09 December 2012

The lost art of letter writing

Conversations with my mom have become difficult, to say the least. It's kind of always been that way; active addiction has that effect on family relationships.

My relationship with my mom had been improving, until this summer when I quit a job where I was unappreciated and underpaid. Since then, it seems I can do nothing to please her (except take some shitty job waiting tables for less than minimum wage that really wouldn't even make me enough money to cover the expenses I'd incur to actually work that crappy job), and so conversations have been strained.

The differences in our political views, and more specifically her manner of expressing her disapproval of my beliefs, has reached a point where I have to say enough. When even a simple call to say "I love you, Mother. How are you?" turns into another opportunity for her to spew anger at me, it's time to try something new.

Thank you, Sunshine, for reminding me that I have options today.

I don't have to continue to allow her to behave that way every time we talk on the phone. I can write a letter and say "I love you, Mother, and just felt it was important to me to say that to you."

I don't have to continue to participate in that same old cycle of supposed to.

I can love my mother without having to put up with her unacceptable behaviour. Don't get me wrong, my Mom was a great Mother. She raised her children well, doing a fine job of parenting in spite of the shitty shit life threw at our family. Sometimes, though, my Mom is just human; and that's OK. It doesn't make her any less my Mother, and it doesn't negate all the great things she did for us as kids.

As humans, we don't always relate well to other people. As humans, we hold on to bitterness, disappointment, and resentment. As humans, we take out our frustrations, anger, and fears on those we are closest to. I think it is just part of the curse of being human.

However, I don't have to stay trapped in this vicious cycle of arguments with my Mom.

I can write a letter that says how important it is to me that she know I love her. I can write a letter that doesn't give her an opportunity to be disappointed in my beliefs or the way I live my life.

I can write a letter, and let her know I love her.

Now, where to buy some nice stationary?

13 comments:

  1. YAY for Sunshine!

    I LOVE this idea! Kudos to him for thinking of it, and kudos to you for doing it.

    Love you!

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    1. My Sunshine has his moments of brilliance.

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  2. There is so much kindness in this post, it makes me catch my breath. Thanks for writing this down here, Cindy. I'm figuring some stuff out in my own life (it involves a parent) and it is lovely to see something like this as a different view. I wish I lived closer so that I could soak up the rays that are Sunshine's too. <3 (ps. tell him thank you)

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    1. I did thank him for you. He looked kind of surprised that we actually got something positive and useful out of things he said.

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  3. This is wonderful. It allows you to maintain a relationship with your mama, while filtering out toxic crap that hurts. Bravo, Sunshine!

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  4. I love this so much.

    Go Sunshine.

    There is one important person in my life who might just be getting a letter soon...instead of a (painful) phone call.

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    1. I think that some days, I'd be lost without Sunshine. I'm glad his words of wisdom have helped someone else.

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    2. I think that sentiment goes both ways.

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  5. You are lovely. And you make me want...no...need to write a few letters to some certain people just to tell them I love them. <3

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    1. I love it when Sunshine gets it right like this! Also? I love you!

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  6. I love that Sunshine helped you remember this, that rocks! He is such an awesome support system. Letters can be such a gift at times, just like emails. Sometimes I have to do that (being careful to watch my tone isn't being taken out of context, ugh!) because I can go back and delete, correct, rewrite, and I can't do that with words. Plus, the best part - no interruptions! W00t W00t!

    Now that song, can't remember the title but I know, since you're an 80's/90's chick you know it, "We're only human, born to make mistakes" Kind of balladie, is going through my head. I hate that song. Thanks, Cindy LOL

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    1. Didn't The Human League sing thay fucking song? Now I have it stuck in mah head too. Thanks, Elsie ;-)

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