"A mother's love for the child of her body differs essentially from all other affections, and burns with so clear and steady a flame that it appears like the one unchangeable thing in this earthly mutable life, so that when she is no longer present it is still a light to our steps and a consolation.
It came to me as a great surprise a few years ago to have my secret and most cherished feelings about my own mother expressed to me as I had never heard them expressed before by a friend who, albeit still young, has made himself a name in the world, one who had never known a mother, she having died during his infancy. He lamented that it had been so, not only on account of the motherless childhood and boyhood he had known, but chiefly because in after life it was borne in on him
that he had been deprived of something infinitely precious which others have--the enduring and sustaining memory of a love which is unlike any other love known to mortals, and is almost a sense and prescience of immortality."
Far Away and Long Ago: A History of My Early Life, WH Hudson (1918)