A piece I did for last year's Traveling Door sale. Sometimes we don't realize until we are pushed that we can fly.
FYI - this is a rare sentimental post - rather unusual for me but sometimes blogging is an exercise in therapy. I guess this was my catharsis.
It is like asking, "When did it get dark?" I don't know when things began to change and I'm not sure the change is even complete, but somewhere along the way the robes that my mom and I have worn for years don't fit like they used to. Lately, it seems we have needed to exchange them. My mom is a person I have leaned on, whined to, and confided in. We have shared a great number of martinis, laughs and bits of gossip. In recent years, though, there has been a slow but steady shift in my psyche. I used to worry about not disappointing my mom or if I was feeling rebellious just hoping she wouldn't find out about what I had said or done. There is an honesty about getting older and now I realize that it wouldn't have mattered if she had found out about all of my falls along the way. She would have loved me in spite and maybe because of my weaknesses. I know that now because I am older, wiser and also a mom. I know that my children will stumble and make bad choices and I will be here to listen, console, and if asked, advise them. Now instead of worrying about pleasing her, I worry about being here for her. Now it is me wondering if she is eating right and wondering if it is my imagination or are her steps wearier? My mom is going through an especially difficult time in her life and although I know her circumstances are certainly not unique, this time it is my mom that is hurting and I realize that she needs me. I am reminded of Kelly Corrigan's Transcending Women and a post I did earlier about this book. If you haven't seen the video yet be sure and click on the link. My mom was my first girl friend and I guess I am lucky because even though we suffered some tumultuous times between my sixteenth and probably thirtieth year, I now consider my mom one of my best friends.
Recently, it has become my turn to be the listener, the counselor, and the open arms for my mom. I believe this is something rather unique to women. We are the caregivers and we cannot ignore or turn our backs on a soul that is hurting. Men are certainly not uncaring but they seem to be able to respond to someone's needs and then shift gears and move back into their own routines without skipping a beat. Sometimes I envy them that but there is also a bonding that goes so much deeper between women. So when we feel overwhelmed with the responsibilities and the feelings that everyone wants a piece of us maybe we should be reminded that the role we fill has been passed on for generations and that we are passing on the nurturing skills that are ingrained in us. It is a fluid event. We take, we give, we take. This is what it is to be human and a woman. I love all of the women in my life and I love you Mom.