Not Everyone Is Happy On Mother’s Day

Yellow tulips Deutsch: Gelbe Tulpen

Yellow tulips Deutsch: Gelbe Tulpen (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Mother’s Day, like Father’s Day is not necessarily a happy holiday. Either holiday is miserable and sad for MANY people. My dad passed away nine years ago and I still head to the card section in June every single year. I miss him, it’s hard not to have a living or nice parent or a child on either of these holidays and people are often insensitive. So when I say Happy Mother’s Day, I include pet owners, aunts and uncles and women who love others.

For my Mother’s Day my daughter gave me a bunch of yellow tulips, a very sweet card and the stomach flu. I know she didn’t give me the flu on purpose but yesterday as I kept running for paper towels and bringing her buckets I figured I had a good shot at getting something. So far, my husband is safe. Our son is still in college and will be back this week, he sent a very loving card.

I took my mother to brunch this morning even though I felt horrible and could barely eat a bite. It’s not in me to cancel and I wasn’t feeling that bad in the morning. Mothers know, of course, and she asked me what was wrong, I just wasn’t hungry as I excused myself to the bathroom a couple of times. I didn’t want my mother to be alone on Mother’s day and the setting we had picked was beautiful. The food? So-so. The scrambled eggs were stone cold, (I admit it, I complained) and there were various breads, muffins, slices of turkey, pasta salad, fruit and chocolate and vanilla cake. I could eat none of it.

I dragged myself home in my car, not wasting time to get gas, which I sorely needed, headed quickly for the highway. I longed to put on my soft green v-neck  tee-shirt and crawl into bed. I e-mailed my husband to cancel the reservations (that I had made) at a local restaurant for my own Mother’s Day celebration. The truth of the matter was I felt so sick I didn’t want to go, my son was not yet home from college and there was no reason to force ourselves to go out because of the name of a day.

I’ve been in bed all day, my dinner consisted of an American cheese sandwich and a can of Diet Vanilla Coke. Mother’s Day can wait until I feel better and together. That’s the thing about Mother’s Day, it is a commercial holiday that I buy into every year for my mom because I want to acknowledge her, she deserves it and I don’t know how many more years we will have together.

Apparently, after I left, she was home alone when a mutual friend called her and she was sobbing and feeling “very sorry for herself.” You can’t make people happy all the time, no matter what; Mom missed my dad, she felt very alone and she is getting older. She made a remark about “how many more years would she still be my mother?” which concerned me but it’s natural too; she’s a young 85. For that reason alone, I wanted to be with her today.

I can’t solve all her problems, like she can’t solve all of mine. I could just attempt to make her morning a bit nicer, a little less lonely, even when I wanted to stay in bed. I’m saying good-night to Mother’s Day by sitting on the couch with my hubby, sipping on flat Coke with crushed ice and munching quite happily on ginger snaps watching the Survivor Finale.

Sorry, Whitney, I Have No Tears Left

Whitney Houston  Central Park, NYC  September ...

Whitney Houston Central Park, NYC September 1, 2009 (Photo credit: asterix611)

Sure, I gasped when I read the headlines last night that Whitney Houston, an incredibly talented singer had died. I gasped in shock for the unexpected news but after that, I didn’t cry. I couldn’t, I had nothing to cry about. So, instead of being sad, I felt incredibly MAD. Mad like, is anyone going to LEARN something about drugs and alcohol (allegedly) and using and abusing? How many more people have to die before someone gets it and says “You know, might not be such a smart idea to party all the time.” WHAT DON’T YOU UNDERSTAND?

We have lost, NO, we have not lost them, they lost themselves to drugs and alcohol (yeah, yeah, allegedly). Do I really need to name them? Fine, Michael Jackson, Amy Winehouse. Go back in time: Janis Joplin, Jimmy Hendrix, and I am just listing a few examples from hundreds.  Such amazing talent from so many people gone, because they wasted their lives partying. I know addiction is an illness and it’s hard to beat but there are places to go to and programs to attend if you really, really want to stop and change.

Where was her family? Dionne Warwick, wasn’t she her aunt? Did Whitney have a mom named Cissy? I could be wrong. Cousins? Best friends? Old, clean, boyfriends and girlfriends? WHERE THE HELL WERE ALL OF YOU? I know it’s not your fault, it’s Whitney’s. Whitney, you had so many YEARS to try and get sober and clean. Did you once think of your daughter. My G-d, how selfish is that? Does the word “intervention” sound familiar to any of you?

I’m just frustrated with this culture you “stars” live in and I know it is not limited to celebrities. Are we glorifying these singers/actors/stars with our moments of silence and our adoration? Well, now we must buy ” The Best Of…….”They killed themselves, willingly or not, for a long time using drugs and alcohols and pills and whatever else was printed on their personal menus. Enough is enough. They are not heroes to me. They are poor, lost souls who had everything and lost it for fame.

On a more personal note: Lindsey Lohan: I’m still watching YOU.

The Weather's Effect on My Mood

Dedicated to all the people who have SAD

gloomy weather

When I wake up in the morning the first thing I do is look to the upper left of our bedroom where we have a big, unadorned window. There, in an instant, I can automatically see what the weather is and it makes a HUGE difference to me. If it is dark gray (with or without a howling wind, cold or not cold), I just want to stay in bed and not crawl out from under the deliciously warm and soft, flowered blankets. If I have to go out I will force myself but it will be with much grumbling and I don’t feel happy. When the sky is bright and a robin’s blue and sunny, I automatically smile. I prefer warm weather but even if it is cold out and the sun is winking at me I can bundle up and go out. I can handle that better than dark, depressing skies. My mood is definitely influenced by the weather and I could NEVER live in a climate where it is dark, gray, cool and drizzling most months out of the year. I would be miserable and admire people who can do that and live happily. I would not be able to; kudos to those of you who can.

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It Matters (Carry On Tuesday – After All, Tomorrow Is Another Day)

Shandi-lee X {pieces I}

Image by Shandi-lee via Flickr

After three days of cold, grim weather and not wanting to get out of the comfort of my bed, today I saw the first suggestion of sunshine, still hidden behind the trees. It was a hint, a mere lighting of the sky but it gave me hope. I stood by the window unclothed until I saw lines from the white venetian blinds stripe my body as if I was a lioness; I threw back my head and laughed with delight. I marched straight for the shower, feeling empowered just by the light of day, not held captive anymore by the banal, grey, humorless me.

I dressed quickly, as if I had a purpose, and rounded my dog up, leashed her and took her outside for a walk. “Come, girl,” I said, “I know, it’s a surprise for me too.” She chose the route and I breathed in deeply for that first attack of the fresh, cold, crisp air, like the first bite of a fall Macintosh apple. We passed a tree that had small, round inedible, red berries on it and I stood there for a few moments looking at them through different angles of my cold hands through the frail winter branches against an intensely rich blue sky.

I thought of what I had been through the last year and the first thought that entered my mind was that “it matters.” People don’t truly understand that when you promise something, and you give people your word, they believe you. They may never bring it up to you again,  but, they do remember. It’s not some hazy questionable memory either, it’s with alarming clarity. “You must come for dinner” people told us when we had no place to live but a single hotel room, “I will call you this week” they said soothingly as I sobbed on the phone, feeling utterly helpless, my husband just having had surgery, believing them.  They never called, they never came through on their empty promises or the promises they made at the time, apparently off the cuff. Next time, busy people, try to think it through because for people who feel homeless or displaced, we cling to the thought of an offer of a home-cooked meal, an offer from your heart when we feel we have nothing left.

“We’ll miss you, we love you” said the young replacement friends in the temporary home and of course, I am too gullible. I am too sensitive and too thoughtful and I take things too seriously. I believe people and even at my old age, I still have not learned that most people, the majority of people say things that they do not mean. Even one of my best friends knew I was in trouble and yet she did what most people would do and pushed me off into a corner until she had more time on her hands. I know my standards are high, too high, but I could not do that and sleep well at night; actually I could not sleep at all. Even when I was crying out for help albeit weakly, people acknowledged it and said “after all, tomorrow is another day” and turned their heads away.

Be careful of your words, be careful of your intentions, be kind to one another. Don’t offer things unless it is with a true heart  especially if they are vulnerable and lost unless you KNOW you can carry through. We have all felt lonely and sad and desperate one time or another. Remember that feeling when you see someone suffering like a child gripping her mother’s hand in fear. Remember too, that it could be you someday, that it could be you.

Feeling Purple by Peter (9 1/2)

Purple

Image via Wikipedia

I feel purple today, dark purple. I’m cranky and in a bad mood. I’m being bothered by my stupid family and everyone is talking all around me.  I want to kick my heels into walls and leave black marks. I want to take my fists and punch lots of holes in the walls and it wouldn’t even hurt me; I wouldn’t feel a thing but whatever I touched would be in really big trouble. I want to do it so badly, maybe I will.

I want to take my chicken noodle soup with smashed up crackers and toss it on the rug and not feel sorry that I did it at all; I would let my dog eat it all up because my dog is the only person I like. I hate everyone. “Screw you, you idiot” I would scream over and over and no one would tell me that it was bad language. After that I would laugh and laugh and not care about anything. I would eat whipped cream straight from the can right into my mouth, as much as I wanted. After that I would have ice cream sandwiches, maybe three of them. Or four.

Everybody is mean and stupid and a poop-head and I would tell them but if my mom heard she would give me a time-out. As if I cared. I would just PLAY with my dinosaurs and have fun anyway. Like when mom and dad took away dessert from my sister and me for three days and we pretended to care a lot but we had a secret pact, we didn’t even care but THEY thought we did, it was awesome. Someday if I become a dad, I will let my kids do whatever they want and I won’t be mean like my parents are cuz I will be cool and not strict. Signed, ME.

By Peter, AGE 9 (and a half)

Aren’t We All Damaged In Some Way?

it gets better

I’m fuming and furious about a recent post that mentioned me and another friend. For those of you who have read my post ” I Am A Tree” you know I’ve been working hard to keep my roots in tack, to play with the wind instead of fighting it, to learn to swim with the tide instead of against it. It’s not an easy job for anyone. Lately, however, I feel bad vibes spinning around in circles over my head. I will not let them land, I am fighting them, I refuse to drown myself for other people’s mentally ill and emotionally deprived lives. I have asked this person to get help many times. I’ve received suicide notes that bring me to tears, I have contacted professionals on how to handle the situation. I can only do the best I can do in any given moment; that’s true for all of us. However, I will not be talked about by other members when I am right here, present, front and center.

I don’t need to name names like other people did. I will not stoop so low. I also will not make idle threats, again and again, about leaving Facebook or blogs, or certain groups, and then reappearing after a day or two. I have tried to help people many, many times but I am not a doctor, a psychiatrist or a judge. I am a friend who wants to be nice to others, and I don’t want to be taken advantage of nor do I want any nice thing I may have done turned into a passive-aggressive diatribe.

Let’s face it, it’s a bad time of year for EVERYONE. I can tell you my dad died New Year’s Eve or whine about my childhood and not being understood but I am a 55-year-old woman who is now responsible for her own actions. I love my family, I love my friends, but I am not responsible for their actions.

I don’t like others speaking about me, as if I were not alive or present. Do I have problems? Yes, WHO DOESN’T?  We’ve had a horrid year but you don’t see me wallowing in it. ALL OF US HAVE PROBLEMS, IT’S CALLED BEING A GROWN UP. Life moves on, and I with it. If someone needs help, desperately needs help than they should do what they can to get it. If it means being an in patient, so be it, you would be safe there and not be able to hurt others or yourself. You need to take a role in your recovery especially when you have made your feelings clear about how you feel about your demise.

I am not a mean person, I try to be kind, I try to be a good person. I have many flaws but I am losing patience and respect. Whoever needs help, please find it, there is always a way if you try hard enough and having a spouse that you are HONEST with makes it even easier. Take a break from being on-line and concentrate on GETTING better. Everyone would welcome you back. Enough is enough. It takes a lot to make me fume, but I am at that point now. Thank you to another new friend who warned me about the posting, I sincerely appreciate it. (or am I not allowed to even say this?)

Get help, intense, emotional help. You are a talented person, you just have lost your way. You will get better, I am sure, and we all care. Don’t lose sight of the GOOD you do have in your life. Friendships last through many ups and downs, they are not that fragile, please get the help you need. I will be here with cheesecake and toast with butter and honey and cheddar cheese.

*This was written a couple of days ago, after the first blog. I decided not to post it. Now after the addendum, you wanted comments. Here they are. I care a lot but you have crossed the line. Please get HELP.

The Best and Worst Parts of the Holiday Season

English: A cinnamon roll with glaze

This is a hard post to write if anyone, like me, has lost a loved one. My dad died eleven years ago on New Year’s Eve. The day before my parents’ wedding anniversary on January 1st. Not a day goes by that I don’t think of my dad in some way or another. He loved the holidays, he was our Christmas Santa, starting the celebration off with his special Christmas bell. He got so excited at the thought of getting and giving presents. Every Christmas, he would buy me a candle. It was a tradition.

When he was well and healthy and happy he could eat a huge amount without ever getting full and food was very important in his life (now you know where I get it from). My dad was playful and child-like, just the way I am and our two personalities were so very similar. I lost a part of myself when he died, the dynamics of our family are so different now; it took me years to adjust to it.

I still loved the holidays when my children were young and we could focus on them and see their sheer joy and excitement. But now, with children who are 17 and 19, there really isn’t that much fun left in it for me. We do get together every year on Christmas, we have the same fun, traditional meal of scrambled eggs and bacon, and Pillsbury cinnamon rolls with icing for dessert, but of course, I miss my Dad and my mom dearly misses her husband.

The memories are nice to have and I try to appreciate them, but during this time of year it’s hard to focus on that. I still love getting together at my mother’s house with my sister and her family. To see the four cousins together is magical at any age, now ages 21,  19 and a half, 19 and 17. With very little money this year, I’m afraid we had to be Scrooge and severely limit presents. What remains however, is still the love in our hearts and the piping hot aroma of the cinnamon buns’ sweet vanilla icing, but Santa’s Christmas bell has been silenced forever.

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Like We Used To

mother and son

Image by 'PixelPlacebo' via Flickr

It’s a different page in the book, the old chapter ended abruptly. Now, there’s a new chapter that really doesn’t seem to fit in with the rest. But, since I have no choice but to continue reading, whether I want to or not, I will learn something in the end. I’m not sure if I will like the ending or if I will hate it but it is not an ending that I get to write. Not anymore. It’s no longer my story. I’m so low on energy today with the temperature and the humidity so high it hurts to breathe and I am feeling daggers of chest pain. Tears are sliding down my cheeks but I don’t bother to wipe them away; it’s all out of my control. I wish I could hide away somewhere, or go on vacation alone and relearn who I am.

It would be nice to be able to talk to my eighteen and a half-year old son with the same ease, joy, warmth and humor that we used to have. Now, he is readying himself for camp and college and independence; I understand that but still, sometimes what he does or says sting. I am sure he will come back, at least that’s what other parents of older children have told me. I’m his mother, I will wait. New words entered our vocabulary last year, things like beer pong and prom, girlfriend, college, admissions and honor programs. Maybe there is still a little kid inside him also trying to deal with changes too. Maybe he doesn’t know how he’s acting or how different he seems. It’s a little rocky in the beginning when things change so dramatically but eventually we all learn to adjust to everything. The ability to adjust is what keeps people alive; we have no other option but to adapt.

I have pains in my chest; I feel weak and sad and  fragile and everything in my body hurts from Fibromyalgia and my heart hurts too. My body, is stiff and unyielding. I’m tired of being tired and I feel everything and nothing. Today, nothing trumps everything. There were many things that used to make me happy. More importantly, I used to make myself feel happy but I don’t anymore. Does the true essence of my self still exist if I can’t feel it?

my day by sherry

Hopscotch

Image via Wikipedia

my dday waas verry diffrent from yesssterdat, funnyhow ur day cann be really bad andd scary and u  want to  just cry an cry. thaats what i felt like   today. mommy and pops were all tryin  to  preetend to b hapy but i culd know thaat its was just becaaause  i was stil their. i felt that in my bakk as i walked out the dorr so i culd catch the lellow school bus. my hair waz in 2 long braidss, my feet werr flyin in my new red lite up ssneakers witch ar so ammasing!!! andd i had a baloni and merican cheese sandwitch in my hello kitty! lunch boxx.i dont know whats goin on really but i know it feels kinda wrong and badand sad. i hav a brover who is just makin me feel jumpy and sad and mad andd that shouldnt happen. isnt family suppo two be nice tto family? no iguess thats not just so for some peepel, everyone is different i know.my teacherr told me that. i was sitting on the playground when  jessie came over to me and u know what, she didn’t do anythin but sit right down next to me and that was relly good. it was plenty, she asked me to play wit her like jump rop or hopsscotch or use   chawk but i didnt want to play or jump rope or hoppscotch.i just wanted someone to know who i wasss and what i was feeling like and jessie was all quiet and she put her arm around my neck and then we both smiled. smiled like we had won the lottery like on tvee or something cuz that is just how it felt. we both felt happy for no reason, well, no special reason at all. after that we held hands an went bakk incide. me and jess, we are best freinds now.

wen i gott home my brooter  said some  baad words and slamme the door an every ones voics were sso loud and screamin. my brother sam, i am, is 14 and hes in some kiind of badd truble, somes ttimes gronups dont listenn enuf but i no something was wronng and when i came baaak from skool, i was not  so hapy anymore andd at leaast i knew tht tmmrrow woud be sccool again  and i woud ssee Jessie aand she wood still be my bestest friendd. so i no thaats  really good an i donnt hav to say a word if i don’nt wan to.