Woke up with the phrase "two wrongs don't make a right" on my mind.  I was trying to get out the door to meet a friend going to my acupuncturist for the first time, but of course I had to check my e-mail.

Mom read my post (yeah, I don't think I mentioned that she found the blog a while ago--I did warn her this is my place to speak freely about anything), and sent me an e-mail saying I embarrassed her.  There's something else I won't mention but it's always the hit below the belt I get whenever I mention anything older than recent history.  It strikes me as not true, but maybe I'm just coming across wrong.  It happens.  Too often. 

I think she misread the post as my saying bad things about her ("helpful to a fault" and "does too much" don't really sound defamatory in my book), but really I was saying the worst things about myself and just recounting the lousy thing that happened.  (She did agree she was tired.)  
It's all a big misunderstanding.  I felt horrible she was upset, and I cried through almost my entire acupuncture treatment (which of course when I told Mom that, she told me that was a silly thing to do. .  . and that, my friends, is the difference between her and me).

The truth is, I want my parents to look at me and say, "We raised a functioning adult," but I worry they don't, because I can barely support myself or do things for them now that I'm older (and so are they).  I don't have any kids, and I worry when my mom gets all stressed out and exhausted with my brother's kids that by the time I do (might) have kids, there won't be anything left. 

That doesn't give me the right to get impatient with her, though.

So, I apologized.  I gave her the Karen Carpenter CD that I found the other day for her (one of her fave songs is on it).  The kiddos went with my dad to take Younger Sister to the train station, so Mom got a few minutes of peace (I think).

Later, I got a phone call from Mom: the kiddos have been enjoying the bubble wands I brought over, and Niece, who finally got her birthday present from me today, has been playing with her doll all afternoon.  (We've been trying for a while to teach Niece the importance of brushing her hair to keep away the tangles and I thought this particular doll might help.)

It feels good to do something right at last.

At least, until my SIL puts out a hit on me for giving Niece a (gasp!) Barbie.


ccr in MA said…
Isn't being an adult just too much sometimes? I want my mother to see me as a functional adult (which I think she usually does), but quite often I don't *feel* like a functioning adult! In my 40s,for heaven's sake.

I hope you feel better about the whole situation soon. Rah rah! I'm on your side! Not that there are sides!
Kate P said…
CCR--Thank you. That's the rub for me: I didn't like being a kid, but being an adult doesn't seem to have "caught on" for me yet!
Sara said…
I had a heart-to-heart with my boss not too long ago. I had felt that my lead was disappointed in me and felt that I was doing a terrible job at work.

After a while we realized that no, i was projecting my worst insecurities about myself onto my perceptions of what she felt about me. I was using her as a mirror of my own perceived failures when all of that really had nothing to do with how she felt at all.

So, long story short, it sounds like you're making up your own mind about what she feels about you. That is exactly what I was doing.

Once I accepted that, a weight fell from me. I was able to justify everything I was doing and realized I wasn't a walking disappointment. And if someone felt that way, tough, they didn't know the true story. My attitude improved, I stopped acting apologetic for everything, and I got on with it.

I was my own worst enemy.

Make sure you're not yours.

Feel free to ignore me or let me know if you want to talk. I'm here for you. :)
Kate P said…
Sara--oh, you mean like. . .

MOM SAYS: Here's a helpful hint.
I HEAR: Here's a helpful hint because I know better than you what you need to drive in the rain and I'm worried you're gonna kill us all.

I REACT & SAY: It's fine; sit back and relax and let me drive you!
MOM HEARS: Sit back and shut up!
And then reacts with silent treatment for the rest of the day.


I probably am my own worst enemy in that I never am able to express what I need, and I've found that even when I am, I get soooo disappointed if I expect those needs will be met. (Because they're not what other people think they should be. Not unreasonable, just unusual-seeming or something.) I could go on but I think I'd just rather move on.

Popular Posts