On Mother’s Day we take the time to thank our mothers for all they do for us. It is a day set aside to acknowledge all of the gifts our mothers have given us, most of all birth and bringing us into this life. There are many things that I revered my mother for, and I think of her all of the time on this day, especially since she graduated to another existence nine years ago. I used to have mother “issues”. What are “mother issues”? Mother issues are tears in the mother-child relationship caused by what we perceived as imperfections in our mother. They can include:
- Not feeling wanted or nurtured by Mother
- Feeling abused physically or emotionally by Mother
- Feeling rejected or not wanted by Mother
- Being constantly compared by Mother to others
- Feeling not enough because Mother could not be pleased
- Feeling incomplete because of constant Mother criticism
- Feeling fearful because Mother was a fearful person
- Feeling smothered because of Mother micromanagement
- Being trained by Mother to not trust anyone
- Lack of acceptance of self and others due to not feeling accepted by Mother
Our mother is the first being that most people meet on this planet. We are completely helpless and depend totally on her for feeding and nurturing. Father comes along later, but Mother is our first God(dess). When our Mother has issues of her own, and does not parent very well, this distorts our perception of the universe and can make it a very scary place. For those people who have caring and nurturing mothers the world is much different than for those that had troubled mothers.
I know that my Mother did the best she could. She raised four boys and was married to a military minded man. I am sure that there are things that she could have asked for but didn’t. I have been told that she was married for convenience to my father, she was in love with someone else. The community viewed her as a saint, she was active in the church and charities and was a popular socialite. She had a problem with alcohol, and eventually died from it. The problems of alcoholics were hers as well as ours, which often created friction and disharmony with her children, especially me. We all had our struggles with alcohol, the family legacy. As a small child, I can remember being physically disciplined for no reason or wondering where she was when she was late. I had deep betrayal issues, it has always been difficult to trust others.
There are some things I had to learn to come to peace with, with my mother. Unfortunately, it was not until after she left this planet that I learned these things, sometimes I think she may have had to leave for me to learn them. Here is what I learned to make peace with her:
- How I was raised has nothing to do with who I am
- How my Mother treated me does not define my self-worth
- I am worthy and perfect just the way I am
- She did the best she could with what she knew
- She was a loving person even though alcohol changed how she later expressed it
- I do not have to compare myself with anyone to determine if I’m good enough
- I received many blessings from my Mother, she was only human
- I do not have the right to blame my Mother for anything I am or am not
- I am old enough to take responsibility for myself
- I place my trust in people using my own judgement, and it is my responsibility for what happens after that
- She brought me into this world, and for that I can only be grateful.
- Everything I may not like is only ego. I am here because of Mother
- I do not need approval from anyone…what others think of me is none of my business
- I am not a victim, I am a survivor, I am a thriver
- I chose my Mother
It has been a long lesson to quit judging my Mother. My experiences with her made me who I am. When I grew up and grew a pair (yup, those), I quit blaming her for my issues and grew to love myself, As Is.
It’s a Good News/Bad News situation; No one has the right to blame anyone else for who they are. Including those who raised us. Who we are is totally our responsibility. The best news of all, gratitude or blame, it’s always going up to us to choose how we perceive it…