Because I could not stop for death....

I got knocked up instead...

Thursday, June 30, 2005


This post on RedMum almost got me crying. She talks about having a crazy fight with her 13 year old daughter.

I lost my mother to breast cancer in 1989. I was 11, going on 12. Part of me is forever 11. Part of me will always associate my mother with adjustable beds, those kidney shaped puke bowls, jaundice. The inevitable look of death she held those last few months. That last conversation we had that I cannot remember, aside from pushing her in a wheelchair. Did I block out the words? Did she tell me how much she loved me, but that the cancer was non-negotiable, would not relent, and was slowly eating her? Did she just sit, quietly, watching the daughter who was so unaware of how much her world was about to shift? Did she search for the words that don't exist?

I used to listen to girls, and now, women, complain about their mothers. How callous they are, how mean, how lazy, how cheap. All I hear is why they dislike their mothers.

Girls, Ladies-you know not what you do.

One day, your Mother's will no longer be here. I cherish my father, even when he drives me insane, because it's the little habits that make him lovely, and memorable. I don't remember most of my mother's, which is harder. Nor do I remember her voice, or her touch. I would love to have a fight, any kind of conversation, even a bad one.

Remember that. Someday you might miss all the fights you'll never have.


At 8:41 AM, Blogger Red Mum said...

Arrgg I posted on this already and somehow it didnt appear...

But anyway I wanted to thank you for your comments, very thought provoking and it made me, we all need reminders, appreciate my own mum or think about how I appreciate her.

I'm sorry you lost your mum at a time when all wee girls need them most. I'm sure she has watched you grow up and make your own babies with love and pride. And I'm sure you still feel her about you.

At 1:45 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

while what you say is really good for most people to hear -- don't forget there are also those of us out there whose moms (and dads) were truly horrible. and while your mom was cruelly taken from you too young, i was cruelly left with mine for far too long.
and while you might miss all the fights and interactions that you'll never have, i wish i could forget most of what they put me through.


At 4:00 PM, Blogger Jesus Of Suburbia said...

I myself have blogged torrents of abuse at both my parents. Now when I was 15 I came close to losing my mum to a heart attack, and have come close since, and yes, I will confess the fear of losing her was devastating, but that doesn't in any way negate all that she's put me through. To constantly point out my inadequacies, bearing in mind it was this attitude on her part that was a factor in my suicide attempt last year, smacks of terrible parenting.

I love my mum, if for nothing else than for giving me life and life to my sister, but equally, if she died tomorrow, I'd hurt for a while, but I couldn't deny that in the long term my life would probably be enriched.

It's a sad state of affairs when your parents torment you so badly that you wish them dead, because I want nothing more than be able to love them both, but one by one they've both done too much for me to forgive. If you don't believe me, read but a snippet of their crimes on my blog. I've been beaten severely by both of them, within an inch of my life.

That said, your advice is still sound for some people. I know that I'll be showing this to my girlfriend because I feel that whilst her mum isn't exactly perfectly, she's in no way a hideous monster (like mine) and she probably could do with appreciating her a bit more.

At 9:35 PM, Blogger thordora said...

It's funny, but my mother and I did NOT get along. Her constant pushes towards pink & frilly, her blatant disapproval of all my interests. ALL that normal crap.

But at the end of the day, the only thing left was the love she held for me, the love that kept her alive until there was no hope.

Do many of you have TERRIBLE parents? I'm quite sure you do. But maybe once, try to find the person behind all that. When my father became the raging alcoholic that pissed on my door at 2am, gave me tension headaches and ultimately drove me from his live for 5 years, I STILL looked for and found HIM, the person I love.

Of course, he's never abused me. That's an entirely different story. And some of us really do get the shit end of the stick. I urge you guys to tell your stories. It does help.

Thanks for the comments. Hug whomever you love, and tell them, often. They may be gone tomorrow.

At 10:35 AM, Blogger Red Mum said...

All I can say to those people really hurt and damaged by their parents is that I am soo sorry that your experience with your parents left you so scarred and hurt.

I did say in my post about mothers/fathers that I did know there were people who should not be parents, who do not deserve the name, but on the whole most parents struggle to do the best they can.

I have no doubt that, well I know, there are things as a parent I have done that I wish I hadn't, I know there are times when I could have handled things better.

But I struggle on, I do the best i can and most of all I can offer my unconditional love and try to bring her up the best I can.

There are mistakes my parents made which I swore I would never do and I have stuck to that but I have no doubt have made my own which my daughter won't do. Isnt that the way it is sometimes?

There's no switch to turn on when you become a parent, I wish there was - sometimes we learn with our children...

I do know though sometimes our views of our parents are blinkered by our own regressive selfishness, like a hangover from childhood and we need to acknowledge our parents as the people they are and were before they had us, people with dreams and beliefs that they would try their best and sometimes this fell a little short.

And there are those who were not nourished, loved enough, or treated like the little treasures they are and I am so sorry for that.

Without this sounding naff or twee, I do wish you healing, much healing, happiness and most of all love.

At 1:44 PM, Blogger doris said...

Interesting comments. I have long excused my parents but I don't anymore. It is very hard for me to find the love and the tenderness from the person behind all the crud.

On your post, you say you would love to have a fight rather than nothing. I can see where you are coming from. My half sister was abandoned through my mother's inadequacies and she always pined for what she didn't have and then she found out what sort of life we had and felt she got off lightly after all.

Whatever. Life can be very painful and as parents I reckon we all make mistakes. Just different ones to the generation before. I know my relationship with my children is wonderful but not without problems. I would dread to think that my kids should think of me the way I think of my mother. But I haven't treated my children the way my mother did.

How awful for you to lose your mother - I'm sure you would have had a wonderful relationship. You would surely know if you didn't.


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