I want to write it down because every year I wonder how I felt the year before and I how I made it through. I can’t remember happy mother’s days. Well, when Christopher was in utero his cousin was born. How could I have been unhappy that day? I remember being excited for my own baby to be born. The next Mother’s day rolled around when Christopher was 11 months old. We went to the beach. Kelly took pictures of us. Christopher wouldn’t touch the sand. Other than that, they are all sad memories.
I still have the gift I made for my mom on her last Mother’s Day. I remember getting money from my dad. My best friend and I went to the local department store to buy the supplies. I remember feeling so proud that I had made her a gift. It’s a sky blue piece of felt with a face embroidered on it. A smiley face. It has googly eyes. I also wrote, “I love you mom” in the best embroidery I could manage. I didn’t even know what embroidery was. I attached a fake rose to it. I can’t remember her reaction. I wish I did. I wish I remembered everything, but my memories of her are vague and scattered. Most of the memories are sad or bad ones. I remember the spankings. I was so naughty. SO. VERY. NAUGHTY. You know what I said once? I said to my parents, “Everywhere we go people say I’m a little angel, but at home I’m a little devil.” Don’t tell me my RAD kids don’t know what they’re doing. I knew. I didn’t know why. I remember being under 4 and wanting my mom to hurt. I would call her “grandma” instead of mom. I don’t know if that really hurt her because the moment it came out I felt so much shame that I’d run and hide between the davenport and radio cabinet. I loved watching Portland wrestling with her late Saturday nights. I watched it years after she died. It was our thing. Dad didn’t watch with us.
I thought that when I became a mom that the pain would lessen. In some ways it did. I wanted to be honored in that way that we honored my mom. It never happened. I had to make my own Mother’s day fun and make sure that it was fun for my ex. In fact, that’s all that ever mattered. If it made him happy and we didn’t fight, then it was a good day. I honored him on his day because that’s what we do in our family. Even this morning I was wondering if I could afford to give him a gift from our children.
Ireland made me a gift at school. It’s a coupon book. She wrote the most darling things. She loves me. A lot. Our hearts are knit together and it’s easy. It hurts that it’s not easy with my other 3 and makes me dread the moment it gets hard with her.
I think I suck at being a mom. There. It’s out there now.
I wonder why my teen can’t share his heart with me anymore. I wonder why I get scared and can’t talk about the things he wants to talk about. Why is there a big disconnect between who I am and who I want to be? Is that gap closing? My heart aches when I hear about all the successful and smart children of my friends when I have kids who struggle so much. Ireland is the only one that finds academics easy. I graduated from highschool and I wonder if any of them will. I have so much I want a talk about concerning my kids, but I really want to talk to a man who loves them and cares for their future. I want input, advice, and support. Dang it.
I should be more thankful. Can I be thankful AND sad, please?
A few years after my mom died I started giving my dad Mother’s Day cards. He deserved it. I was thankful for him. I was SO loved by him. I knew that. Sometimes I didn’t know it. For years I thought he blamed me for my mom dying. I certainly did. I kept thinking that if they had never adopted me that she would’ve lived longer. That might actually be true. Parenting kids like me is really hard. I parent kids like me and sometimes I think of how nice it would be to not wake up one morning. Nice for me, that is.
Why am I even complaining? There are people who have never known love or had good parents. Though, I’m not sure at the quality of parenting when it concerns my mom. She was broken and I think she passed that deep brokenness on to her children. One of her children was my birth mom and she passed it on to me. Can I stop it? Have I stopped it?
Back to the coupons Ireland gave me. They are so precious. I will keep them forever.
“Mom, this certificate entitles you to a massage.”
“Mom, anytime you need an extra hand I will gladly, watch a movie with you”
“In honor of Mother’s day I promise not to buge you.” (She crossed out the ‘e’ at the end of buge.)
“This certificate entitles you to have tea with me.”
“This coupon is good for you to use it when you have a hard time.”
“In honor of Mother’s Day I promise to do anything you tell me to do.”
“This coupon is good for no fighting with my bother and sister.” (She has 2 bothers, did she choose just one to not fight with?
“Mom you are nice to me and funny and beautiful.”
Sage has one for me, too, but he left it at school. I forgot that today was Mother’s Day so I let him go stay with his grandma. Once I realized that I didn’t want to disappoint either of them by making him stay home. I didn’t have plans until late last night, anyway.
Well, here’s the end of my Mother’s day post so that in a year I can look back and remember what it was like.
Here’s a pic of me with my parents at the beach. I was 3 1/2 and oh-so-cute. I really do look at my pictures and think, “Oh my gosh that little girl is so cute!”
I wrote about my mom a few years ago. I just found that post. You can read it here: My mom. It has now been 28 years since she’s been gone.