The Wind Beneath our Wings
Redken's Ann Mincey and I have been friends since we lived in Los Angeles nearly 20 years ago. In comparing notes about our respective mothers over the years, we came to the same conclusion: We were lucky to have them in our lives. At a recent Redken event in Orlando, FL, Ann talked about her mother, who passed away last November. "My mother lived life in hi-def," she said. I knew exactly what she meant. Ann's mother, Pauline Poole, was a minister's wife, and she taught school for 30 years while keeping house and raising a family. My mother, Mary Jacob, was a gifted artist, who used her considerable talent to turn our house into a home, and she did it without fanfare or accolades, unless you count the Mother's Day cards I sent her over the years.
Neither of them were raised to be captains of industry, but I believe they made it possible for Ann and me to become the women we are today, cheering us on and offering love and support through good times and bad. They were, quite frankly, the wind beneath our wings. "She made me want to be a better woman," Ann says of her mother.
1. Pauline Poole as a young woman; 2. Poole with her daughters Lois and Ann; 3. Ann with her mother a few years ago; 4. my mom with me when I was just a baby; 5. and 50 years later in 1998
I lost my mother five years ago. Ann was in Australia with Redken when she got the call that her mother had "gone to heaven." As was their custom, they'd talked by phone the evening before. "She was my touchstone," says Ann, who found a scrap of paper in her mother's wallet after she died. In her own handwriting was her philosophy of life: "Live simply, love generously, care deeply, speak kindly and leave the rest to the Lord." It could have been my mother's credo, as well. This tribute will have to suffice for a Mother's Day card for both of them this year.