Top Five Friday: On Screen Moms

In honor of Mother's Day coming up this Sunday, I've decided to blog about my favorite TV and movie moms:

1. Roseanne Conner from Roseanne

Whether it was at a plastics factory, behind the counter of a diner, or at home, Roseanne Conner worked hard to support her family. She got angry, could be a little bossy sometimes, and wasn't afraid to tell it like it was. Some may have just thought of her as a "big-boned, loud mouthed banshee," but I always appreciated Roseanne Conner because she represented what the real working class American mother was - not always perfect. The thing that resonated most with me about Roseanne is the importance she placed on ensuring that her children knew that they were loved. Though everyone in the Conner household may have not always got along, Roseanne made sure her kids and her family knew they were welcome in her home.

2. Lynette Scavo from Desperate Housewives

Lynette Scavo is tough. She's passionate and protective. She's headstrong, outspoken and realistic. But most importantly, Lynette cares about her family and wants to see her children lead healthy, successful lives. She's not afraid to admit that she would have loved to focus on her career, but that sacrifice only empowers her to do the very best she can at being a mother. She survived raising four kids, operating a pizza restaurant, a gunshot wound, a tornado and cancer. Though she does come off as (more than) a little controlling, I appreciate Lynette because she's always had her family's best interest at heart.

3. Mrs. Gump from Forrest Gump

"Mama always said, 'Life is like a box of chocolates, you never know what you're gonna get.'" Imparted through her son, Mrs. Gump's wisdom is as timeless as it is unforgettable. Forrest may have been simple minded, but that didn't stop his mother from loving him for all he's worth and providing him with countless amounts of encouragement and support. She stood up for his right to an equal education, taught him important life lessons like valuing oneself no matter what others think, and always welcomed him home with open arms.

4. Nancy Botwin from Weeds

She's pretty, but she's no where near perfect. Since her husband died after a heart attack leaving her to raise her two teenage sons on her own, suburban housewife, Nancy Botwin, has always had to make the best of a bad situation. Without a post secondary education and with very little to no work experience, she decides to join the lucrative but highly risky business of dealing pot to make money. This venture, though, often lands her in tight situations and trouble. Fiercely protective of her children, Nancy always has a plan - and though she sometimes loses sight of how carrying out that plan affects them, she always has her sons' best interest at heart.

5. Selma Jezkova from Dancer in the Dark

When asked why she gave birth to her son knowing that he may suffer from the same blinding affliction that she had, Selma Jezkova said, "I just wanted to hold a baby." Since seeing Dancer in the Dark for the first time, I've always remembered her for her truly inspiring self sacrificial love. Selma works day and night at a factory, trying to save up enough money for an operation for her son that will prevent him from losing his sight, and, when her trusted landlord, whose wife has an expensive taste, steals her savings, she's forced to make a decision that has serious consequences.

Make that top 6...

This last mom isn't a movie or television figure, but she's just as inspiring - if not more! I can't do a Mother's Day post without giving a shout out to my own! I feel as if she embodies the best qualities from each of the on screen moms I mentioned here - wise, encouraging, supportive, and loving. From working minimum wage jobs to going back to school to get a nursing degree, from raising four often times unruly kids to caring for the elderly, from providing me and my siblings with a safe home to helping and encouraging us as we began our lives on our own, I will always celebrate and appreciate all she has done. Happy Mother's Day!