The birthday I don't acknowledge
I come from a damaged family. It's generational, it's been going on longer than the USA has been a country, and it's not going to stop any time soon. Like so many families touched by mental illness, we can't seem to get along, nor can we be together at all. We're all damaged, even my perfect brother for whom nothing ever goes awry except male pattern baldness. My sister, who is 62 (I know, she is SO OLD) and my youngest brother who is 47, could sit next to each other on a bus and have no idea that they are siblings. They haven't had any contact in over 45 years. It's terribly sad. But it's necessesary to protect ourselves because the bad is very very bad.
It's sad that my mother spends her birthday alone. She did this to herself in a weird way, by refusing help and refusing to acknowledge that she's crazeeee. She decided that her daughters were a total pain in the ass early on and never failed to let us know how much she resented our existance. She used to say "If birth control pills were retroactive I'd be the first one on line" right to our faces. So pleasant. So crazy.
Growing up knowing that you were a mistake and unwanted is a terrible thing. It changes your life in ways that are impossible to get over. You can go to years and years of therapy, but the fact that your parents see you only as an error they made in the heat of the moment is painful to the max. I'm not angry about it. My father is dead, and my mother couldn't care less how I feel about anything, so what's the point of carrying all this anger. But I do carry sadness. I didn't have a normal family. I didn't have a feeling of being loved or cared about. I wasn't nourished mentally. I was rejected physically.
When I had children I vowed that I would never, not for one second, feel this way about my kids. Sure they drive me crazy at times, but they are so sure that I love them, and I tell them that every freaking day, even when I'm beyond furious. Especially then. I love my kids, but I don't always love their actions. We still hug and snuggle, and that's pretty unusual for 16 year old kids to want to do with their ancient mommy.
What I do regret most about my own mother is that my kids have never had the opportunity to have grandparents. My mother is way too toxic, and their other grandparents live abroad and don't travel. So they have nobody to look out for them, to buy they special cards, to attend grandparents days at school, to take them shopping for something special, and to sit with them when they feel poorly. They don't get grandparently advice. They have little knowledge of what it means to have an extended family.
That sucks. It totally and completely sucks, and every November 18th I think about how my own mother screwed up my kids lives without even knowing them. So it's no Happy Birthday from me. It's just another damn day. And it's cold. Stumble It! JBlog Me