Today’s Grief

I realize that I have not blogged in a very long time.  I realize that you don’t really want my raw thoughts and grief… you would rather have knit/crochet patterns… but today I just have some thoughts to get off my chest/head.  Sorry.

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Today, while in the midst of the daily discussion/argument with my mother about who I am…   (Seriously, I wouldn’t argue with her if she NEVER knew who I was, it is only part of the time that she is confused about that.)

… today it hit me… like a ton of bricks.   Hurts even to start thinking about it again now.

 

All of my life I have tried to gain her approval.  This is something that all children do.  They want their parents to approve of what they do, they want their parents to be proud of them.  I have been trying for 50+ years to  make her proud of me.

 

Since the day I was born and was not supposed to be a girl, in fact I didn’t have a name for a couple days.  Since the day my brother was born and then the next brother… and the story we always heard how the first brother was the only wanted/planned for child… she may have been joking about it… but it still stings.  There is still a kernel of truth there.  She prefers boys…

 

Despite the fact that I was the “good” child and did everything I could to be the best I could be.  To follow the rules.  To behave appropriately.  I never felt it was enough.  I never felt that I made her proud.

 

Sure, there have been moments when she seemed pleased with what I had done.  Or with something my family was doing.  There may have even been times that she told others that she was proud of me (I don’t know that for a fact, though).   She never told me, nor with any regularity acted like it.

 

My mother is/was a very private person.  Emotions were not ever shared or expressed.  This is even worse now with her brain damage.  I can’t say that I ever saw her cry… not even when Dad died.  I can clearly recall her yelling at me and slapping my face many times during the teen years.  The only time I can recall her hugging me was when she was told to by a pastor friend when my #2 daughter was being loaded into a life-flight helicopter.   Touching and sharing of feelings is not something that she does.  It is not something that I do well either.  That is how I was raised, how was I to learn anything different?

 

Today, as I sat and looked at her as we ate supper on her porch… I realized that I so desperately want her approval.  I want her to be proud of me.  I want her to know who I am and love me.  I want her to thank me for taking care of her.  I want her to tell me that I am doing good.  I want her say that my daughters are wonderful young women.  I want her …

 

However, that will never happen now.  I no longer have a mother.  I have an elderly person that I take care of that happened to provide 1/2 of my DNA.    I wish that didn’t hurt so much.

 

Maybe this is why I always feel like I am still 12 inside.  I am desperate for someone to tell me that they are proud of me.

 

Yes… some of you will say that you are proud of me.  Yes… some of you will tell me that she is proud of me, she just cannot express it to me.  Sorry… as well meaning as those words are meant to be, they will NOT be helpful to me (so please refrain from doing so).

I am not sharing this to get “warm fuzzies” from everyone, I’m sharing this … because I just need to get it out.  I need for people to realize that I am real.  That life is terrible.  That some days I cannot cope.  That I really want my mommy to be proud of me and that will never happen.

 

I know that I do not verbally tell my daughters this same thing.  I have however shared it in written form either here or on Facebook.  Like my mother, I’m not good with verbally sharing things emotionally.  I am however, trying to be better at not hiding my emotions.

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Daughter #1 – She makes me so very, very proud!  She is a responsible young adult, holding down a job as a nanny (and a super-duper wonderful one!!).  She is paying off her car and paying on her college loans.  She is my right hand woman in taking care of Grandma.  Without her, I don’t know what I would do.  She is so very talented… just like me… she can paint a wall, spackle the holes, sand the baseboards, build a fire, knit an afghan, cook a cheesecake, design a birthday cake, create crafts for young children, and so many more things!  Abigail is wonderful!  She is my favorite almost 24 year old daughter!

 

Daughter #2 – She makes me very proud!  She is becoming a responsible adult as well.  She is finishing up college and has an internship lined up for summer that will hopefully roll into a job after she graduates next year.  She has figured out her own housing for summer and is working on figuring out what she is doing next year at school.  She is a master camper/hiker.  She can out fire build an eagle scout, and make delicious campfire meals.  Elizabeth is wonderful!  She is my favorite 21 year old daughter!

 

Daughter #3 – She makes me very proud!  She is finishing up High School and has a plan in place for summer and college next year.  She has taken ownership of her Selective Mutism and is working through that.  She has filled out every scholarship application she possibly can in hopes of getting lots of $$ for college.  She has been a great help in getting the house organized and holding down the fort here while I am at Grandma’s.    Lydia is wonderful!  She is my favorite 18 year old daughter!

 

Daughter #4 – She makes me proud!  She is a very responsible teenager.  Still finding her way and making her mark on high school.  She is a faithful friend.  She is helpful to me when asked.  She is kind to Grandma and a joy to have around helping there.  She certainly is the perfect daughter to round out the family.  Esther is wonderful!  She is my favorite 15 year old daughter!

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Please, girls, know how much I love you and how proud you make me!