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Friday, May 15, 2015

It is Mother's Day; Here is a Card

It's Mother's Day; here's a card.
That is the card that I have always looked for on a day like Mother's Day, Father's Day, birthdays, and other holidays.
It is traditional that we love you and this is supposed to be your day so here is a card to let you know that I tried.

It is a difficult day. 
If you have taken years of strengthening, couraging up, and creating space between you and your parent because of all of the trauma or pain, then KUDOS to you. YAY you!
Now face this day designed to celebrate parents.
If you have worked hard for years to place space between you and your toxic parent, facing the celebrations of Mother's Day or Father's Day feels incredibly counterfeit and yet alluring somehow. The commercials on TV or in print paint that glorious image of good parenting and...inside...we long for those images of healthy.

The voices in our heads want to start believing the calls to forgive and forget and we just want to join hands with our parent and enjoy the closeness of the day. We hear the messages of reconciliation and wonder if there is something wrong with us, that we have chosen to live our lives without our own parents.

The celebrations for motherhood surround us, but what about us, the kids who have bravely severed the ties with our toxic parents? Probably the toughest break up in the world is the break up with the person who gave birth to us, the people responsible for our very existence, a person with whom we share DNA. 

Is there a celebration for us on this day?

What about those among us who have made the almost-impossible choice to take ourselves, our children, and our spouses, and to create deliberate space from our parents of origin? We have had nights, years of anguish with ourselves, crying out for healing, for release from the toxic soup of our own parents... Unhealthy parenting might be the cruelest gift to give to one's own children.

On these days we are exquisitely aware of the breech.
We are aware that we have become the bad kid when we called it quits in the game of family-of-origin life dramas.  We are perfectly aware of the absence of a grandmother figure in the lives of our children. We are completely aware that someone somewhere is thinking ill of us and in how we have mistreated them by leaving their turmoil behind.

But we did it.
We did the thing that takes tremendous courage and personal will.
And today, as so many folks celebrate that unfathomable thing, the good and loving mother, we wonder how we can make this day our own.

Consider celebrating a mother figure.
Consider adopting a senior neighborhood woman.

Consider commemorating the women and men who have helped you to feel grounded and valuable and at peace.
Celebrate the family that you have created.

And remember to celebrate that bravest of people, that person who seeks out the light and the bright, holding close the personal plan of all that is healthy. That person who sacrifices what is comfortable to discover that which is worthy of celebrating. 
Celebrate yourself.
Do whatever your loving and healing heart desires.

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