Posted by: thewoobdog | May 13, 2007

Big Shoes

You know, I think maybe the whole thought of being a mom scares me because I can’t see myself ever being as selfless and giving as my own mom.  I just have a fear of ending up trying to live up to a standard I’m almost sure I couldn’t reach – always being willing to take the leftovers or go without (physically or emotionallly or temporally) so that my family could have the choicest bits.  Giving so much of myself that I am left empty and unfulfilled.  Are moms allowed to feel resentful?  I’m sure I would.  Then I would feel guilty for feeling resentful, then resentful for feeling guilty… you get the picture.  How does one avoid a martyr complex as a mom?  There are so many things only a mom can do – at least in my world – and yet she very rarely receives the thanks or even acknowledgement she deserves for any of it.  I don’t know if I could live that way.

I remember when my husband and I were counseling with our minister before our wedding, and he told my husband, “Now, remember, she needs her ‘mom’ time.  You’ve got to know that it’s nothing about you – she just needs her ‘mom’ time.”  It’s true, I guess – I mean, it’s not like my mom and I really accomplish a lot during the infrequent days we spend going off the mountain to shop or whatnot – but it’s just a necessary thing for my overall well-being.  I don’t know why.  If I were my mom I’d probably drive me crazy – you’d think by the time I was 30 I could manage to handle all the stuff I still ask for her advice on.  It’s easy for people who don’t know my mom to think she’s a little out there or kind of clueless, but there’s actually no one whose opinion I trust more on almost everything than my mom.*  The flashes of insight she has really are amazing – my husband even has gotten to the point now where if we have a question on something he’s as likely as not to say, “We should ask your mom what she thinks.”  So I do.  Which is why if I were her I’d probably drive me nuts (not being nearly as patient as she is), and I’d probably tell me, “You’re 30 years old!  You actually CAN figure some of this out on your own!”  She does occasionally give me this look and say, “Duh!” when I do something particularly stupid, but it’s a very loving ‘duh’.  I guess.  I’d probably also get annoyed with me for telling me I should make my other kids get off their butts and do something, and I’d probably point out to me that, being without kids myself, I probably am not the world’s greatest fount of mothering knowledge and resources, but somehow my mom avoids smacking me when I offer my unsolicited parenting advice and just smiles and nods and mostly ignores it, waiting for the day when she can (she hopes) offer it all back tenfold when (I say if) I have little rugrats of my own.  Sigh.

Anyway, HAPPY MOTHERS’ DAY, MOM!!!!!  Hope it’s a good one – I can’t help noticing that you have bailed me out of two messes already this weekend, so if you’d like to indulge in a bit of well-earned M-Day martyrdom, I say go for it!  I’ll even grovel, if you want.

 * My dad is another source of seemingly endless wisdom and knowledge, but about totally different things.  It’s weird.  Between my parents I have a better source of all things life than probably just about anybody I know.   I feel bad for people who don’t have what I have – there is no way I would be where I am today or who I am today without the awesome parents I have, who drilled into me such a plethora of practical knowledge that I am continually amazed by how many people don’t know the simplest things about life and living.

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