PG - 29 Weeks 2 Days - More Blogging Therapy

Wow, was yesterday's writing ever therapeutic. But like most relationships, the one with my mom cannot just be boiled down to the few paragraphs I put down. That post was our issues. I really can't say though that I have a bad mom. There are so many things I love about her and the influence she had on my life, so I feel that I need to post this side of our relationship too. It's just that as my mother has gotten older - and BTW, she's not that old, she's only 17 years older than me, so that makes her 55? I don't pay attention to exact age, because I think it's just a number and that's one of the things my mother taught me when I was younger. A lot of my personality was developed by things I learned from my mom. Here's a comprehensive list
1. Go to college - have a career, be able to support yourself and don't rely on anyone else to support you. My mom was a child of the 60s and brought me up in the 70s with the whole women's lib thing. I've embraced it totally. I went to college and got a great degree because of her influence. So it was tough when I got to college not to feel her support, because I was just doing what she taught me to do. I love my work, I work really really hard (including some calls on weekends) but I make sure I balance it with parenting and being a wife. Remember the Anjali perfume commercials? I joke that that's me. Not to start a working mom/stay at home/work at home mom debate. This is just what I was raised to be. My mom got married at 16, had me at 17. She went back and got her GED and decided to go to nursing school when I was in 4th grade. When she graduated before I started 7th grade, I was so proud of her and her accomplishment. She did it to make our lives better financially and it was awesome.

2. Marry for love, not for money. Money can go away. My grandmother (her mom) used to always tell me, "It's as easy to fall in love with a rich man as a poor man." My response back was always "I'm going to college, get a career and I can marry any poor fool I want." I'm sure this influence came from my mom. Even though her and my dad divorced a few years ago, I always knew (and still know) that they love each other a lot. They just have a hard time living together, LOL. And yes, I married for love. I adore my husband more than words can say and I'm so glad I found him.

3. "Act like you know." - It was a saying someone she worked with had, and we loved this as our life's motto. Not that you need to fib your way through things, but that confidence is extremely important in life and you should be confident in what you do know and confident to ask the questions to keep knowing. People always say that I seem like such an upbeat positive person and it's mostly because I just always feel like not matter what the challenge, I can figure it out. My mom was always like this and I admire this in her.

4. Embrace diversity and tolerance for others. Very important considering I grew up in a town that didn't have any minorities in it until I moved and was in college. It is directly because of her influence that I have no issues with embracing diversity every day and valuing the differences of others. My mother used to tell me when I was growing up, "I don't care if you marry someone that is black, white or purple. As long as they love you and treat you well." It's a shame that when I was in college and got into a relationship that tested that statement that she didn't stand behind it anymore, but in the long run it didn't matter as we didn't get married, but it had nothing to do with his ethnic background. I actually blame his being Sagittarius, which is the same sign as my mother, go figure. I've found I can be best friends with a Sagittarius person, but they will never really "get me" and I can't live with them.

So the other thing I've been thinking about lately is things I would like my mother to understand about me that I don't think she does, but are extremely important to me. I'd love for her to celebrate these with me:

1. I'm a much stronger person than she thinks I am. I am sensitive to smells and am a little OCD about some things (closing cabinets that are left open, cold feet, etc.), but I have a high tolerance for pain and I can get through anything. Hence, the 21 hours of labor I went through with Phoebe with no pain meds or epidural, and getting through college on my own two feet, going through infertility treatments and sticking with it to get my objectives, being able to balance my daughter's commitments, my husband's traveling work schedule, running a home, and working full time.

2. I'm not the same person I was in college. Heck, I'm not the same person I was 5 years ago, maybe even a year ago. I keep changing and growing, which I value in myself. Mentioning what I was like when I was in high school or who I dated back then is extremely frustrating because I have moved on from there.

3. I have earned everything I have. Do not compare me to family relations that have possibly married for money, because I have worked very hard for my home and the financial stability I currently have (not that anyone is really that stable right now). We make trade offs just like everyone else does. Yes, I can sometimes buy designer pieces, but I still buy off the sale rack and we don't really go on extravant vacations, because we've spent the past several years focusing on my husband's MBA, building our new house and infertility treatments. I do meal plan and have "leftover surprise" for dinner weekly to keep expenses in check.

Comments

Martha said…
I celebrate these wonderful things about you, Heather and all the gifts your Mom has given you including strength.
I am sorry that your Mom is "stuck" on a person from your past, you're right, you've evolved so much. Who of us would ever the same after all you've experienced??
((Hugs))
Queenie. . . said…
I SO can identify with not being the person you were in h.s. or college, but having the parents remind you of it. My father swears that at 16, I once made a very offensive and prejudiced comment (I swear I didn't), and he repeats the story at the most inopportune, embarassing times. Even if he thought I made it--more than two decades have passed. It's time to move on! Sometimes our parents can't see us as anything more than little kids, and they don't get why we don't want to be treated like little kids. I hope everything with your mom smooths out soon.
Formerly Gracie said…
It's so funny. No matter how old we get, my family always seems to slip back into our "roles" from when we were all living under one roof.

Sometimes old habit are just hard to breaking or admitting that someone else has changed means that you've changed too... (Like my not needing my parents to take care of me anymore)

When my family bugs me, I have to remind myself of what I have going for me too and, as sad as it is, admit that maybe they're not the ones I can turn to when I need a little extra support or heck, a cheerful voice....

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