And Another Mother’s Day

Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, Secretary Day, Valentine’s Day for lovers, Husband appreciation day, Wife Appreciation Day. Why do we have these special days? Is it because we have forgotten to show appreciation on a daily base. We sure still say PLEASE and THANK YOU, so why do we feel it is not enough?

I am not a mother, nor did I have a mother -only a birth giver. So theoretically I know nothing about motherhood, but we had planned to have children and I thought long (and hard) about what kind of mother I wanted to be. Also, I was an observant watcher all my life.

Mother’s Day, when children rave about their own family members in flowery words and give cards with the most unusual descriptions. Deepest testimonies of love. Mothers for one day are “The best role model, the best friend, the greatest inspiration, and the most unconditional support.”

Optionally, quite often the roles are reversed, and mothers call their children “The greatest love of their life, the deepest fulfillment. Motherhood, the most natural thing, the only destiny, the most overwhelming happiness.”

The flood of emotions in honor, but in truth, there are just as many messed up, complicated, or lousy mother-child relationships. (Or parent-child relationships, but because of the above-mentioned reason, I take the mother as the basis for my post.)

Nobody talks about those things, and yet they have an enormous potential for suffering.
I write about it today –one has to, so why not me? 🙂

You are not responsible for your mother’s happiness

For some mothers, frustration, bad mood and stress are the rule rather than the exception. Perhaps they are in an unhappy partnership, have financial worries, suffer from depression, or do not really know where to go with themselves and their lives.
AND THAT’S NOT AS RARE AS YOU THINK.
If the resilience is low anyway due to the circumstances, then everything spontaneous, loud, unpredictable, wild, or exhausting is an additional stress factor for the mother.

And no matter how much she pulls herself together, most children have very fine antennae, and quickly find out what makes mom happy, and what additionally strains her. Accordingly, they adapt (often unconsciously) their behavior. They become quieter, or funnier, or make an enormous effort at school. They choose a hobby that mom likes, and help more in the household.
This pattern can continue into old age because you know what your mom likes, right?
Hasn’t she always wanted someone to study?
And aren’t her greatest wishes grandchildren?
And wouldn’t she be deeply disappointed if you didn’t show up at every family celebration?

And boing, you try (even at the age of 65) to make your mom happy, because you know, “If you stopped by more often, I wouldn’t be so lonely.”

The truth is, we are not responsible for our parents’ happiness or misfortune.
We are not responsible for whether our mom is in a good mood or bad mood.
We are not responsible for her being bitter because she wanted to make something of her life, but then she got you and missed all the chances.
We are not responsible for her secretly blaming you for staying in a toxic relationship so that you have a parental home (WTF, who wants to grow up in a toxic home?)

You are not responsible for your mother’s happiness.
It’s not your fault, not your thing, none of your business.

There is no greater burden on a child than the unlived life of a parent.

If you want to encourage, love, give, support, and practically help her, it is only because YOU WANT IT OF YOUR OWN FREE WILL AND OUT OF LOVE FOR HER, and not because she expects it from you.

What are you responsible for instead?
You are responsible for keeping your distance when every encounter and conversation with your mother pulls you down.
You are responsible for not attending a wedding party/communion/60th birthday/funeral in the first place (or leaving earlier without giving reasons if it becomes toxic) if you always need two days to recover emotionally afterward.
You are responsible for not allowing yourself to be manipulated, and for not having to listen to smug, hurtful, or disrespectful remarks -about yourself in general, your figure, your parenting style, your way of life, your style of clothing, your job choice in particular -by making clear announcements or consequently letting the contact be complete.

THAT is your responsibility.
Not whether mom is doing well.
And not whether you like her.
Whether you like her or not, nothing concerns you at all.

You are not responsible for the happiness of your children.

The above statement is CERTAINLY not a legitimation for a selfish lifestyle with children.

The truth is that having children is a fulfilling task, but not THE FULFILLMENT.
Having children is the closest thing to selflessness, but not THE LOVE.
Having children is really beautiful, but short-lived – because they move out, become independent and you may not see them for years.

If you have linked your identity with your motherhood, then it will be bad for you when the children are gone –from one day to the next your fulfillment, your love, and everything that is important to you is gone, and then?
What then?
Do you then live without fulfillment and without love in the abandoned nest?
That would be very undignified.

You can actually draw a lot of confirmation, love, and fulfillment from parenthood, and literally lose yourself in the emotions –socially absolutely accepted and highly praised. However, I think this child focus is totally unhealthy for everyone involved.

Don’t revolve around your child and don’t drive yourself crazy if something doesn’t work out (which happens often enough), but instead focus on living a happy life –this benefits everyone the most, including your children.
If the children are then gone, nothing changes for you at all –you are just as happy as before, only this time without children.
Being free of your own children is the most relaxed thing ever, and you can practice that before they move out completely, out of sight –out of mind. Set them free! They will come back and love you more for the freedom you gave them.

If the child is your absolute priority, your mood of the day will also depend on the child’s mood of the day, and you will always try to keep it positive. What can you do to make the mood good again? An ice cream? Cinema? Help with homework? More allowance? Funny jokes?
This is not only very changeable and exhausting, but on top of that, it is wrong, because then the child actually leads. In a parent-child relationship, however, the child should never lead, that is not his task at all!

You determine the course.
You give the direction, the child can follow.
Whether it is in a good or bad mood is not your problem.

Spoiler:
Your child will often do some nonsense in the future, make wrong decisions, be with people you disagree with, and sometimes be unhappy.
Ask yourself, this is not your fault.

Your parents are not to blame for your misfortune.

There are horrible homes, beatings instead of love, manipulation instead of attention. Abuse instead of support. Neglect instead of caring. The list of hellish torments is long.

Do you know what I believe?
I am convinced that people who play an important role and have a big task in life often experience the worst resistance very early on. The demon is not stupid, he knows who he is dealing with –and if he manages to harm the person already in childhood, then has an advantage.
The wounds are deep, the consequences for the personality devastating, a clear 1-0 victory of darkness.

I know that I am going to go on very thin ice with what I am going to write now because there are countless therapies, books, methods, and techniques on how to come to terms with the past. I have lived it, have read them, and came to my own conclusions.
If you deal with the suffering for years and decades and solidify the victim mentality.
Then you become the one whose mother was mentally ill, an alcoholic, a violent person, a drug addict, a loser, etc, pp.

My suggestion, on the other hand, is that we turn the whole thing into the exact opposite.
Bad enough what happened. It may be that your parents caused this.
So what? It’s your life!

You are not the victim of your mother/father – you are THE LOVE.
You are not the oppressed, abused, weak, small, incompetent, stupid, – you are THE LOVE AMBASSADOR.
From this position, you can first forgive your parent(s), which is the most important thing ever.

You can NOT skip this step or omit it altogether.

Step two is: Away with victimhood, victim thinking, and victim action.
You make a decision against the role of the victim, against the “My parents are to blame for me…”, against the “If the bad hadn’t happened back then, I would be somewhere else.”
No matter how loud the contrary feelings and thoughts scream and argue against it (and they will!)
Ignore it

No matter what terrible things happened
YOU are stronger.
No matter how it feels, no matter how long or bad it was, no matter what you’ve tried and it didn’t work out, no matter who told you what.
Love beats hate, beats suffering, heals wounds, erases trauma, and makes everything healthy, beautiful, radiant, and strong again.
Love and forgiveness, the absolutely superior sovereignty, your absolute trump card.
It’s not even a fight, but a smooth 1:1000000 victory for you.
Well, demon, and now?!

You are not the one whose mother had any problems and left them out on you – you are YOU.
Show the world why you are here (and believe me, it’s not to come to terms with your past).
Show the world how strong and beautiful you are.

And now, I might have upset a lot of mothers on Mother’s Day. Have again touched a subject that seems UNTOUCHABLE.

What can I say! It’s me! I am me! Not a victim!

As for Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, Secretary Day, Valentine’s Day for lovers, Husband appreciation day, Wife Appreciation Day, Grandparents Day, and all the other oh-so-special days.

Show your appreciation every day!

16 thoughts on “And Another Mother’s Day

  1. I told my two children, well in advance of the day, to “skip it” entirely. I have a good relationship with them, a healthy relationship with my own mother, and if we didn’t have what we have, the day itself would be artificial. I have entirely too many friends who experience pain and disappointment on Mother’s Day and for them, I’ve always cringed. You’ve described the pitfalls very well, Bridget!

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      • From personal experience, these are the things often shared only with a therapist. Many of us may believe that if we have these thoughts, and especially if we act accordingly, we are considered to be not normal.

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  2. Mother’s Day, like every other “special” day is a commercially made nonsence, created as a means of making money. On Mother’s Day I always feel for those who would have desperately loved to have children but, for whatever reason, were unable to do so.

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    • “Commercial nonsense” you got that right. There are so many that feel uncomfortable on this day. The abused and mistreated, the orphans, the ones who lost their mothers too young. A very long list. This happily ever after nonsense we try to sell as reality, has gotten too far.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. ‘If you want to encourage, love, give, support, and practically help her, it is only because YOU WANT IT OF YOUR OWN FREE WILL AND OUT OF LOVE FOR HER, and not because she expects it from you.’ Yes! Expectations and blaming others when they fail to meet them. Choose love and moving forward in your life.

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  4. A truely brutal truth indeed. This..from an unwanted child…grown by my own determination and God’s will. You were so blessed to have your grandmother. My maternal grandmother raised me from 1 year old to 5 years old..then my mother remarried and took me away from security and love. I was emotionally, physically, mentally abused..by both step father and birth mother..
    I too was told and shown how unwanted and worthless in their eyes I was..yet…here I am. I finally said enough in 2012..at 57 years old…and I set upon the adventure of healing…me….
    Indeed..we are made of strong stuff…we cut our teeth on survival…and came through the shedding of skin that was always too tight to truely live in.
    On the brighter side of healing..there is immense Faith…and deep forgiveness…and Truth that finally shines in the Light.

    May your day be Blessed and dressed in the grace of God …Namaste’

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Absolutely 100% truth. Love is the strongest weapon out there and every single one of us was given that weapon as soon as we were born. Love beats all. People do angry when they see you as someone who turns against a mother, but sometimes in order to move forward we have to make tough decisions. I have forgiven my mother and father, but that doesn’t mean I will continue for my mother to keep abusing me, even in my 50’s she would try if she could get to me. I had discovered in my 40’s that it was time to be happy. Took awhile, and it feels better to forgive as bitterness hardness our soul, but I can not continue to allow anyone to abuse me and that includes my own mother. What happened in the past happened and now the future belongs to me and I choose to live it in peace.

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    • Forgiveness is not always easy achieved but a big part of the healing process. Everybody has a story and while it doesn’t excuse everything it often explains a lot.

      I found happiness very early in life. The ghosts of the past only linger if we invite them.

      Liked by 1 person

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