Being a Mother is a Mother…
Let me start this thing off by saying “Happy Mother’s day!” I hope that you all find trinkets and treasures among the hand made gifts and cards that you receive on this day. They are truly the best gifts ever.
Today my brow is furrowed.
My heart is a little heavy with worry this mother’s day.
First of all, I miss my baby. She is back in Kentucky, doing her own thing. I know that she would much rather be with me and I would much rather be there with her…but it is time to start thinning that cord, and I know it.
I am an only child. She is an only child. She is taller than I am and severely handicapped. It has become a physical impossibility for me to care for her in the ways that she needs care. It was killing me to do it…and it wasn’t good for her either.
I have seen adult handicapped children who live in their parents home until their parents are sick or they die….then the shock of going into a group home suddenly, almost causes them to die. It rips my heart out to see that happen. So, about ten years ago I decided that I wasn’t going to let that happen to my Megan. So when she was eligible, Megan went to the group home. It hurt, but I knew it had to be. While we were all still around to love her….to allow her to get comfortable and to allow other people the time to love her before something happened to any of us….well…to me anyway. It had to be weaning…instead of a cold turkey. Cold turkey didn’t work so well….the weaning has been okay. Well…it kicks my ass a lot….but it’s been okay for Megan. Well….it kicks her ass too sometimes, but most times it is okay….and she will be in a stable place when everyone is gone and she is alone.
When people used to ask me what my greatest fear was, I would always say, ” I fear that I will die before my child. What will she do without me? AND I fear that my child will die before me. What will I do without her?”
Well….part of that fear is taken care of. That is a good thing. I get a ton of judgement over it. People say that I coldly left her behind so that I could have a better life. People only love to see what they think. People love to judge and they love to talk scandal. So I say talk on bitches….if they could take a stroll in my flip flops, it might all feel a little differently to them.
What people don’t know is the gut, heart and soul wrenching introspection and thought and worry and crying that went on for months making that decision. Making the decision to go and save my own life so that I could be healthy and sane enough to make the right decisions for that girl was one of the toughest things I ever had to do…right behind watching her suffer in hospitals and seize for hours at a time. Being a mother is a mother….
This morning I spoke with my own mother, who is 500 miles away. She is having her own issues with being a mother. My 90 year old grandmother is living in my mother’s house. Grandma has Alzheimer’s. My mother is 73 and has some pretty big health issues of her own. My mother has 5 living brother’s and sisters, however, she does the brunt of the caretaking of Grandma. She has a sister who has taken her on Saturdays for the last couple of years…but recently she told my mother that she isn’t going to do that anymore, because she feels that it isn’t fair that she takes her every Saturday.
I will tell you that my mother is not an easy woman…but she doesn’t deserve the treatment that she is getting from her family.
I think Grandma needs to go into some assisted care facility. My mother says that she has made a promise that she will not break. I can respect that. I just hate to see my mother continue down a path of stress and self sacrifice while at least three of her other siblings give her a great deal of shit and little help. My mother is the eldest of the brood.
It makes me crazy…and also why I live several states away from them.
I tell my mom that she can’t take care of anyone until she takes care of herself first. I tell her that her relationship with herself is the most important relationship she has. She needs to foster and care for herself. It is the only way to be strong enough to be of any help to anyone else. She never wants to hear it and will end a phone call when I talk about it. So, I try to send it to her telepathically….:)
I pray that one small seed gets planted for her.
My grandmother was smart, strong and loving woman. My mother is too. I love them both more than I can ever say and it rips my heart apart to think of how they are now…struggling against one another all for the sake of not being selfish. My heart hurts for both of them. I am sure that my strong, quick thinking Grandma would have never allowed my mother to make such a promise if she had known all of this would take place. My grandmother was a giver and a hard worker…she was my inspiration for many years of overcoming adversity…and about being someone that no one ever expected you to be. She does deserve to be honored….and so do we all…as mother’s…as giver’s….as women.
So, I will tell you to make everyday Mother’s day in your heart. Honor yourself. Love yourself. Do good things for yourself. When you are happy and well taken care of, you feel like nurturing others….you WANT to take care of others…and you never feel obligated.
Just like they say on the planes….put on your oxygen mask first before you put on your neighbors….I know I say that all the time, but it is the truth, y’all…..you gotta be able to breathe.
Enjoy your macaroni necklaces…..I wore one for a couple of years…it was a delightful piece mounted on the curling ribbon setting. 🙂
Do your thing Momma’s…and don’t let your babies grow up to be cowboys 🙂