FTIAT: Mothers and Daughters
Katy (I Want A Dumpster Baby) caught me with her name, but kept me with her heart. I once tried to explain her to my godmother, saying that I loved all of the things about her that are like my mom while also loving her for who she is even apart from that. When I met her in March, I could feel her before I even saw her. And when I saw her, the love just radiated from her as if it were literally a light.
Katy is, as she says, an alcoholic who doesn’t drink and a smoker who doesn’t smoke. I say she is a lover who loves and loves and loves, sometimes with funniness, often with glitter guns and others with don’t-you-dare-try-that-on-me firmness, but always in a way that makes me think, “Man, is the world better for you being in it.”
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Mothers and Daughters
Here’s the thing about Mothers and Daughters. It’s a tricky relationship. One that ebbs and flows and, ultimately, one that teaches a girl how to get along in the world as a girl and then as a woman. The mother does her best to teach her daughter what she has learned and then does her best to let her go. No matter how many wrong turns the daughter makes, the mother is just there letting her know that she is loved. The mother will do anything for her daughter, and yet, the one thing she will not do is love her to death. There is a point where the mother does the one thing that she never thought she would have to do and that is say, “enough.” From this tiny little woman who is my mom comes this powerhouse of strength, faith and commitment. My mom is the strongest woman I’ve ever known. She has the strength and conviction of an army of men.
I may not have always agreed with her. I still don’t. But I respect her. And the best thing is that today, I’ve earned her respect. I make living amends to my mom each day I am clean and sober. It’s the best gift I could give her. I want so desperately to give her a grandchild. I am working my best on that effort and my mom has been my angel while I’ve been going though this fertility struggle. With little notes every other day, just saying “HIYA” or “How you doing Honey” or stories of my niece and nephews she knows will make me smile.
She also takes the time to write long, beautiful notes to me since they moved across the country and I am so appreciative. She knows I don’t like to talk on the phone and she has adapted. My mom is the best audience a comedienne like me could ever want. She laughs at EVERYTHING I say, all the while saying, “You are so funny, Kitten.”
I’ve been given the gift of watching my mom explore and open her mind and world to new ideas and to not see things as so black and white. I hope I have had a hand in that. It’s made me less judgmental. I’ve been sober for 10 years and when I got sober, I started smoking cigarettes and continued for 10 years. My dear sweet mom never said one word about that. The whole time, and I know she hated it. Always has. But it was the lesser of two evils and if she could have her daughter sober and smoking, that was the better option for her. NO JUDGEMENT. I find that incredible. She would even come outside with me when I visit while I smoked because she just wanted to be with me. We weren’t very touchy feely while I was growing up, but I tell my mom every chance I get how much I love her and respect her. I watched her wish she could have had a more open relationship with her mother, and I’ll be damned if I let that happen with us. I wrap my arms around her tiny little frame and I almost cry every time because I love that woman so much it hurts.
I’m so thankful I’ve had the gift of time and sobriety to grow with my mom. I think about our relationship today and it is strong. It is blooming. We like each other today. So very much.
We’ve grown, we’ve changed, we’ve made mistakes, we’ve challenged, we’ve accepted, we’ve forgiven, we’ve healed. And now, we just love. For this I am thankful.