This can be a painful day for so many.
Some of us no longer have our mothers with us. Some didn’t have a safe, loving mother while growing up. Some don’t have kids, and some have lost a child. It seems there’s no escaping the images of grateful, adoring husbands and kids lavishing love on their beaming mother. blech Holidays like this often have a big ‘should’ stamped all over them, and we’re incessantly reminded through commercials, posters, and various forms of advertisement of how this day ‘should’ be.
But for so many of us, it’s not.
In my case, I’m married to a passive aggressive man who for some reason that’s no fault of his own (according to him), is entirely unable to plan for a day that honors me or is built around what would make me happy. He’s unable to do this every mother’s day, birthday, Christmas, anniversary etc. Somehow, he ends up crabby and disagreeable, and somehow it’s my fault.
You know what? That can be pretty depressing. In fact, it has been stinking depressing over the years, and it’s not exactly feeling peachy on this Mother’s day eve either. I’m trying so hard to detach, to accept, to proactively let go, let go, let go.
But I”m struggling. I’m sad. I feel tired and depressed and wonder if I’ll ever have what it takes to really change my life.
Meanwhile, it’s still Mother’s day tomorrow, and I just wish it was over and behind me. Every time a friend or acquaintance posts on facebook about their husband and kids having them go to another room to relax, or having them go out to coffee to leave the house so they can make preparations, I just feel like a small sharp object jabbed me and a little emotional blood leaked out.
This year, I decided to grab this holiday gig by the horns. I bought myself a 4 pack of flowers (they were in maybe five inch pots) from Costco for my Mother’s day gift. Why wait for nothing, or some stupid thing grabbed the ‘day of’ from a dollar store or Walmart? We were there together when I bought the flowers, and he said he’d plant them for me. This was many days ago, and today he said he was going to do it. I had the audacity to have added two miniature four packs of cosmos to the planting mix. Little bitty one inch pots.
First time in years that I’ve bought flowers to plant.
I was about to leave on a walk with our oldest son and two youngest daughters when he asked me again where I wanted the Costco flowers planted. I told him (again), and this time walked out to actually point and stand literally in the exact spots. He told me he’d plant the Costco flowers, but he was too tired to plant the cosmos. I basically ended up weeding the area for planting and helping through the whole process. I almost didn’t walk… but thanks to my kids patient support, I did! About three miles, and whew, I was dragging myself today. Can we skip the part where I was so tired and hungry I ate chips and hummus after the walk?
He did make a salad to share with me. That was nice.
Let me tell you what all he did for me before that for Mother’s day.
Four days ago, he bought a piece of gluten free cake for me to eat today (a piece he planned to share).
And… yeah… that’s it.
This morning he handed me a list that he’d written out for his day. Here it is verbatim:
Reading 30 min.
Dump 1.0 hour
Bird Cages 0.5 hrs
Water seedlings 0.3 hrs
Dust clean B.R. 1.5 hrs
Clean office windows 1.5 hours
Clean office – dust/vacuum 1.0 hr
Filing/misc 2 hours
He said, “I cleaned your bedroom.”
I asked, “Did you move out of it??”
I’ve asked in the past (in vain) for help with the windows on the other parts of the house. In fact, he knows that dirty windows make me feel kind of dreary and almost sad. It felt like a bit of a slap to clean the windows where he spends time, but not even clean the kitchen window by the sinks where I wash dishes every daggone day. (I plan to hire someone to help with windows if I have to now.)
So this year will be like every other year, a total bust. I know, I know… why would I expect anything different?
I don’t. But I’m still with him. And that’s a whole crazy can of worms.
I know it’s not rational, but it feels like there are all these great moms out there, and then there’s me, the screwed it up mom, the mom who can’t seem to shed the chains of dysfunction.
Forgive me for the dip of self-pity. I’m sure it will pass, but I just have never liked this holiday. Well, I guess I struggle with almost any holiday anymore.
I’m fighting for change, but tonight just feels so discouraging, like it’s sucking the heart out of me.
What I want to finally say is that I’ll be thinking of all of you tomorrow, and hoping that each and every one of you finds some bright, pleasant, comforting patch of serendipity that brings a smile. You deserve it, and I’ll be hoping it for you.