Ah, Mother's Day – you know the day your spouse is supposed to go out and get cards and gifts for you from the children who are too young to drive much less to really focus in on a day meant just for mom.
But, alas no spouse. Thankfully, my dear friend Cathy helped my thirteen year old select two very nice wine decor thingy's and place them in a colorful gift bag and deliver them to me. So, I did receive a gift. My son, on the other hand, gave me a gift of "behavior" – he promised it to be all good behavior for the next three weeks left of the school year, and he mowed the back yard. He did give me hugs and kisses (always better than a purchased gift any day of the week), and I loved them.
My lovely daughter also hugged and kissed and told me how much she loves me. I love physical expressions of love.
My mother, whom I did love but was never certain if she really loved me, was not demonstrative. She would not just walk up to me and grab me and hug me to pieces as I do with my two children. She never pulled me into her lap when I was thirteen and held me and rocked me and told me how wonderful I was.
My mom grew up in the Depression – a time when if your parents were able to give you food, clothing and shelter it was "good enough." They inadvertently did some damage to my generation. I never felt as though I deserved to be loved and I constantly sought it out by performing and always offering help or gifts or cheer to all around me. I was a clown; an artist; the person who went and got the Christmas tree (after my dad died); a baker; the dog washer; the support. And I never felt I was ever good enough, still.
My friend Nikki and I often talk about our parents. Both of hers are living. Both of mine are deceased. She and I have been in each other's life on some level for 39 years! I was fourteen when she was nineteen, but as the years passed, our age became meaningless. I have a theory – once you're over 30 age is irrelevant.
Nikki got mad a few Christmases ago – mad at MY mom. She actually slammed her fist on the table (ok, we'd had a little Crown & it was late on a Christmas day). She said my mother damaged me, and she was right. She also informed me that I had a right to be mad at my mom and to be angry. After all she'd watched me grow up in a way. She saw my struggle to make myself lovable. It resembled her own fight.
So on this Mother's Day (plus one day) I would like to tell all the women who have "mothered" anyone or anything that each of you is quite lovable, that each of you are a child of the universe and deserve the space you fill, and do not let anyone make you feel any differently. Happy Mother's Day.