Amy Bowers, Director of Human Resources and Legal Affairs for BWI Companies, Inc., says that her biggest advice for moms raising daughters is to model the kind of woman you hope she becomes. This is something that Amy practices daily with her own daughter, Madison Bowers, a student at Texas A&M University – College Station. “If you want your daughter to care for others, then you should care for others. If you want her to be giving of her time, then give of your time. If you want her to be strong, independent, driven, and hardworking, then do the same. If you want her to be a loving wife and mother, set the example and show her the way,” Amy says. “If you want her to find joy in little things, do the same. And, if you want her to have a sense of humor, don’t forget to laugh at yourself.”
It is evident that Amy has accomplished her goal because Madison uses words like “compassionate,” “humble,” “understanding,” and “patient” to describe the example her mom has set. “My mom is generous and always has a servant’s heart for those around her. She is the most genuine woman I’ve ever met, and it is so easy to feel her love through it. She is witty and lights up any room she walks into, and at the end of the day, she is my biggest support, closest friend, and someone I can’t imagine living without,” Madison says. “Words will never be able to encompass the good my mom possesses fully, but take it from me, she’s the best woman you’ll ever meet.”
Growing up, Madison says she was a quirky kid with some odd habits, but her mom always embraced her bold personality in a nurturing and patient way. “There are two traits that defined Madison’s personality as a child. First, she had a quirky sense of humor, and second, she was willing to do the work in pursuit of those things she most wanted. As an example of her sense of humor, at sixteen, she announced that she had paid the required $10 and had become an ordained minister of some internet-based organization. Thereafter, she immediately announced that her services were now available. So far, she’s had no takers,” Amy says. “As for that second trait, her willingness to work hard in the pursuit of a goal is the trait that defines her most. She sets lofty goals for herself: she wanted ‘State Perfect’ at Bible Drill, she wanted to compete at the State Science Fair, she wanted to be Captain of the Texas HighSteppers, she wanted to be Top 10 in her graduating class, and on and on, all of which she completed. While my encouragement was always ‘Do your best,’ she was relentless, driven, and never shied away from doing the work required.”
While Madison has grown and matured, Amy says that she is still quirky, funny, driven, and hardworking. For example, Madison is pursuing a degree from Texas A&M in Industrial Distribution Engineering with a minor in Business Administration. Too few women choose careers that require rigorous science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM-based) education, and Madison often finds that she is one of very few, if any other, women in the class. “I have listened to Madison share her struggles, witnessed her self-doubt, and heard about the countless hours of studying she dedicates to her advanced math and sciences coursework. Though she feels beatdown at times, she continues to push through and finds humor along the way,” Amy says. “She recently sent me a message while in her electricity and magnetism physics class that read, ‘Once again the hottest girl in class. Also, the only girl in class. Slay.’”
Madison says that Amy is the one who taught her not to give up when things didn’t go her way. “My mom has taught me to fight for everything I want and not take no for an answer. She is the strongest woman I’ve ever met and has faced things I couldn’t fathom. However, she continually pushes and pushes and always comes out on top. She is the reason I haven’t given up on my major, and trust me, I’ve thought about it frequently,” Madison says. “She is a role model and has set such a high standard for what I hope to be in the future.”
When Madison thinks about Amy’s determination, she thinks of how Amy decided to go to law school at age 40. Amy graduated with her Juris Doctorate in January of 2020. “I watched her work tirelessly for three and a half years while working a full-time job, coming to all of my performances, and being a full-time mother. I saw the highs and lows and everything in between. Watching her graduation and seeing her being handed a diploma was incredible. Words can’t begin to describe the feelings of joy, relief, and sense of pride I felt at that moment,” Madison says. “Watching her graduate was my favorite memory, but hugging her after has to be a close second. I couldn’t help but cry from the joy I felt for her, and it will be a sweet moment I will cherish forever. I am so proud of my mom for accomplishing her goals every day, despite every situation that seemed to be against her. She is an inspiration.”
As far as the future is concerned, Madison and Amy are just excited to make more memories. Madison says that she looks forward to the day her mom sees her graduate from college and have a family, but in the meantime, both mother and daughter want to enjoy the present. “I am just really excited each time we are together, even when that means we are simply playing a game of Uno and eating dinner out. Lucky for me, the weeks ahead include Parents Weekend at A&M, a mother/daughter brunch, a lakeside weekend getaway, and a cruise at the end of her semester,” Amy says.
Amy hopes that Madison knows how proud Amy is of all that she has accomplished and the woman she has become. She is proud of Madison’s educational accomplishments, friendships, strong moral compass, and determination in the face of adversity. “I am proud that she has remained true to herself and that she has not tried to be someone who she’s not,” Amy says. “I hope that she sees that she is enough. She has been beautifully and wonderfully made, lacking nothing.”
Questions for Mom, Amy Bowers:
1. How did you choose your daughter’s name?
My husband, Doug Bowers, had a special fondness for his grandfather James Edward (“J.E.”) McGuire and greatly enjoyed all the time he spent with him in Shreveport, Louisiana. The service station that J.E. owned, and where Doug has so many wonderful memories, is located in the Madison Park area of Shreveport. While we did not want to name our daughter James or Edward, we wanted to associate our daughter’s name with Doug’s grandfather, a man known for his kindness, humor, and dedication. Thus, we arrived at Madison McGuire Bowers. We have called her “Mikki” from birth, as every McGuire in Doug’s family has historically been nicknamed Mickey.
2. What is one of your favorite memories of your daughter?
She was in the first grade at Morriss Elementary. Every six weeks, the campus awarded a character trait award to students who exemplified that quality. Madison was so sure that she was going to receive the next award. She very boldly and confidently announced to Doug and me that she was “totally going to win the humility award.”
3. What is your favorite thing about your daughter?
I love Madison’s sense of humor and the smiles and laughter that naturally follow. She always has a joke at the ready, and she loves opossums and raccoon memes. She’s a willing participant and often the visionary behind the family’s annual Christmas card photo (known for its hilarity and shenanigans). The Joe Exotic-themed card was all her doing. She will pull a practical joke, and she’s a fantastic storyteller. She is the go-to at her sorority house for unusual props. For example, if you need a bald cap, she’ll lend you hers. Also, I really love her hugs. They are the best.
Questions for Daughter, Madison Bowers:
1. What is one thing that you see in your mother that you wish she could see in herself?
I wish my mom could see the impact she has on the people in her life. My mom shows endless compassion to the people around her and makes people feel genuinely valued. However, I know at times she doubts herself in this area. I wish she could see herself from my point of view and see how she makes people feel and the impact she has on those around her and the community. She is just incredible, and I wish she knew the magnitude of how great she is.
2. How would you describe your mom’s personality?
My mom is one of the most consistent people I’ve ever met. There hasn’t been a change in her personality since I was a kid. She is still the strong, patient, motivated, kind woman I knew growing up. However, as I have gotten older, I appreciate her personality so much more. Not many moms I’ve met will go rock climbing with their teenage daughter, stay up way too late playing card games, and send memes to each other on a daily basis. Yes, her personality has not changed, but that shows how she remains true to herself. She doesn’t change for anyone and is uniquely her.
3. What advice do you have for daughters about navigating a good mother/daughter relationship?
I think being open and honest with each other is the most important thing to maintaining a solid relationship. I tell my mom everything: the good, the bad, the embarrassing, and everything in between. By being open, she understands how I think and can love and support me better from this. It also allows us to have a friendship through this. Yes, she’s my mom, but she also understands me more than most people ever will. I know she is someone I can laugh with like a friend, but someone who will support me through the hardest seasons of life. I am so thankful for the relationship we have and how it continues to grow.