Natalie and Isabella Bruno. Photo courtesy of Natalie Bruno

Mother-daughter bond continues to blossom and grow

By 
  • March 18, 2019

Natalie and Isabella Bruno are two ladies that any woman would be lucky to have in their corner. This mother-daughter duo are best friends who have grown in faith together, and on March 22 they hope to help other mothers and daughters do the same.

Natalie and Isabella are guest speakers at the 2019 Calling All Girls conference for mothers and daughters in the Greater Toronto Area. The event takes place the night before the annual Dynamic Women of Faith conference, organized by the Catholic Moms’ Groups in the Archdiocese of Toronto. 

Isabella said, more than anything, she and her mother want to tell mothers and daughters that they should be able to have fun in their relationship. 

“We have to embrace our imperfections, not being too hard on each other but also not being too hard on yourself,” she said. “Especially for mothers, being an example to their daughters, if you’re constantly criticizing yourself, your daughter is going to end up doing the same thing.”

Isabella and Natalie want to tell women that the parent-child relationship is an important part of a child’s faith because it ultimately informs how the child will relate to the Heavenly Father. 

Isabella, 28, said she was always close to her mother. It’s hard to pinpoint a moment when their dynamic shifted from a parent-child relationship to a best-friend relationship. 

There was a time, however, growing up in Woodbridge, Ont., when Isabella felt a bit neglected. She liked to do things on her own so her mom’ was more focused on her younger brother, Roman.

“She was more independent so I think I spent more time trying to take care of him and make sure he was okay,” said Natalie. “I sort of took her for granted for a large part of her life because she was so strong and independent, and then as they grew older, I realized just because she was strong and independent, didn’t mean that she didn’t need me and my attention.”

Natalie comes from a long line of southern Italian women who aren’t afraid to tell it like it is. And in a way, Isabella constantly reminded her of how close Natalie and her late mother had been when she was growing up. 

Natalie had Isabella when she was 29 years old. Now 57, she is reminded of who she was when she was Isabella’s age. 

Isabella said they began to grow closer together around the time she was in university. She hated everything about school and she turned to her mom for consolation.

Together, they decided to turn to God and learn more about Him. 

“In trying to piece together what God wanted us to do and even what it means to be Christian, I feel like that brought us a lot closer together,” said Isabella. 

They began to read books by Fulton Sheen and listen to Gus Lloyd’s morning radio show about Catholic apologetics. Recently, they’ve started picking a patron saint for the year and delving into the saint’s writings and lives. 

Isabella said what she most cherishes about her relationship with her mother is that not only is she able to share all her problems, but she feels that Natalie can do the same with her. 

“When we started talking more seriously as I got older and my mom started confiding in me more, I just felt more valued and appreciated,” she said. 

“A lot of my friends sometimes talk as if their children are a burden to them,” Natalie added. “At this stage, they talk about ‘I can’t wait to get them out of the house,’ and I think that’s pretty sad... What we have is a little bit different and I talk to them about our relationship and they’re surprised.”

Isabella added that if parents don’t take the time to get to know their children as people, and not just as their child, tthey will become distant.

For information about the Calling All Girls conference and Dynamic Women of Faith, visit dynamicwomenfaith.com.


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Unlike many other news websites, The Catholic Register has never charged readers for access to the news and information on our site. We want to keep our award-winning journalism as widely available as possible. But we need your help.

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