I dont recall the last time I purchased a card for mom. I usually print a pic, and make my own card that requires just a "Love Cathy" signature on the inside. No long, complicated verses of trust, love, devotion, adoration, cherished memories, etc.
I didnt make her a card this year for her birthday, husband was very sick and we spent time in the ER the day before we got together to celebrate her birthday. On the way I stopped at the local party store, I walked to the card section that said "For her" and I looked around to make sure nobody was near. I usually end up with a lump in my throat and have a few tears escape reading the "For her" cards. I picked one up, didnt see too much mumbo jumbo on the front, grabbed the envelope. Started to walk away, and stopped. I went to the other side and saw this card I liked, a sweet painted pic of a mother and daughter, opened it up, and realized this was the card. I put it back. Then grabbed it again, put it back, and grabbed again.
I forced myself to walk to the check out. Theres no escaping now, someone is standing in line behind me, I thought. I grabbed some blow pops candy and kept my eyes searching for things to read to distract me until it was my turn to pay.
I bought the card. I walked out, drove to my sisters house, and I signed my name. That was seriously painful, so painful I was sweating. Yeah, it was hot outside, but I wasnt really moving for about 20 minutes while driving with the air conditioning on! ha! I debated about giving her the card, but I didnt have an alternative to give her.
The card was given, I could feel my heart pounding. I took a pic of her reading the card, her facial expression was unusual. She got teary eyed. Now that wasnt so hard I thought to myself, or was it?
It was hard, and I'm still lamenting over this today. The card is racing through my mind, the picture of the mother and daughter still stuck in my mind.
I texted my daughter who is up in college, something was mentioned about my mom, and then I mentioned to her about the card I gave her. My daughter knows I dont give mom store bought cards and why. She said something like "Oh really" with surprise in her voice after I told her I gave mom a sappy mother/daughter card. I texted her a pic of the card, and told her this is the card I'd give my mom. Well, I did give this to my mom. But this is how I want to feel, and this is how I should feel when I give her this sort of card. I told my daughter this is how I feel for HER, so I know I CAN feel this way.
I feel cheated, and like I'm back in first grade and Sister Marceline Marie has caught me talking when I should be quiet . I feel guilt , like I've cheated my own mother as well. This is just a card but it has such a larger meaning and there is so much attached to this little card. The picture on the cover is worth a thousand words. Nobody has to explain the meaning, it's understood, its a universal feeling .
I was immediately drawn to the title of your blog...could it be? Someone expressing my feelings? YES!!! Then...oh, wow...I have never told anyone about the card for mom issue...SAME!! Then I continued to read what you have written...I am 48, and met my b.mother at 19. Had always searched the faces of women everywhere starting probably when I was 5 or 6. Longed for that mother who was affectionate and loving and sensitive and demonstrative...something I hungered for...among all the other things...
What I found was a horrible emotional and physical train wreck...weighing in at around 400 pounds, no teeth - she left those home, and needing a shave...me at all of 105 pounds and no physical resemblance whatsoever...ok, i seriously could get past that...but what I couldn't get past was the anger - misplaced towards me and my parents, her never accepting any responsibility and really not even wanting to know anything about me, even though she began to seriously stalk and harass me...welcome to adoptionville...I thought I was in some kind of altered reality/universe...and then began to really grieve...and experienced my first major depression 6 months after meeting her.
Here I am, 48 years old, and still grieving, to a certain extent. I still have my mother. She loves me, and I her, but that connection like you described...not quite there, no matter how much I wish it. And yes, the shame that comes with admitting this...
I can't even begin to tell you how much I appreciate you. And how blown away at how much of what you wrote I could have written. I actually had to tell myself to close my mouth!!!!
Again, thank you, and if I could just give you a big hug, I would...
Thanks Mara! If we feel the same way can you imagine how many adoptees go through this when buying cards, etc?ReplyDelete