I wish I would have met Caroline, my dear wife Karen’s mother

My dear wife Karen's mother, Caroline.

My dear wife Karen’s mother, Caroline.

I sat in the living room of Aunt Pauline’s house out there in Van Nuys years ago, happily in the middle of a California history tour with the woman who’d yet to become my dear wife Karen.

A picture on the TV caught my eye, a framed shot of Aunt Pauline’s sister. I walked over to pick it up, hold it in my hands, give it a nice long look.

“Your mother was a fox!” I told Karen, who looked so much like the woman in the picture I was holding.

Aunt Pauline was not offended by my comment. The visit continued into her kitchen, where she pulled out more albums of family pictures of the days she spent with her sister Caroline, the mother of the woman who now is my dear wife Karen.

Last night, I noticed that my sister-in-law, Lynne, had posted this picture of Caroline on Facebook. It’s not the one that was on Aunt Pauline’s TV set, but it sure is a good one. Last night, Karen told me that it is a familiar picture that she’d see framed at her grandma’s house.

I sure wish I had gotten to meet my mother-in-law Caroline, a foxy woman who brought into this world my wife, who looks so much like her.

Thank you, Caroline, for working so hard to bring up your family of five. I hear good things about you every time Karen and I talk about your family.

I am pretty sure Caroline would have liked me. A good clue is that her sister, Aunt Pauline, liked me a lot. Even the second day we met, after that memorable first visit concluded with me backing our rented Mustang convertible over the daisies at the end of her driveway.

Happy Mother’s Day to all.

Is there a mother out there of somebody special who you never got to meet?

43 thoughts on “I wish I would have met Caroline, my dear wife Karen’s mother

  1. This was so sweet and a special memory of Aunt Pauline. I think Caroline would have asked you to call her “Mom” and you would have been great buds! She was definitely a ‘class act,’ Mark and raised a beautiful and talented woman, Karen! Thanks for the kind Mother’s Day wishes, too! It is good to know I have you as a friend, Mark!


  2. No doubt she would have adored you. Beauty runs in Karen’s family I see. What a great photo. Isn’t it true that it’s a good omen when company takes out a patch daisies in their convertible mustang? Maybe it’s more like, “you can’t bake a [wedding] cake without breaking an egg.” 😉


    • It was more like Karen in the car saying ‘Mark, the daisies!’ Ah, Aunt Pauline was laughing about it the next morning so all was good. Yes, that was a good omen and a now a family proverb, Sandra! 🙂


      • I like your new backdrop and header, Beels. Has a nice feel to it. Isn’t it amazing how simple changes can be high impact? I’m a firm believer in re-arranging the furniture from time to time. Changes your perspective. Do you ever do that?


      • Funny, Sandra, I am not big on actual furniture arranging in the two main rooms of my life. But on the porches and kitchen and guest room, I’m into it!

        The blog header comes from the same spot as the old one, Onondaga Lake Park, the site of my walk with Ellie B in my post today. The old header was taken in the barren winter. This is the rebirth of summer. I was going for the contrast. The background shot is the same place.

        Thank you!


  3. Putting the “daisy” in “oopsy daisy,” I see. It’s all good. There are worse ways to make a first impression.

    I’m sure that Karen’s mother would have liked you. You have a positive aura about you, a good spirit, and you’re always smiling whenever I see you.

    Hope you and Karen had a great weekend, and send her a happy Mother’s Day message as well.


  4. Actually, Mark, I’m the mother of someone special I never got to meet, at least during the 17 hours that she was alive. My personal angel, my daughter Jennifer. I only heard her one cry and caught a blurry glimpse of her as they took her away to the nursery, but it was enough to know she was beautiful, sweet, and special, and that she didn’t have long in this world. But she sits on my shoulder forever, so she is never lost from me.


  5. Mark I am pretty sure your Dear Wife Karen’s mother would adore you. MOre so even than we do. It would probably be because you adore her daughter. How wonderful of you to think of her, and wish to have met her. You have a grand heart friend. 🙂


  6. I would have liked to meet my mum’s mum. But I feel very grateful that when I was about four my parents agreed for my dad’s mum to come and live with us, She was in her 90’s and from Liverpool. We lived in a village miles away. If they hadn’t opened their home to her (and it was a small home) I don’t think I would have got to know her. She passed away after about eighteen months with us and in that time I got to know her and now I remember her well.


    • That is very fantastic, Rachel, that you had that 18 months with your great-grandmother on your dad’s side.

      I also had the opportunity to get to know my father’s grandmother, how lived blocks away from us in New York City for the first four or five years of my life. She used to call me Marek, which was Mark in Polish. She was the only person to do that!

      I know you celebrated your Mother’s Day in the U.K. last month, but I will wish you a happy special Sunday nevertheless, my friend.


      • Thanks for the Mother day wishes mark. That is very special that your fathers grandmother called you by your Polish name.
        Now my grandmother was very disappointed that I wasn’t a boy (she wanted the family name to carry on) so she never called me Rachel. I was known as ‘that child’ ! But I loved her all the same. It never bothered me. I used to play schools with her – me the’ teacher’ getting my grandma to write her name on bits of paper.


  7. Beauitful, Mark, and very heart touching. I wish as well you could have met your wife’s Mother. In fact, you do every day through your wife. Karen has her DNA so her Mom still lives in her. xx Amy


  8. I love this post, Mark. And, let’s see … the mother of somebody special I never got to meet? Hmmm. My mind’s a blank. I guess I’ve gotten to meet a lot of mothers in my life (thank goodness).

    Thinking some more …. I know! I never got to meet the mothers of my (adopted-from-shelters) cats.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.