Saturday, May 11, 2013

Happy Mother's Day

In my travels as an MP I meet literally hundreds of Newfoundland and Labrador men (yes, the vast majority are men) in airports or on planes flying to work all over the world, but mostly Alberta. 

They slog it out for two- or three-week rotations, and then beat it back home. 

Their lives are hard on their families, on the women and children left behind. 

I can relate. My father commuted to the far north for work on a string of radar bases known as the Distant Early Warning Line for almost 20 years. 

He worked away for six to nine months at a time, and then came home for six weeks. 

My mother held the family together when he was gone — from the banking to the baking, from the cleaning to the scolding. 

My father's sacrifice was incredible — to support his family he had to leave his family. 

But my mother's sacrifice was equally as brutal — to support her family she had to forfeit her husband. 

We moved to this house in Bay Roberts in the early 1980s after our home in Riverhead, Harbour Grace burnt to the ground. 

Mom handled that alone, too. 

Newfoundland and Labrador men are a rare breed, but only because of the women that stand beside them. 

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