Friday, December 4, 2009

Birthday Bash - ing

Yesterday, December 3rd, was my mother's birthday.  It has been so long since I have acknowledged it, that I am not even sure of her age.  Somewhere in her late 50's to very early 60's.  I discussed it with my son - sending an email greeting or calling last night.  The look on my son's face said it all!  I understood immediately why, but still feel guilty every year.

On my 25th birthday, my son and I had gone to visit my mother.  She had baked me a beautiful bird house (3D) cake.  After a tense supper, she cautiously brought the cake to the table, and placed it in front of me.  I was (always have been) impressed with the talents my mother has in the kitchen.  I cut into the cake, and began to serve everyone there.  Everyone but me.  The cake was chocolate with fudge frosting........I don't care for chocolate......in fact, never had.  I declined with what I thought was a polite excuse.
"Aren't you going to have a piece?", my mother demanded with an expression on her face that I was familiar with.  It was the madness creeping up and about to escape.
"No thanks, mom.  I am full from your wonderful supper.  But thank you, it's beautiful.", I replied; watching every word I said, and what tone I used.
Picking up the remaining cake, and lifting herself abruptly from her chair, she declared, "Nothing I do will ever be good enough for you, will it (my name)?!"  She took the platter into the kitchen and threw the cake into the sink. 

I never knew what to say, and was always left thinking of alternatives. 
"Aren't you going to have a piece" she would have asked.
"No thanks.  I don't like chocolate and never have." I could have said.
"Since when?  You are lying!  You always want to make me feel bad!" I imagine her saying.

No, that version wouldn't have been any better, yet, would have been certainly worse.  So, Yes, I lied about why I didn't want cake.  And, no, my mother never knew enough about me to know I don't like chocolate. But, what I did gain from that day, was the realization that no matter what I had said or done (not only at that instant, but in any moment) my mother was going to feel insecure.

I believe we all have reasons to be insecure, fearful, angry.  I also believe that we need to evaluate those feelings before we turn on someone.  I  often ask myself, "Are they trying to hurt me?" followed by "Why would they want to?".  If the answers come out as anything other then "yes", and a valid reason as to their motive behind it, then I smile, nod, and put my baggage back into the suitcase I brought with me.

It isn't easy to find positive in a hurtful situation.  But, I have actually found that less people mean to hurt you, then more.  We are all struggling through this life with blinders of some sort distorting our views.  We each have to accept responsibility for those feelings, and not walk around believing everyone has negative motives.

If we don't , then we become what we claim to hate, and we definately pass that on to our own children.

1 comment:

  1. it must be hard for you son. i hope he understands his grandma has a serious problem and that has nothing to do with him, or you. don't feel guilty - you tried your best with her.

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