The Farmer and I are on vacation. I would never want to leave you without something to read and therefore I'm offering you Stale Stories in my absense.
This is a story entitled "Swimming in the Transformation Soup". It originally published on April 14, 2008.
For the past year or so something has been amiss in my life. I haven't been able to put my finger on it but I've felt like I'm swimming upstream in what Sark calls Transformation Soup.
Last week's visit with The Mother and The Sister allowed me to finally see that my relationships have been put in a blender and turned on frappe', taking the past dynamics and chopping them into bits. The daughters are now the mother, and that's a terrible shift for someone who's aging and dealing with those issues. My own children seem to be equally unsettled under my continued nurturing attempts.
My sister and I find ourselves with adult children, and we're adrift on a sea of "not much to do" in the nurturing department. Years of worrying, wiping, organizing, cooking, dressing, pushing, teaching and all-around mothering are behind us. Well, all but the worrying part. Suddenly, after what seems like a lifetime of motherhood on-the-job training, just as we've worked out all the kinks - we're handed a pink slip! We find ourselves obsolete, experts without students. It's like losing your job but still having to go into the office everyday to sit in a chair and just observe. Our opinions are not needed (or wanted) as our children attempt to make a life by themselves, for themselves. And that's not a bad thing, they're using the lessons we've taught. The problem is that sometimes we're still trying to teach, long after the lessons have ended. It's exasperating for all parties involved.
My sister and I talked about this at length. I don't blame the kids for being annoyed at attempts at mothering at this point in time. Sensing the coming changes a couple of years ago I "adopted" a kid from a terribly dysfunctional family, fed him a steady diet of advice and chocolate brownies and got him into college and on his way. I certainly can't keep repeating that from now till the grave. Can you just see me out trolling for a kid who needs nurturing?
So, what's a mother to do? I'm sitting in a puddle of skills here.
My sister and I came up with the solution, almost at the same moment. We decided that the answer was to turn the nurturing around and to nurture ourselves. Now THAT'S certainly easier said than done.
As a young mother I never would have believed in my heart that I would find purpose in cleaning up after a sick child and driving a million miles to soccer games. I did. Now I just need to figure out how to do it for myself.
If you haven't read Sark before, give her books a look see They're colorful and get you to think about your life in a different way.
I seriously considered including a warning for young moms.....READ AT YOUR OWN RISK. Would you want to know what's coming down the road? Probably not.