Just when I thought the challenge would cut me some slack and be easy for more than a day, a resounding da f*ck????? gets expelled from my mouth and I stare at the screen with fingers hovering over the keyboard.
I have experienced many an emotional pain in my life, but sadly, none has been greater than that inflicted upon me from my own mother. I take absolutely NO pleasure in revealing this information; however, I’m an honest person and in order to complete this challenge, I need to expose some not so pleasant things in the process, be they about myself or others.
Given that I’m my mother’s only daughter, one would think that there would be sense of camaraderie between us; a shared bond; or something that mirrored a kinship, well, that simply wasn’t the case. Growing up, I found my relationship with my mother tempered on anger, bitterness, aggression, and a plethora of similar adjectives. She showed no keen interest in raising me to feel special, beautiful, smart, or even wanted. I have very few memories; if any of doing things with my mother as I did with my daughter. In fact, what I do recall is being pawned off to an elderly neighbour who was like a pseudo Grandmother to me or being sent off with one of her girlfriends, which I later came to realize was her way of trying to gather information about me. Fortunately, her friends did not betray my confidence, but I gave them very little to betray as self-preservation was always in full-effect with me.
My mother did not tell me I was pretty; a good student or athlete, and whatever I did by way of an accomplishment was somehow made about her. (pause) Truth be told, I’m really not enjoying writing this post and will most likely limit details as I see they’re not necessary to tell my story.
Suffice it to say, growing up with my mother was not an easy experience and it was laden with emotional, mental, and on occasion physical abuse. Children’s Services was actually called on my behalf as a result of a beating she’d inflicted. The words that came from her mouth in response to their call would make Joan Crawford in Mommy Dearest look like Joan Cleaver!
I wouldn’t say I was a hard child to raise, but I’m sure for her standards or reasoning, I wasn’t easy either. I suspect that a lot of her negative treatment toward me was borne of her feelings toward my father. I often felt the verbal wrath of her viciousness toward him as if I had anything to do with being born or who he was. Mothers can be so nasty and ugly in this vein as I came to learn and experience.
Mother’s attitude toward me has been manifested in so many hateful, ugly, and down right mean ways on so many occasions in my life that I’ve lost track. I’ve exacted the proverbial 70 x 70 acts of forgiveness the Bible speaks on where she’s concerned because I grew too wary to even bother to entertain the hows and whys of her behaviour toward me.
At this point in my life, we’re actually in a place where we can speak without all the bitterness, anger, and frustration. I resigned myself to forgiveness both toward her and inward for myself. I don’t carry what she’s done anymore and I’d still done plenty for her in spite of myself over the years. The one thing that hasn’t been resolved is how my daughter feels toward her grandmother and I’m saddened by that. They used to have a great relationship and my daughter spent many summers with her Grammy being spoiled and pampered. My daughter had unfortunately bore witness by sight, word, or deed to mother’s treatment of me over the years and when she came to a point where she could make decisions for herself, she did…She stopped speaking to her Grammy. It’s now been 4 years since they’ve last spoken and it’s up to them to have a relationship or not. I’ve made my peace with her and can interact with her without the drama as I previously stated. It wasn’t easy by any stretch of the imagination, but one that was necessary for me to heal and move on.
No child should have their mother be the person responsible for so much pain and heartache in their life, but it happens. I’m glad I broke the cycle and raised my daughter better than that!
Yea, I said it!