my mommy and me

The moment a child is born, the mother is also born.  She never existed before.  A mother is something absolutely new.  ~Rajneesh

When my mother brought me into the world, it was almost the end of her life. When I was born some things went horribly wrong and if it wasn’t for the mighty hand of God, I would have never known her. Thankfully, the doctor who would help save her life came back to the hospital that evening because he had forgotten something, as was there at just the right time to help get things okay with my mom.

Of course, I don’t remember this but i’ve heard stories. I don’t remember those early years much, but i do remember stories read by my mom, days where she would have us melt crayons onto paper on the electric griddle and how she’d let us play for hours out in the dirt and never once complained (that i remember).

I was eight when we left Alaska, and though I have memories of being there and things done together it isn’t until we settled in Ontario that my memories are a bit more developed. It wasn’t until we lived in Ontario that i remember my mom have severe mood swings, and us beginning to live in a means of ‘walking on egg shells’ around her. To this day, even though she has gotten help and things have settled down, it is one of my greatest fears to make her upset from the years that I dealt with her reactions)

It turns out that one of the reasons we returned to work in the home office was that my mom was having some severe emotional issues, and while they did need my dad to help out in the office here, they also were helping my mom to find a good counselor and figure out what was going on and help her. i knew that we were going to the doctor when we went on trips to Toronto…they lasted a couple hours (or what seemed like that) and we would sit in the waiting room reading books or playing with toys we brought along. And we’d go home again, and then return some time after for it to all happen again. of course being young, i didn’t know that all adults didn’t go to the doctor as much as we did…i would learn that later in life.

i still remember the night when my brother and I were hanging out in his room and my mom came in and sat down with us and explained that she had been diagnosis with severe depression and apologized for the way in which she had been all over the place with us and hoped that not that things had been figured out she’d be able to be more consistent with us.

And while she still does have ups and downs, we have been able to judge them a little better then in the past, and she had a wonderful Psychiatrist, that I also go to, who has helped with alot of things.

around the five years between my brother and my birth, she ended up having a part of her body attacking itself. It was something that could be remedied by removing it…but she wouldn’t be able to take painkillers any longer because her body couldn’t process it. (i think its her spleen?) Anyway, upon coming to Canada she started to have severe migraine headaches that were triggered by her tense jaw and depression. When she developed these migraines, she was unable to take anything for them…and simply wait in the dark, with a bit of quiet music, lots of sleep and some tea to get her through it. There were weeks where we would see her out of her bed for only a day each week. We never knew what would set her off, and she could never really commit to much of anything with us, because she never knew when a migraine would hit.

it wasnt’ until later in my life, after our psychiatrist had figured out how to get her body working correctly (alot of things were imbalanced in her body) that she began to be able to be present again with us. At first she was sick only once a week, instead of the complete opposite. and over the years these days of severe sickness have been much more rare and few.

While my mother was ill and unable to go out much, I spent alot of time with my father and brother. While i love them dearly, growing up I didn’t have much in common with them. And when we’d go out they would often sit in the front seat going on about things they had in common and when I’d pipe up they would often ignore me. I’m not sure this was on purpose, but it just seemed to me that they thought i didn’t have much to say.

My dad and I still don’t really understand each other, but we love each other and try to fight through to a compromise. My brother and I have a much better relationship now, and i’m thankful that God has worked that out in our lives.

However, since my mother wasn’t around for those years (before things were figured out for her medically) I felt/feel abandoned at times. and that’s a hard conversation for us to have, because she knows how I feel and she hates it. At the same time she knows that there is nothing she can do or could have done to change my experience. At times I find this struggle with not fearing abandonment by others in my life to be quite a struggle for me. It continues to be something ( a fear) with which I continue to struggle.

I am thankful for the relationship that my mother and I have now. I am thankful that we both have each other. My mom knows me inside and out and is one of my closest friends. My mom and I have gone on several trips together for vacation and had a glorious time. When my mom and i go on road trips, we often explore areas we’ve never been and stop when we see something that we’d like to check out. We’re not fond of deadlines when travelling and like to have a general idea of where we’re going and staying the next night but love to just let things happen as they do otherwise. We both love dogs and have been deeply devoted to our dogs that we’ve owned. My mom has put up with me and loved me through all my crushes and devastations of being a teen, and through the numerous boyfriends I’ve had and the ups and downs of life. I know that my mom misses her mom terribly (she passed away years ago) and is so thankful that the internet and the telephone make connecting with her brother and sisters so much easier then it used to be. I am so proud of my mom for stepping out of her comfort zone and learning about and then beginning to lead Grief Share at my parents church for the past two years. I am so proud of the ways that she’s stepped up and spoken truth into people’s lives.

while my mom and I started off with a rough beginning, and have had some life experiences not turn out the way we imagined, I am so thankful for the mother that i do have. I know that our relationship is a gift, and I treasure it.

2 thoughts on “my mommy and me

  1. Wow. Thank you for trusting us with your story. So glad that you are able to circle around as an adult and see the past through different eyes. Grace is a gift to both us and the one needing it, no? Again, thank you so much for sharing your heart.

  2. oh, wow.
    what a beautiful, redemptive story. this is so honest and so searching, friend. i feel like i’ve peeked into your heart.

    what a precious mother, who did the best she could, and an amazing God who ties up all our loose ends and makes something even more beautiful with what is untucked around the corners of our lives.

    thank you for this at ip. LOVED it.

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