I love my Mom, but we are of two very different worlds and mindsets. Sometimes, I wonder how that’s possible, that I could be so different from a woman whose body I grew in and came out of.
Still, she has this amazing spirit and that is, she is absolutely confounded by me, but she tries, sometimes too hard to please me, to understand me. She tries too hard that she ends up making the simple difficult, but she tries, and no matter what, she does only want the best for me, she just thinks that her vision in her mind IS the best for me.
She has many of her own issues, but she has lived an amazing life. Sometimes, I wish she could see what she has, that it’s enough. I wish she would understand that counseling would enrich her life, not confirm that she’s crazy. I wish she could see the amazing love my Dad has for her and be willing to go to counseling with him, if for not other reason, just to please him, just to do something for him.
For those of you that may be wondering, she is still healing, but I know that this is the beginning of the end. I know that she doesn’t take care of herself, that she retreats into pill-fueled sleep when my Dad and her are arguing. I know the signs of Alzheimer’s / Dementia and I know that she is in decline. I know she has her quirks, but, I also know that she tries.
She just tries. She makes the attempt with me, more often than not, and I know there have been many, many times in which I have hurt her and broken her heart.
So, when you see me complaining about her, about how difficult things are, know that our relationship is a complicated one. I wish I had the kind of mother that baked the cookies and took care of me when I was home sick with asthma related issues, but I don’t. I have a mother who bucked stereotypes and took on a job that ” was a man’s”. She was brave and dedicated and hard working, even if she wasn’t maternal. She had strength and courage and no one ever told her she couldn’t because she was a woman. She proved them wrong when they did. She didn’t want to have to rely on a man to take care of her, because her first husband beat the living hell out of her routinely.
I am honoured that she passed that strength down to me.
She’s a good woman, and as my Dad says, “when she wants to be, she’s the kindest, most loving person in the world.”
…but we have our moments…
And next Saturday, Lexi and I will be driving up to see her in her “new” (full-time) home and taking care of whatever she needs. Her birthday is on Friday, but I cannot spend the night at my parent’s country home. I can’t breathe in it, which is compounded by her smoking. And though it is not my favourite place in the world, I am looking forward to spending the day with her… (and paying my respects to our familial pet cemetery .. something I’ve never seen.) And my mom is looking forward to spending time with her Granddogter. (She absolutely refuses to call Lexi a dog and tries always to call her, her Granddaughter. This is our compromise, so that Lexi can be her favourite Granddogter and my niece can be her favourite Granddaughter.)
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