17) Write a letter to a family member
Monday brought the blues my way, and I don’t much feel like thinking about anyone or anything, so I am pulling out of the archives to answer number 17.
It is a post I wrote to my children for Mother’s Day a few years ago in protest of the notion that motherhood is a sacrifice of some kind, and that I should be venerated for the constant delight and thankfulness having children has produced in my life.
It is a bit stale, and I can happily say that I have managed to break free, but the sentiment is still alive and well within, and is a happy thought to hold on to as I wait for the doldrums to pass, as they always do.
The Best of Me
Sacrifice, I don’t think so. I would be so much less without the adventures we have had. I want you kids to know this, really know this, internalize it, sear it into your psyche, deep. Got it? Good.
You need to know I delight in you. It has been the greatest gift that you could ever give me these friendships we have embarked upon as you have matured into adults. I not only love you all deeply, but I like you, respect you, admire your integrity and wit. Sigh…I could not have asked for anything more than this as your mother.
Think of it this way, do you feel like you are sacrificing to be around me lately, or are you just being patient and loving, helping me through this period of angst I am amidst. Really it could be likened to your growing years, with all my moaning and groaning, and my occasional roaring, protesting life, and how it just never gets any easier.
But this has nothing to do with being a mother. I think it must be that fairytale we buy into, where somehow, sometime, we will be all grown up, and everything will just fall into place. All those foibles and gosh darn peccadilloes will resolve themselves and we will have arrived. Well I am sorry to tell you kids that’s just not so.
Oh sure you get better at mitigating, but one day you reach the tipping point, that nebulous moment when a strand of your tightly woven togetherness falters, weakened by age and use, and you begin the slow laborious rebirth of starting over, the learning how to be old before it’s too late. It is so disappointing, and refreshing, to realize you never do get to grow up, instead, if you are very lucky, you break free.
But I am not alone, I have help. Someone to laugh with me as I falter and struggle with this process of discovering a new adventure now that I only have myself to take care and no excuses.
Besides through the years I have learned so much from all of you that I am way ahead of the curve. Much better off than before I had you, and was trying to learn how to be a young adult all by myself
So please, please, please never isolate and smother me with the cloak of sacrifice. Instead let’s continue to give of ourselves, to each other, always and forever, and never forget, you give me the best of me, I would be so much less without you.
much love mom