it was published, groups formed for support and resources, says Bowie. One group, Motherless Daughters of Los Angeles decided to host a luncheon. That was 20 years ago. Other cities have followed suit.
Bowie hadn’t heard of the luncheon event until Edelman posted to Facebook a reminder to prior organizers that the time was near and an invitation for any new organizers to contact her about hosting an event in their areas. Bowie responded to that. A quick internet search revealed the nearest support group was Vancouver. There are two Facebook groups based in Edmonton and Red Deer however, they do not meet or host events on a regular basis. If there are any others out there, they did not make themselves visible. It seemed wrong to Bowie there was nothing locally or even provincially.
“I bought Ms. Edelman’s book when it first came out in 1994. I have reread it many times as well as her other books and never without crying through and being comforted by it,” explains Bowie.
Another reason in trying to initiate such an event was because of the lack of resources and understanding which seems to be prevalent. As she states in the event notice, “It is not an issue that is often talked about  — women who lost their mother before they were 25 were just supposed to ‘deal with’ it, the same as a well-established adult. However, to lose a parent in the formative years, especially a daughter with a mother, results in the loss being felt continually through the rest of her life.”
“In organizing the luncheon, I approached various third parties to find out what support situation was in southwest Saskatchewan and was amazed that I could not be directed to a person or department, with one exception, that could handle my inquiry about earl mother loss,” Bowie says. “I could find many generalized options and everyone was as helpful as could be I am sure, but I believe I may have been the first to ask about such a specific issue. The professionals were very familiar with grief, death and dying, but with no personal experience on the subject.”
She notes only women such as daughters or mothers truly understand the bond between the two.
“It’s difficult to explain; it is not common,” explains Bowie. “Mothers play such an important and consistent role in our development that is unimaginable for her not to see  our childhood through. A motherless daughter makes her way through life feeling alone, because chances are all her friends are building relationships with their mothers, be they good or bad ones and she is envious of the process either way. A motherless daughter’s development is suspended in time. In many ways she remains the age she was when the loss occurred, just as her mother never ages. All women have mothers, those with living ones simply cannot fathom any other scenario.
“It is not basic information we use to introduce ourselves although we feel it is blatantly obvious to anyone we meet: (it’s a) void. A motherless daughter does not discuss her continued grief easily because the expectation of anyone who is not suffered this type of loss is that she should be ‘over it already’, 10, 20, 30 years or more after it occurred.”
The Motherless Daughters Day Luncheon will take place at what Bowie describes as the beautiful historic Redmond House in Maple Creek (309 Marsh St). It starts at 11 a.m. and there will be a guest speaker as well. Cost is $40, but seating will be limited to 30. Email Tracy at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or phone 306-558-4408. Deadline is April 27. Advance tickets only and seating is limited.

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Ryan Dahlman

Managing Editor