Guest Post: We’re trying, dammit!

23 Dec

Lorrie’s guest post today is honest. I was reading it and thought back to my rant about my mother last week. Things aren’t as black and white as I try to make it when dealing with her. I have to step back and realize that she’s just trying to do the same thing I am: create happiness. I can’t lie, Lorrie. It is hard to see past the ‘spiteful and impatient and petty and prickly’ we all call mom.

~~~~

Sport here! Var and I had a veritable throw down after reading this post about how we interpreted it.  My take: Moms, listen up! Your kids are showing you through their actions that all the extra pressure you’re creating around the holidays and all the over-the-top crap you’re doing isn’t what matters.  Ask any kid and they’ll tell you, they’d rather have a happy mom over a stressed out mom for the holidays. I understand the desire to do extra special things around this time of the year to create memories. Just make sure the memory you’re creating isn’t one of you pouting every Christmas because you feel under appreciated.  – I think whatever you take away from this piece, it’s great food for thought heading into the next couple of days.

And now, on to Lorrie’s take…

__________________

Two days ago, I came down with a wicked cold. This evening, I decided to mix cold medications and rum and this is the letter that resulted. Please note: all children and pets were safe during this endeavor. I taught the oldest one– the cat, not the kid– how to dial 911 if need be!

Dear Scoundrels,

You all have mothers. At some point, you did, unless you were spawned, or grew from a spore, which is pretty frickin’ sweet and I’d like to hear about it some time. But, for the purposes of this missive, I’m going to assume the majority of you have mothers, and, in some capacity, are visiting/dealing/putting up with her right now.Kids and the toy Santa.

I have a mom. She’s on the awesome side of things: she looks a lot like me (score one for genetics!) and drinks and smokes and, if she’s feeling on the bawdy side of things, swears like a sailor. She’s one of my best friends, and I couldn’t have gotten through a good stretch of my life without her.

That said: she drives me absolutely batshit.

I will not detail any of the traits which push me towards that brink of draining the bottle of rubbing alcohol and driving my car head-long into a bus-full of nuns– I love her enough to know that’s not a Christmas gift. I will also not detail the parts that I find most spectacular, as I already know, upon reading this, she will demand to hear all of them, as she will be greatly offended that there is anything about her I don’t like.

How do I know this? Well, for one thing, I’ve known her all thirty-one years of my life. For another, I’m a mother myself.

Granted, my kids are (newly) seven and (almost) five. They have yet to form any really complex reactions to me– currently, I am saintly or evil. My daughter is my husband borne a girl, and, as such, she is terrifically endearing and infuriating in the same breath. I am, however, the mother of a mama’s boy and, by God, they are the best people on the face of this earth. But, for both, I still fall firmly into one of those aforementioned camps, despite my best intentions.

Being a mother is a mind-fuck in the best of circumstances, but is something else entirely in the holiday season. It is a given that, every year, I bust my ass to give both my kids the best Christmas possible, to get them gifts they’ll love, they want, and, inevitably, I am blown out of the water by another person. My daughter’s first real Christmas (that is, the first at which she could interact, being all of four days old at her first), mostly broke, I spent months tracking down and buying her gifts that would encourage her spirit and creativity. Christmas Eve, my husband went to Target for something and, in addition, bought her a five dollar pack of rubber balls. Six years later, she still speaks of these rubber balls, as though they contained magical properties. We still have several of them, and she cherishes them. The beautifully-handcrafted wood toys I got her that Christmas? I think they were all donated a year later.

Every year is like this, and, yet, every year, I attempt to win the coveted Mom of the Year crown. I judge myself mediocre at best most of the year, but something about December turns me into the Martha Fucking Stewart of mothering. I bake. I sew. I decorate. I wrap. I host. Things get haywire. I, like this year, come down with a crippling cold, but I’m still here, with my needle and thread and maniacal plans. I’m that mom when the tinsel goes on the tree.

The thing is: most of us are that mom at one time or another. And that’s what I’m here to tell you, Scoundrels: we are that mom because we love you. It may sound trite, or dumb, but most of our meddling, our over-enthusiasm, our pushiness, it comes from our desire to show that love in a sort of fireworks way. And, like most humans, we’re damned sloppy about it. We’re spiteful and impatient and petty and prickly– I’ve spent the last week feeling sorry for myself because “no one appreciates me!” We put ourselves in this position and, really, we can’t wonder when our children and other assorted family gets frustrated with our whiny asses.

That said: we’ll do it anyway.

So, my friends, what I’m saying (in a nicely drunk, roundabout way) is: please be gentle with your mothers. In a way, we’re all drunk on rum and cold meds, and all we want is to wrap you up in that festive Santa paper and make your heart happy the whole year ’round.

Merry Christmas, Scoundrels, from your very own resident (until Sport sprogs, that is) mama.

XOXO, Lorrie

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2 Responses to “Guest Post: We’re trying, dammit!”

  1. Jeannie Hill December 23, 2010 at 6:05 pm #

    OK, kid. Tell me all the good stuff about me. I can’t imagine what the annoying little bits could be.Indeed this is a fine time of the year to feel sorry for ourselves and feel totally under appreciated. What do you say we be kind to one another. We really are incredibly fortunate.I love you,my grandchildren and the fellow you married.I believe this may prove to be our finest Christmas Eve, Christmas,day after Christmas,New Years in quite some time. Let’s drink,smoke and enjoy. Love,ym

  2. Mechelle December 24, 2010 at 4:03 pm #

    Great post. I’m going to see my ma tonight. And now, I’ll try to be nice to her.

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