Into the Depths: Beginnings or Something Like Them

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Beginnings or Something Like Them

My mother starts chemotherapy tomorrow. I am apprehensive. Shouldn't be I don't guess, it isn't me that will have poisons shot straight into my blood for hours tomorrow. Yet I guess I know that those poisons will decide my mothers fate, so I am nervous. I have been contemplating the possibility of my mother's death the last couple of days. I think, though I don't know from personal experience, that most people think about making peace, giving and receiving forgiveness etcetera, when someone is nearing death, or possibly could be. So I found it odd that I was not wondering if I would feel guilty if I didn't fix my relationship with my mother by forgiving her. I instead have been wondering if I will feel guilty for not allowing my mother to love me. I am, somewhat superficially(ie. not going too deep,) trying to decide if it is my fault that we have no relationship. If I am, out of spite or fear or anger or whatever, holding her at a distance myself. Perhaps I choose not to let her in my life. Is that my way of punishing her, of exacting vengeance? Can I change it? Can I forgive her for my childhood, can I admit, honestly, that she did the best she could......or even that she flat out screwed up..........but she is human and prone to mistakes like all of us? I remember about four years ago, she told me she loved me when we were getting off the phone, and for the first time since either of us could remember, I said it back. Not because I had an epiphany, but because I was tired of her complaining that I never did. She cried. So, now, even when it makes my stomach turn, I do my best to always say it back. Again though, I am faced with the how. You know, this time I am even faced with, do I really want to. If I am completely honest, I have to admit that I don't want to let her in my life and I don't want to let her love me. I don't want to give her the satisfaction. How horrible am I. She will go to fight for her life tomorrow as I selfishly hold mine for ransom. What is the price I wonder? What would she have to do to 'earn' my forgiveness, my love, my respect, my mercy. Holy crap I am being honest. It is a good thing that 99 % of those who read this don't know me. This honesty does provide perspective on my inability to forgive myself or accept God's forgiveness, though. If this is what I expect of those who hurt me, of course I would expect it of myself, even more so I think. I have to pay the price. I have to make it right. I have to make me right. Impossible. What a beating this thing called life is.

I started therapy today. By the above oversized paragraph you can see how far I've gotten so far. HA. Seriously though, I like the lady so far. I like that she asks questions rather than waiting for me to come up with things to talk about. I can't do that. I have mentioned before that I suck at talking. I was so nervous today. I would answer her questions in short, choppy, sometimes nonsensical answers. I avoided, changed the subject, looked at anything in the room but her. Overall, however, I tried to be as honest as possible. Well, I was honest, I didn't lie about anything, I guess I mean as real as possible. She says she wants me to come every other week as she expects this to be long term therapy (yes, I expected that) and she doesn't want me to go broke. I have no insurance of course, so it is all out of pocket. I think I would prefer every week though, I guess I will wait and see how this goes. Chances are, since she will be my one outlet in the world for now, that I would probably develop dependency issues were I to go too often.

She is a Christian, which is good. I thought, at first, of going to a church type counseling facility but was wary of the 'Sunday school' answers, and the 'just pray and God will make everything better' type mentality. So, I decided on a secular facility. I could tell by her profile that she probably was a Christian, so I wasn't too worried. I like that I can get a 'real world' perspective from someone who also believes that "God is right in the middle of the struggles with us" ( her words).

I am not thrilled about my homework. I have to read two books about my inner child. Gay. (My inner child isn't gay, don't worry, I just mean the concept. GAY) I get it, I mean I know she is right, it just sounds so dang cheesy. I also have to journal for at least five minutes a day. Blogging doesn't count??? I don't know why she supposes writing is better than typing but I guess I will just accept it and go along. What really bites is what she expects me to journal about. She wants me to write, every day, for five entire minutes, about something good that happens every single friggin day. I sometimes can't remember something good for the past several weeks....Every day, seriously???? So all day today I was trying to look for something good. UHHH work, more work, a little more work. All Star T-Ball game could be good......no we lost. All Star Kid Pitch could be good.......no, lost that one too. If the Mavericks don't win, I'm screwed for today. Can homework start tomorrow??? What am I supposed to write about, really? It is good that my car didn't blow up today. It is good that I didn't get fired. It is good that I didn't get any speeding tickets though I never drive the speed limit on the highway. Hmmm do those count?? My boss did tell me this afternoon that had we met before he got married he would have dated me in a heartbeat....don't worry he prefaced by saying he wasn't hitting on me and would never leave nor cheat on his wife, all of which I already knew. I think he has it in his head that my only reason for going into therapy is because I am not dating seriously or married. How very little he knows. He doesn't realize that the fact that he sees no reason for me to go to therapy simply means that my facade is serving it's purpose. My act is convincing.

OK, we have 26.2 seconds to go and we are down by three...I really need SOMETHING good to journal about. Please oh please hit a three. ahhh crap. We just lost the ball and fouled Wade. We are screwed. So much for that journal entry. I give up.


Anonymous Queen Beth said...

That was just heart wrenching Stephanie. It's hard to forgive, but sometimes necessary. I say this like I have the corner on it. I don't. I just know sometimes it's better to let it go instead of forgiving. Sometimes forgiveness is too much of a commitment. I have had to set aside many things for the sake of my sanity.

June 21, 2006 12:48 AM  
Blogger Shayne said...

I am laughing out loud. My counselor has me journaling every day too, and I too have to write down (or I'm supposed to at least) all the blessings that God has given me each day.

Honestly, when I do it it does help, but like you...I sometimes have trouble writing down the good things that happen. But I don't get the whole "blogging doesn't count" thing. That sucks!

Maybe you could type out your journal and then print it? Would that suffice? You could keep your pages in a 3 ring binder.

Forgive your mom. I don't say this flippantly like there's some sort of switch you can turn on and BINGO! all is forgiven and right with the world. I say this as a vet who has been in the trenches.

The forgiveness isn't really for her...it's for you. Whatever she did when you were a kid...it's not worth the rest of your life. As long as you refuse to forgive, she still has power over you. Let her go. In the process you'll free yourself.

P.S. Forgiveness does not equal mushy gushy mom/daughter shopping trips, or two hour conversations on the phone. It doesn't mean she gets away with anything. It just is what it is...you laying down and letting go of your past. It's not easy...but it's worth it.

June 21, 2006 8:02 AM  
Blogger LiteratureLover said...

Your mother will never be able to pay enough. And probably, neither will you. That's the point. You can't. The tallys will never add up in your mind. But can you accept forgiveness? Or even give it, anyway?

June 24, 2006 9:50 PM  

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