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Tuesday, February 7, 2017

Greener Pastures

No Place Like My Own

A pair of beautiful glass slippers. A young girl's dream; her escape to that perfect place, that magical place away from home.
Isn't that the way the story went?

Well, I was once that girl with a dream of leaving home, and being on my own; doing things different than my mother. At the time, I had created a wall between her and me. She'd become the wicked witch in my mind. And I had to get away; show her how mothering supposed to be done.

But I would do it right as I was the last of the Babyboomers, the generation that still respected their elders and didn't throw sass.

I valued my mother's opinions and advice. However, I was gonna raise my children different. I was gonna show her what a great mom looked like. Yes. I was going to rise above all mothers. I would grasp the stars with my bare hands, care for them until they shined brighter, and then toss them back, one by one; out into the universe my way. My children, from birth, would think the world of me and I'd be the mom of moms, the mother of the year; and all the years after that.
Well, nope. Didn't happen that way. I had, unfortunately, missed a whole lot of in-betweens on balance as a dutiful daughter, a wise grown-up, or matured mother.
I had left home with no idea what I was doing and with no clue where any of those mind blowing stars would go now that I'd snatched them down. I didn't even know why I'd touched them in the first place... I mean what my reasoning was? They were perfect just the way they were.
The truth was...I was lost.
 I was out there in this great big scary world with a husband and no idea of what I was doing. At the time, I didn't even know that I was lost or that living my life could be better. I mean, I was clueless.
But wait. I'd learned everything a young lady was supposed to in her years of growing up with a mother and father. Things like cleaning, cooking, helping out with my siblings, and being a good student, daughter, friend. I'd even put up with all the madness teens have to put up with and never speak about.
That was until I had my first child and everything changed, and I saw myself for who I really was. An amateur. A young nineteen-year-old kid trying to be my son's mother, and my husband's wife. Be different and do things better than my mom.
And in the beginning, I was different. I was a better mother and wife because I had found that balance. The thing she couldn't. I mean I was firm with my children but loving and wiser.
Never let your kids see me sweat. I had the formula... that fitted key as that kept them out of my adult madness. Never showed off my adult tantrums in their presence. I'd even gave them fewer chores, less of the momma stare; you know that look that speaks louder than any belt ever could. I had even tossed in conversations, and laughter, and time.
My nurturing side... that side of mothering my mother couldn't give to me nor any of my six other siblings, not because she didn't want too, but because she didn't know how because she hadn't learned it from her mom, who hadn't been taught to by her mom.
So you see the deli ma. The cycle.
Well, I can tell you that I did do it differently than my mother. One handsome son and two gorgeous daughters, later. And I can say that my experience has been one hell of a journey. Smooth roads, driven up, up, up by roller coasters without doors, and a whole lot of twist and screwy, uncharted territories along the way.
 And now my babies are all grown up, and they've no dought found their way. Although during their way out; meaning out of the house, they've kindly and lovingly informed me of all the mistakes as their mother that I've made along my way.
And to think I'd thought that I'd done it all so much better than my mom.
But I must admit, they were three bold kids. Why my husband and I had preached that voicing their opinion was important was beyond me. However, I had agreed with some things, although done very cautiously.  Had even found myself using the momma stare of which I'd swore to never, ever use on my children.
But I listened while biting my lip and grinding away at my teeth. But I was not going to allow them; meaning my three ungrateful children to throw poisonous darts at me, not after all my husband and I had done for them, had been through just to get them to where they were.

However. After all the disagreements, the tense faces, my stubbornness, and ME, slowly breaking away at the momma wall,  I can say I learned a thing or two from my beautiful, smart children.
I'd even realized that what happened in my home as a child; that place I couldn't wait to leave. Tap my shoes three times and wish it all way, was not at all a reason to want to leave. Yes, there were lots of mistakes. Lots of things that could have been better. But as mother's we do our best. And sometimes, no matter how much of our best we think we're doing...it can go either way. There is no magic. We are the magic. And if we live right. See our children.  Do right by them so that they do right by their kids. That is the magic. And we can live with that.

Happy you, happy life, happy everyone else

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