We all have parents. Most of us idealized them at some point, and many people realized their parents were human at some point. The particular point of humanity, and all the associated flaws, is fairly challenging for me. I have a decent relationship with my father. Somehow I have managed to forgive him from some things he has done, and we have moved onward. I guess it was easy to forgive, because it was never directly related to me. It has also been easy because we look at the world in the same systematic way. I got my love of science from my dad.
My mother is a bigger challenge. There is nothing to forgive, simply different ways of looking at the world. Yesterday was mother’s day, and I found myself dreading calling. I was further turned off by the outpourings of Facebook and the indirect contest to see who could write the most heartwarming post about their mother. I saw friends commenting to other friends what great moms they were. All this serves to make me feel even more guilty that I am just not feeling so warm towards my mother. Guilt guilt guilt.
I imagine at this point, you’re trying to figure out what my mother did/does that is so frustrating. Its a lack of logical approach to life. She doesn’t think through things systematically. Its very hard for me to follow along with her train of thought and understand why she chooses to do certain things. She is incapable of explaining her thought process, which further complicates things. I find it especially frustrating because I want her to be happy, and from afar, I can see how she is preventing herself from being happy.
And none of this should matter. She is my mom and I appreciate the things she has done. I have been diligently thinking of ways to accept that my mother does things differently. I have been brainstorming ways to just skip along with her thought process without becoming crazy in my confusion. And someday hopefully I will succeed.
This ability to leave others to their own brand of logic is tricky to develop. There are certain people I have accepted that I cannot understand and I am ok with that. But not my mother. Maybe in my love for her, I am so focused on helping her I cannot just let her be herself. Whatever the reason, I need to love and let go.
Do you have any tips for reconciling your hopes for your loved ones with their illogical (to you) choices?