herald

Sunday 24 September 2017

'She's taught me to never give up'

Kate Thompson is known as both an actress and an author (her latest book is The O'Hara Affair, published by Avon Harper Collins). Kate has one child, Clara, who is currently working in the Aquarium of Western Australia as a Dive Master for the programme 'Dive with Sharks'.

We talked to them about their mother-daughter relationship.

>kate "The three adjectives I'd use to describe Clara are intrepid, adventurous and generous. She's always been very adventurous; when she was a toddler and we'd go for walks, she'd always start heading off in the opposite direction and I'd have to catch her hand.

"One of the strongest memories I have of Clara is the look on her face when she learned to walk; it was a look of absolute excitement. She was going to master this thing and there'd be no stopping her.

"Clara has a great love of travel but it's not something that I share. I think it's from being dragged around camping in Connemara when I was younger -- I prefer my creature comforts!

"One of the most difficult things for a mother is to learn how to let your child go off into the world. I suffered from empty-nest syndrome when Clara went to study in Japan. Now that she is in Australia for a year, we keep in touch by Skype and it's wonderful to hear how she is getting on."

>Clara "My mum is brave, determined and full of kindness. The quality I most admire is her ability to keep a smile on her face no matter what, and to take everything with a pinch of salt.

"My mum has taught me to never give up on my dreams, and if I really want to do something, I can make it happen

"My biggest memory of my mum from my childhood is her telling me stories. Not just from books but from her own imagination as well. Night time would be my favourite part of the day because Mum would tell me wonderful stories.

"My relationship with my mum has changed as I have grown older. Instead of being my guide and carer, she has become my confidante and best friend. I can talk with my mum about anything, and I always know she will be there with advice and comfort, and maybe a few bossy words thrown in for good measure."

>Next week: Radio presenter Claire B and her mum Miriam

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