Different times, different circumstances but the same title: ‘Mom’
Appeal Staff Writer
Sitting with four generations of Tate women, two things quickly become clear: There are a lot of similarities between these mothers and daughters, and there is no shortage of laughter.
Starting with 85-year-old Ann, the Tates have grown up here and remained in Carson City to raise their own children.
Ann had six children starting in 1941, a boy who died at age 2 followed by four girls and then her youngest son.
“I had to use an iron hand on them sometimes, but they were pretty good kids. They gave me all the love I could ever hope for,” Ann said.
Ann’s oldest daughter, Carolyn, became a mother in 1968. She has two daughters.
“Being a mom changed from when my mom had us because she stayed home, and I worked. I was a single mother. I only got to stay home for a year when my kids were little,” said Carolyn, 63.
Both Carolyn and Ann said they have seen their relationship change in recent years.
“She thinks she’s smarter than me now,” Ann said.
Carolyn added, “I think I’m her mother now. The roles have reversed.”
The ladies also admit they can see a lot of themselves in each other, especially when it comes to their personalities.
“I think we both have the same sense of humor, my mom has a really good sense of humor. We both have that feistiness in our personality,” Carolyn said.
While Carolyn’s daughter Suzie, 35, has come to appreciate her mom’s determination, that wasn’t always the case, especially when it came to bed time. Carolyn said she used to make her kids go to bed at 7 p.m.
“That was every night, even in the summer. It was still light outside,” Suzie recalled. “We could hear other kids playing, and here we were in bed.”
Suzie had her first of two children in 1996, and said having kids now is easier than for her mom and grandmother.
“There was a huge difference between grandma and mom, but not a whole lot between my mom and I,” Suzie said. “But, it’s easier for me to be independent and successful than it was for my mom.”
All three generations of mothers said they drew on their own childhood experiences to guide them in how they raised their own children.
“My mom had a lot of kindness.” Ann said. “She was very loving and had a strong belief in the church. She was so good, there are too many to pick her best quality.”
Suzie said, “I knew I was loved all the time. It was clear that us being safe and being loved was all that mattered.”
As the newest generation, 10-year-old Lexi said she has fond memories of all three of her mother figures.
“My mom has the best style, and she’s a good cook,” Lexi said. “(Carolyn) takes me to a lot of plays and we have tea parties.”
Lexi said she hopes to use what her elders have taught her some day when she has children of her own.
If she gets her way, it will be two daughters.
• Contact reporter Jarid Shipley at firstname.lastname@example.org or 881-1217.
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