And THAT is the name of THAT tune February 16, 2011Posted by Toy Lady in just general griping, Living Out Loud, mirth & woe, Musings.
Tags: Just call me Little Aretha
I’m going to come clean here.
I’ve been kind of having a bit of a rough time the past few months. Perhaps it’s . . .like a Mid-Life Blarg.
The truth is that my mother hasn’t really been speaking to me since, um, Thanksgiving? I had finally objected to what I felt was a years-long barrage of unwarranted criticism from the family in general, and from my parents in particular.
It was stupid, truly. Isn’t it always?
See, I had previously made a grape pie, and everyone assured me it was “delicious” – then, the following year, it turns out that, well, maybe not so much. They didn’t enjoy it as much as they said they did.
Ultimately, I ended up not joining the family for Thanksgiving.
It wasn’t about the pie. It really wasn’t. It was more about my doing my best to please . . . and its just never being good enough. About people who can’t even be honest about the stupidest things. About being where I don’t feel truly welcome. Where I’m treated like. . . a rebellious, slightly retarded child.
I’m forty-(mumblemumble) years old. I’ve been supporting myself, in one way or another, since, well, since I was a teenager. I put myself through college (dean’s list every semester, thank you very much) while caring for a toddler, raised a child virtually alone, and am a homeowner and run a law office. (And I have a husband and a dog who both dote on me.) So why do I knock myself out for, at best, a grudgingly insincere pat on the head? Really, who needs that?
So the weeks passed, then the months. There was an invitation for Christmas day (we had already made plans) then a brisk (brusque? terse?) thank-you e-mail after the holidays, and that’s about it.
I’m not going to lie – it’s been hard. I’ve wavered between self-pitying hurt feelings (sob!) and anger (well, screw THEM then!) until I’ve essentially decided to ignore the whole situation. I’ve got a husband and a son who love me (and a dog and a cat) and that I can be myself with, and who will be honest with me. (Except, maybe, the cat – you never know with her!)
Then we had a bit of a, well, an incident while The Boy was home (with The Girl). (No, The Girl was not in any way involved.)
It was stupid, really. I asked him to clean up the sinkful of dishes that had somehow appeared while Peeps and I were at the supermarket.
The Boy hates washing dishes. He informed me of this fact at great volume, and with rather, um, colorful language.
Clearly, there’s more to this than a sinkful of dishes. Obviously. I just wish I knew what it was.
So here I am, parents not speaking to me on the one hand, and my son currently not speaking to me on the other. And here I am, right in the middle of a big, fat, hate sandwich.
And I’ve been conditioned to believe that when something like this happens – anything, really – it’s probably my fault. It’s always my fault. Doesn’t matter what it is – if people are angry, it’s because of me and something I did, something I said, some sidelong look I gave someone – something. (You know how, on House, it’s never lupus? Well it’s like that – it’s always me.)
And I spent a good amount of time hating myself – first for screwing everything up – as usual! – then, for reflexively taking all the blame.
Because you know what? THIS IS NOT MY FAULT.
And maybe, just maybe, if I start treating myself with a little more respect, my family might eventually start to get it too. Could happen.