Thursday, January 28, 2010

Memories-Of The Way I Was- Rewrite


A year ago, when my parents sold the house my sister and I grew up in, and moved into one of those new Over 55 retirement communities that are being built up around here, my mother asked me to come over to the house she found somethings she would like me to have, and if I didn't want them, she would toss them


I went over the next day, where she handed me a large Macy's bag with my childhood memories. Everything was neatly collected. I was amazed.

Mom had kept all things bright and beautiful from my childhood, K-12. There were finger paints, coloring, cut outs, reportcards, extra wallet sized photos, You name it, it was there. Writing exemplars when you first learn how to print, and then in 3rd grade when we learned script.

Stories I had written. It was really wonderful and weird at the same time.

I saw somethings that were amazing and strange. In first grade the teacher asked us what we wanted to be when we grew up.

I wanted to be a mommy. And an astronaut. I was fascinated with the whole NASA program from about 67-69 or so.

Then in 3rd grade, the teacher asked us what we wanted to be.

I of course, still wanted to be a mommy. I drew a picture of me with my favorite dolly at the time.

But I wanted to grow up and write books.

it stayed like that for the rest of my life. Motherhood and books.

Strange. Well, motherhood is out of the question unless when and if I ever meet my soulmate and he is patient and wants to go for medical assistance and en vitro and things like that. Or adopt, or has children of his own already.

My mother was the perfect 60's-70's mother. A combination of June Cleaver, and Mrs. Brady. And she was the hottest mother in the PTA. I admire her so damn much.

It is from her I have nothing but respect for anyone who is a mother. Juggling work, a house, children (or child) and hubby is hard work.

I'm crying now. Bare with me.

I realize I, as someone who has not been blessed yet with children should or should not make the next comment.

It's true I don't know what it is like to be a mother. It is true while some part of my brain can only imagine what it must be like to do the 3 am feedings and diaper changes, I've never done it. I've changed diapers in my life, yeah, and I have been "christened" by several friend's baby boys.

I know I would honestly die for my friends' young sons, and I hope i live long enough to dance at their weddings, and see their college graduations.

But I do know in the animal kingdom, baby birds are kicked out of the nest by their momma and they have to fly or they go ker-plunk on the ground. That is nature.

Human beings usually don't experience this until they are about 17 or 18, graduate high school, and then it's either work or college.

I imagine cutting the cord is a hard thing to do.

I know that parents never stop loving their children, no matter how old they get,, and how many mistakes they might make.

By making mistakes only can we grow.

But some day love is... love is.... I always found this to be what I wanted love to be.

From "The Fountainhead", by Ayn Rand.

I love you, Dominique. As selfishly as the fact that I exist. As selfishly as my lungs breath air. I breathe for my own necessity, for the fuel of my body, for my survival. I've given you not my sacrifice or my pity, but my ego and my naked need. This is the only way you can wish to be loved. This is the only way I can want you to love me. If you married me now, I would become your whole existence. But I would not want you then. You would not want yourself-and so you would not love me long. To say 'I love you' one must first know how to say the 'I'. The kind of surrender I could have from you now would give me nothing but an empty hulk. If I demanded it, I'd destroy you. That's why I won't stop you. I'll let you go to your husband. I don't know how I'll live through tonight, but I will. I want you whole, as I am, as you'll remain in the battle you've chosen. A battle is never selfless. [...] You must learn not to be afraid of the world. Not to be held by it as you are now. Never to be hurt by it as you were in that courtroom. I must let you learn it. I can't help you. You must find your own way. When you have, you'll come back to me. They won't destroy me, Dominique. And they won't destroy you. You'll win, because you've chosen the hardest way of fighting for your freedom from the world. I'll wait for you. I love you. I'm saying this now for all the years we'll have to wait. I love you, Dominique." [Howard Roark]



I need to find my I. I need to be incharge of my life again, captain of my destiny.

If I fail it was not from something you did. You gave me the bike,and the training wheels. It's time to take the training wheels off. I realize you did that once before, before my diagnosis, and even during my diagnosis until it became abundantly clear in my 30s I was and always will be bipolar.

But it's time to take the training wheels off now. And like the momma bird, baby will be fine and soar beautifully.

See, mom and dad gave me beautiful wings to soar with.

And I love them with every breath I take and am grateful to have been blessed by them.

8 comments:

Deputy's Wife said...

I can only imagine how hard it is to cut the cord from your own child. Why don't you adopt or be a foster mom? There's TONS of kids out there that need a loving mommy and I'm positive, that you would be the perfect one! :)

Syd said...

It is really nice that your mother saved all of those things from your childhood. My mother did the same. I cherish those things.

An Irish Friend of Bill said...

Out of the night that covers me,
Black as the pit from pole to pole,
I thank whatever gods may be
For my unconquerable soul.
In the fell clutch of circumstance
Invictus

I have not winced nor cried aloud.
Under the bludgeonings of chance
My head is bloody, but unbowed.
Beyond this place of wrath and tears
Looms but the Horror of the shade,
And yet the menace of the years
Finds and shall find me unafraid.
It matters not how strait the gate,
How charged with punishments the scroll,
I am the master of my fate:
I am the captain of my soul.

William Ernest Henley (1849–1903

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Invictus

See the film Invictus. you'll love it :)

susan said...

@Deputy's Wife= I tried to adopt, and was told I couldn't- because I was single, and because I was labeled "bipolar". I tried two years ago to get in the "Big Brother/Big Sisters" program as well, and was rejected for the same reason-bipolar.

Foster parents- never went down the road.... but right now I got some issues with SSI I need to hammer out first before I can go down that road, but it's a good idea, thank you.


Syd- I still have my first stuffed toy from childhood!

Irish- thank you. I haven't seen that poem in years, and it really hit the spot today. It's lovely, thank you.

JourneyBeyondSurvival said...

It seems as though I've tasted your personal emotions after reading this. I think it is a beautiful acceptance of NOW. That takes a specific type of percipience.

Herrad said...

Hi Susan,

Great post thanks for sharing.
I felt I was looking through the memories in the Macy bag with you.

Please come by my blog and pick up your award.
Love
Herrad

sallyo said...

What a beautiful tribute to your parents! I'm glad you have all those treasures from your childhood. Sometimes reminders of who we were help spur us on to who we want to become. I hope those cherished memories will help you in days to come.

Blackdog said...

Your quote reminded me of two things. On the ideal of love, of a DH Lawrence poem, that starts, I think,'We make a great mess of love, when we make an ideal of it.' and there is another quote too, originally in French, which translated goes something like 'Be like the fledging,who, sensing the branch break beneath her feet, sings, nevertheless, knowing she has wings.' I think we need to keep breathing, keep singing, keep loving, keep hoping, keep believing our way to give soaring flight to our dreams. I am so glad you have a loving relationship with your mother. I am so glad too that you feel so cherished and valued. That is a great gift, the invisible stabiliser, the unbroken cord between mother and their adult children, which surely also can be the 'wind beneath our wings.'

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