Mother’s Day – Good Riddance
Many thanks for your Mother’s Day blog! It’s comforting to know there are people out there who share my feeling about honoring mothers – automatically. When my sister posted a picture of our mother crocheting hats as her Facebook picture and wrote an absolutely lovely few lines in praise of our mother aka her making Strawberry short cake etc, and crocheting hats. Leaving out, I might add, our mother’s real worth as a stalwart and persevering person, She was brilliant , classy, and charming…. I felt an inconsolable sadness mixed with a bit of rage.
Mother’s Day is the most depressing day of the year. Now that it’s over, I can recover my equilibrium as a person who reconciles the myth of my mother as a lovable person to my sister verses my reality that our mother thought I was unlovable. It saddens me to realize that my sister’s mother was different from my mother, even though one in the same person. It’s of great importance to me to be on the same page as my sister. I love her so much! Our only separation from each other is that unlike me, my sister played her part well in our mother’s play starring our mother the Queen. For her participation, my sister was curried and favored by our mother. My dear sister fashioned her life in the exemplary service of both our mother and father (who suffered from Parkinson’s disease) and then later in the service of her own daughter – and in this case to good ends, because her daughter is so far happy and accomplished.
Our mother’s needs were not met by me, even though I tried valiantly to be the person for the part. I involved myself since the age of six in concern for our other sister who was profoundly handicapped by Cerebral Palsy and perhaps a genetic syndrome for which my mother blamed me, albeit indirectly. When it came time for a professional family portrait just before our sister’s death, I was not included even though I was a teenager and still living at home.
I had my own children, three of them. Our mother didn’t connect to them as her progeny. She was a grandmother only to my sister’s child. When our mother died the family house went to my sister as recognition of a mutual devotion..
But ironically, I was more our mother’s child. I also became narcissistic. I treated my own children the way our mother treated me in that I used them to play minor characters in my play starring me as the brilliant unlovable genius.
I have been in therapy, for my children’s sake and for mine, for many years to learn to function from my authentic self. It’s been difficult to find out where and who that is. And still at 77 years of age, Mother’s Day gets to me. My goal is to leave my progeny a legacy of my love and not my persona. May they not celebrate Mother’s Day but celebrate daily the genuine compassion in themselves and others.