Mothers are either glorified or blamed, the job description is almost impossible to live up to, daughters are often angry at their mother and don’t know their mother’s history before they came into the world. It’s hard for daughters to come to a place of compassion, without realizing their mother had a whole complicated life before they came into the world.
What happens without healthy dialog? Stories and diagnosis are often created.
My daughter and family certainly have a story and have diagnosed me. And there is no dialog. I’ve tried, but it seems their story and diagnosis of me is serving them somehow.
We weren’t taught how to have hard conversations, how to listen in order to understand.
This is some of what I gleaned from listening to this conversation with Harriet Lerner and Sheleana Aiyana
Navigating mother/daughter relationships with Harriet Lerner
I remain open to miracles, healthy dialog with a willingness to own up to my part and with compassionate listening from all parties involved.
Thanks Wendy for sharing this youtube.
And thanks as always to all who read this.
Sometimes, I fall asleep crying and wake up crying. I’ve come to accept that and move through it, knowing in another moment I won’t be.
I cry for missed opportunities, family gatherings, my grandchildren turning 6, hearing them call me Gaga, the comfort of family checking in on each other during a pandemic, sisters, nephews, daughter and grandchildren calling to wish me a happy 61st birthday, planning the next gathering, and laughing together.
For reasons, some of my own doing and some I’m not sure of, those opportunities have passed.
I do believe, if we all listened, really listened with the empathy to put ourselves in each other’s shoes, we could grow to understand and forgive. I believe there is a story to be told, one of love and redemption. Fear is erased, holds on control and the need to be right are loosened, and hearts are opened.
But for today, I’m off to Black Lives Matter Rally in Missoula. Black Lives Matter Rally
Showing up to show support, listen and learn.
Side note: the dolphin is running good. I took it to have oil changed at Lube It. The guys there loved it. I love it when whoever is working on it, loves it. Taking it into RV shop on Wednesday to have a few things taken care of. I love it and it needs so much work!
My writing group is writing in the form of list. One of our prompts today is:
Questions I wish I’d asked my departed ones but didn’t
Where were you raised?
How many siblings do you have?
Is that white uniform uncomfortable?
Tell me about your parents, about your childhood.
Who takes care of your daughter while you are taking care of me?
Where did you learn to cook all the delicious food you cook for my family?
How much do my parents pay you?
How much is the bus fare to get to our house?
Which church do you go to?
What’s it like to witness all that goes on in our household?
Can I come over to your house sometime?
Elizabeth, do you know I love you very much?
This picture came up as a memory today. Elizabeth has been at the forefront of my mind lately. She raised me from infancy until 6 years of age. We had the days to ourselves in the midst of a chaotic, dysfunctional family. I was the youngest of 4 and there were 7 years difference between me and the next sibling.
Once everyone was off to school and work, she put me on the kitchen counter, served me toast with honey and coffee with cream and sugar. (I’m drinking my coffee with cream and sugar as I write this) I was content as she went about cleaning the kitchen. I was her side kick all day. Life was peaceful and full of love during our hours together.
A friend of mine is doing ancestry.com. I asked her to look Elizabeth up. After no avail, I am going to start my own research on her background. She is who I am interested in. The woman who loved me, sacrificed time with her own daughter and gracefully put on a white uniform, got on the bus and arrived at our house to help make it appear beautiful on the inside and out.
I already know my grandfathers on both sides were corrupt. My maternal grandfather was director of war bonds under President Taft. My paternal grandfather became sheriff in the south during prohibition. He had a check on his desk the day he went into office from the bootleggers. No pride in that.
I’ll let you know what I find out.
This what I got today. Highly recommend cranking it up and dancing. Give ourselves one more chance. Give love one more chance.
Feeling good again after not feeling good for a few weeks. I was tired and sleeping a lot, got an upset stomach for a few days, headache, coughing. Doctor ordered a Covid test last Saturday. The results came back Tuesday as negative. A relief, but not convinced. After feeling good for a couple of days now, I know I had something. Could have been any virus really. Could have been a False negative.
I suppose mainly, I would want to know in order to protect those around me, the cashier at the grocery, the gas attendant, the friend I had a six feet apart lunch with outside in the yard. Meantime, keep washing your hands, keep your physical distance, but stay close in other ways.
Keep on loving.
Contemplative collage: Age of Innocence
For A and P
This blog started as a way to stay connected on my solo journey to Baja from Montana a few years ago. I pretty much left it alone after that. Here we are on our solo journeys. We can’t meet for coffee. The title of this blog came from a friend, Marc Moss, as we sat over coffee. My daughter had cut off all communication with me. I was grieving, still am just differently. Choosing joy in spite of grief. My nephew had invited me to come stay at his place in El Pescadero. Fuck it, why not. So I write to not feel totally alone.
I think maybe I’ll post a picture each day with a piece of writing to go along, or I’ll just write as a journal or share a contemplative collage from my daily ritual to stay sane. Or I’ll share a recommendation of what I’m watching on Netflix or the like. Who knows, none of us know much right now. But we still got love.
Best diversion yesterday: Lola called to share that as she was looking out her window she spotted, Sam Elliott walking down her street. There’s that!
Are we listening? Some are out of fear, some have welcomed the quiet, some are rebelling, keeping their doors open. Of course we are scared, have needed the quiet and want to argue that this isn’t happening, no not to me.
Those who want to believe they are in control are rattled, holding onto their believe system even harder than before. Some of us just want all to be forgiven and love even harder.