I know it’s Mother’s Day and this post just may be too much for some of you, but all in the same, I must write. I must be honest with my feelings. Writing heals my wounds.
If you met me in person, you’d be surprised with what you’d get. After reading my “stuff” you may have the impression that I am good with words. Truly though, I’m not. Not in the moment. Age and just plain day to day weariness has calmed my mouth down some, but for the most part I’m always saying the wrong thing. Today was no exception. I decided to share with the women around me that I received my mother’s ashes yesterday. I spoke about how I don’t want them in my house. How I wish I could put them somewhere else like the basement or out in the garage. These women had wonderful mothers and were slightly taken aback by my words. We joked some to make it light, but they could never relate. Never. I should’ve kept my feelings to myself.
I will not put her ashes anywhere but where they are for now, although the strong pull to not have them here digs away at me. I know it is not her in that box. I know it. I feel her presence all the same. I have always feared her presence. Feared what she would do next to embarrass me or hurt me.
It also feels very fraudulent to have had to go to her in the hospital, to make the decision to take her off life support, to make a few financial decisions for a woman who I hadn’t seen or spoken to in years. My sister on the other hand, spoke to her daily, has been too torn to handle any of it. She cannot bring herself to hear anything about it or want any things that were mom’s at this time. She’s handling it her way, she says. Um no, I’m handling it and she’s avoiding it. What gall, what nerve to ask all of this of me and then leave me with the ashes.
Some of my anger is masked pain. When I saw the box that had the words “cremated remains” on my dinning room table, something flipped inside of me. That, I’m ok feeling went out the window and I was left with the finality of it. As long as I was waiting on paperwork and signatures and phone calls, I was still in the process. There were moments while in this waiting game where I questioned what was truly going on. I kept thinking, What if this is an elaborate hoax? I know of course it can’t be and would then tell myself, nah. She had played so many mind games especially with her health, that I almost could reach to the hoax conclusion. Sad really.
I cried and cried a couple hours later. I don’t know why. I felt very silly for crying for someone who never took an effort to unconditionally love me. I think I cried because the little girl in me now knew it wasn’t a hoax and that my chances at having her for a mom are gone. Not one more chance available. We are no longer one phone call away from a heartfelt apology. I had always thought there would be a deathbed reconciliation where we could patch it up seconds before her death. I cried because once again, she ruined Mother’s Day. Man did she have a way of doing that.
Everything that I used to be was because of her absence. My insecurities. My obsessive need to be noticed and loved by men over and over. I’m a night owl who has had insomnia for as long as I can remember because of her. My IBS condition that I’ve dealt with since I was small is because of her. The worry and instability she caused me tore up my insides….and yet after all that and much more, I cried and cried for her.
Do you find it odd that I feel somewhat better just putting these words out there? Or maybe you’re offended that I’m being a bit of a downer on Mother’s Day? I alwayshad to stifle the mom situation in my blogging because I was afraid she’d read it and become offended or seek out some kind of revenge on me. So I write on and a bit more freely now that she can’t read it.
I know what my therapist would’ve told me about the ashes. She would suggest I give them to someone else to keep on hand until the memorial service. She would remind me that when I walk by that box I don’t just see a loving mom who nurtured me. She would remind me that this woman (my mom) was someone who caused me alot of pain. That my feelings of her here with me are validated because my flesh, my heart have always been trying to get away from her. Away from the pain she caused
She would also remind me to look to what is front of me. My children, my husband. My church family. So with that being said, I look to the future not to the past. Things that cannot be undone will just have to stay in the past. The chance to reconcile are gone and I’m going to be ok.