reality and martyrdom

Wednesday evening I went to my mother’s house to give her the shot she needs once a week. It is supposed to help her chemotherapy racked body produce more red blood cells. It seems to be working so I guess we continue with it until it’s not. Her next CT scan is coming up and I’m very nervous about it for some reason. She was talking about traveling, to Reno with a friend and to Hawaii with me and my girlies. I said “Don’t plan your trips around me Mom. I have one to get off to college and you never know how the vacation time will be going.” She told me she wanted us to go with her and my heart broke a bit as I wondered if she’d even be here when the hoped for time arrived. I wanted to scream at her for making plans she can’t promise to stick to. How like a small child is that?

Then this morning I get online and only have time to read Lightfeather’s blog. The “Martyr” seemed to fit my life. Geez. I spent my daughter’s childhoods consciously doing everything different than my mother did. On Wednesday she said “I most certainly did NOT do that!” as if I couldn’t possibly remember anything from my own childhood. My aunt even looked at her funny when she said it. She is still playing the martyr after all these years, after all this sickness and dying, after everything that’s happened.

When I listen to my mother and then my husband tell me the same things…that I’m just not remembering it right…or a myriad of other statements they make, I wonder how on earth did I get here…right where I am now…in one freakin’ piece? I realize we all have our own reality. We all perceive things and events in different ways. It’s human nature. It’s normal. It’s a coping skill. That said, I wonder quite often how did my reality get to be so different from my mom’s? We lived in the same place at the same time and while our ages were as different as our roles were, it intrigues me a great deal to know why our memories are so diverse…so completely opposite. To this day my mother swears she never beat me once. Never mind that she’s told me the stories of the beatings at a few varied times through my life. She denies it almost all the time. I’ve come to view it kind of like Michael Jackson. If he ever admitted he is a sicko child molester, it’d probably kill him. I think it’s that way with my mom too. In the face of what she is dealing with now, it probably would kill her to leave the land of her denial. There is a quote I heard on a t.v. show my husband likes to watch that I just love. It symbolizes this conundrum perfectly to me.

“I reject your reality and substitute my own!”

4 responses to this post.

  1. Some people live their lives floating down the River DeNial. I was never sure why. You hit the nail on the head. Because it would kill them not to.

    I love you!


  2. Mythbusters…love that show.

    What you need to ask yourself is…

    What is the MOST important thing you can think of…which thing MUST happen in order for you to go on with your life… hearing your mother admit what she did in the past, or spending some quality time with her now, before she’s gone.

    Sometimes life really is a trade off, and we have to make some difficult decisions. It’s not necessarily fair, but, that’s the way it goes sometimes. Her refusal to acknowledge what she did has little, if anything, to do with you, and probably a whole lot to do with doing what she must in order to be able to live with the knowledge of what she did. That doesn’t make it right, it just makes it the way it is. I’ve been there with my mom, and I decided it’s her cross to bear, not mine. I know the truth, and that’s what’s important to me. The answer’s not the same for everyone, but you really do need to figure out for yourself what YOU need.


  3. Traci,
    Thanks for your comment on my blog. It’s good to know I am not alone with my weird habits.

    Denial….hum….maybe she is trying to protect your relationship with her by not admiting her wrong doings…don’t know and I am certainly no expert.


  4. your spirit is honest, and that is the most important thing to remember. you know in your heart what is true. that makes you beautiful.


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