Wrath of Virginia


Welcome to my blog!

For the month of June, I will be posting Definition.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The first week is defining moments.

de·fin·ing mo·ment

noun
plural noun: defining moments
          an event that typifies or determines all subsequently related occurrences.

DAY 3- Wrath of Virginia

My mother was a loving, giving, generous soul as long as you weren’t one of her children.

Everyone loved my mother. They would sing praises about Aunt Virginia,  mention her operatic voice and her wonderful talents, and make me feel like I was the worst daughter in the entire history of female children.

Don’t get me wrong,  I loved my mom. I am a lot like her in many ways. Personality wise,  I am the most like her between myself and my two sisters.

My mother had strict German upbringing and was not outwardly affectionate towards her children. We were expected to straighten up, fly right, and act like mini adults. She ruled with an iron hand and my siblings and I  know well the wrath of Virginia.

I hate to admit this but here goes.  I  let my mom control my life until I was 30! IT wasn’t until I had kids of my own that I learned to stand up for myself as an adult, and realize that I wasn’t going to go straight to hell if I got the wrath of Virginia.

Oh, my mother had a mean temper. She let you know in no uncertain terms when she was not pleased. I knew that well as  I often displeased her. Being the youngest of five, I learned at an early age that it was easier to ask forgiveness than it was for permission. Yes, I got into trouble a lot. I wouldn’t wish me as a child on anyone!

One day when my firstborn child was about six months old,  she called and said we needed to come over because my brother was coming in from out of town. Both of my brothers lived out of state and the oldest seldom ever came home.

Well, I couldn’t.  My daughter was sick and I wasn’t about to drag her out in the weather and told her NO.  You’d have thought I had denied my Christian upbringing.

“No? What do you mean NO?”

“I can’t mom. Sarah is sick. IF I go anywhere, it’s going to be to the emergency room. Give my regards to everyone.” 

I cut the call off as quickly as I could, I knew. . .  I mean I KNEW that I was in deep.  I said no to mom. By the way, yes there was hell to pay.

Somewhere though in caring for my sick infant child, juggling phone calls from my sister,  my mother my sister again, my other sister, and a final hateful message from my mother I realized that saying no to mom wasn’t the worst thing I could do.

Things were beginning to click.

My mother was an expert in emotional blackmail. She was expert in creating drama that you HAD to do it her way. Bless her heart,  if she hadn’t been so manipulative,  I think we could have had a better relationship.

She and my father doted on their grandchildren, however.  My sibs and I were like HUH? scratching our heads at the outpouring of affection that wasn’t allowed us.

Virginia was a strongwilled dominant woman. About that operatic voice –  she could have been an opera singer but her father wouldn’t allow it –  keep in mind this was pre-world war II days. She often sang in church and especially at Christmas and Easter.  She sang Ave Maria, Emmanuelle, Jerusalem, O Holy Night, and many other traditional hymns.

In all honesty, I was the rebellious one.  Whatever she liked, I rebelled against it. Can I let you in on a secret?  I miss her.  I wish that we had had a better relationship.

It took a while from that first time of saying no to her, like years, but eventually, she came to terms with the idea that I wasn’t going to jump every time she asked me to.  That first time though was a defining moment.  It was the one that broke the barrier. It was part of learning to become who I am as a fully functional, not dependent adult.

Our family dynamics are weird,  even worse since her passing.  My siblings each have their own issues with mom,  but in the end, we let go of them because she was MOM and she was always there.  She would go to bat for you when no one else would but you better toe the line at home.

Anyway, leave a comment.  Is your Mom living, deceased?  Did/do you have a good relation, bad or somewhere in between?

Write on my friends, write on!

Going for the Obvious


Welcome to my blog!

 

For the month of June, I will be posting Definition.  You may learn more about me than you ever wanted to know!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The first week is defining moments.

de·fin·ing mo·ment

noun
plural noun: defining moments
          an event that typifies or determines all subsequently related occurrences.

DAY 2 – Birth of my Children

Hence the blog title –  going for the obvious.

For most of the women I know,  once they have given birth to a child, or even adopted parents, their lives have forever been changed.

I no longer was a reckless daredevil doing ridiculously stupid things for fun.  My leadfoot eased up. I thought in terms of my kids, not me.

Unless you’ve experienced it,  it’s hard to describe how you could possibly love that squalling little person with scrunched eyes, no hair, and no teeth.

From the moment of birth I became insignificant and it became all about the children.  Yes, I was one of those moms who neglected myself but really, I don’t see how anyone doesn’t. Aside from the physical exhaustion of raising children, from the moment they let me hold my babies something changed inside me.  I would die for these kids.  I would kill anyone who ever tried to harm them.  I would move heaven and earth on their behalf or die trying.

Talk about a protective mama bear,  that was me.  I still am to some degree but they are grown now. I’m still willing to go to jail if anyone tries to hurt them.

I’ve grown in ways that I can’t even explain by having to become responsible for two tiny people that in the beginning were completely dependent upon me. I”m sorry but animals are not the same. Yes, we still love them unconditionally,  but it’s nowhere close to your children.

Yes, it’s a cliche thing but I’m willing to be that the vast majority of women would say the same thing –   you’re never the same after having a child. I’d say it changes us for the good as well.

Anyway, leave a comment if you’re a mom and you feel the same way or are expecting and anxious about how your life is going to change. OH and BTW, dad’s are forever transformed as well but since I’m not the dad, . . . can’t tell you exactly how that feels.

Write on my friends, write on!

Bad Mom!


I have two teenage daughters, one whose personality is similar to mine and one whose personality is similar to my husband.  When they were younger I used to say a mini me and  a mini he.  That doesn’t work anymore, as they are both taller than me now.  I won’t even begin to go into how unfair that is!

My girls have been off school for Spring Break since last Thursday.  It has been a disruption to my already disrupted habits!  Don’t get me wrong I love my kids, I do!  It’s just that I had envisioned their teen years to be more self-sufficient.  I only have my own teen years to compare it to, and thank God they aren’t that much like me!

I planned on them being self-sufficient,  they’re not.  I planned on them being somewhat independent by now, they’re not.  I planned on them preferring to be with their friends instead of hanging out with their uncool mom, they don’t.

Sometimes they seem more helpless than they were at 2.  I know the “fits” are on par to that age.  Independence? HA!  I guess that’s what I get for being an overprotective helicopter mom when they were small.  Yes, I admit it I’ve been overprotective in many ways.  I wanted to make sure no one abused my babies the way I was abused as a child.  I wanted to make sure they were kept safe from harm.

The first time my oldest daughter got a cut, she was maybe six months old.  I was on the phone with my mother when she crawled over by the air conditioner vent in the floor.  she ran her little finger under the edge of the metal vent; and cut herself.  She didn’t cry, but I noticed blood on my tile floor.  Then realized she was looking at her little finger.  I practically screamed into the phone at my mother – “oh my God she’s bleeding!”.  To which my mother replied, “Well for heaven’s sakes,  what did you expect to come out, grape Kool-Aid?”

I know, it seems silly now.

I rarely left them with babysitters, I didn’t trust enough.  When I worked full-time and took them to daycare, I asked a gazillion questions, called at odd hours in the day.  I was a pest, I know but these were my precious babies!  It was a very good day for my mental well-being and that of the daycare staff when I retired from government service to be a full-time stay at home mother. The only drawback was that it fostered my hovering overprotectiveness.

I arranged playdates with safe families.  I took them to the parks, to Grant’s Farm, to the Zoo, and many other outings.  Now they expect it and I get complaining if it involves a train.  In St. Louis, we’ve visited the Museum of Transportation many times. It mostly consists of trains and the girls have developed an aversion to trains.  Yes, sometimes we go there just because I know they are cringing.  Yes, I know, bad mom!  Ever heard the old saying “If mama ain’t happy ain’t nobody happy?”  Don’t poke mama bear, she has claws.

Instead of my children going to their friend’s houses, their friends come to ours.  On one hand, it’s nice to know that my house is considered the cool house, but teenage girls can eat you out of the home almost as quickly as teenage boys.

Don’t agree?  Consider this: typical teenage boy gathering is 4 to five boys; typical girl gathering involves up to twelve girl max; more if you allow it but my limit is twelve!  Even if they are “dieting” you have more mouths to feed, and frankly most teenagers aren’t that hung up on calories yet.

It’s the same principle as the group bathroom break.  Ever hear a dude ask his friends “I’ve got to go to the bathroom, who’s got to go?”  No, and if he’s smart he never will!

When I was a teen I was very independent.  I did my chores, which were much greater than I require of my girls.  (NO ,I didn’t walk 5 miles to school uphill both ways in the blinding snow, it was only 1 mile) We didn’t have microwaves, we didn’t have a dishwasher, and we didn’t have air conditioning.  Open windows meant more dust on everything.  I can’t even get them to push the vacuum, much less use a feather duster! Yesterday when they were home, my oldest daughter complained that I went to my room to avoid them in, using her whiny voice.

I was changing over the winter clothes for spring and summer wear!  I had asked them both to do the same with their own clothes, a request that was ignored.  Oh well, those long sleeve shirts will be pretty hot in a few weeks, maybe they’ll do it then.

My husband pointed out after a frustrating episode of them not doing their simple chores that it was my fault.  Big mistake buster – not making any ponts right now! He stated that it is my fault because, although I get frustrated with them, I do it for them.  Guilty as charged, but it doesnt’ really help to point that out right now!  I went three days without them doing their chores and leaving it for them to do.  I couldn’t stand it any longer, and I did it!  Come on, three days worth of dirty dishes on counter top?  I had nowhere to prepare dinner, it had to be done.

Of course now I’m the bad mom again because I’ve taken away privileges.  Too bad, because Uber Nazi writing muse has a sister called Uber Nazi drill sergeant mom!  She’s lean, mean and unmercifully obsessed with clean!

I have a little over a year to  make certain that the oldest is ready to be on her own, as she will be heading off to college.  She’s got a long way to go.  She asked me yesterday how often the maid service changes your bedding in college.  I nearly spewed my coffee on the computer screen.  I’m not sure how things were at other colleges, but the one I attended didn’t provide maid services or laundry services.  It was all up to the students to care for their things.

I never got any instruction manual when they were babies and I was too protective.  I haven’t received any updated manuals now that they are teens, and I’m trying to encourage them, strongly suggest, and yes even push them to becoming self-sufficient responsible people.  It’s my job, it’s what I do, be the mom.  Good mom, bad mom, unappreciated mom, and even the comforting mom.  It’s a 24 hour a day/7 day a week/ 365 days a year job.  It tries my patience as nothing else can, yet provides the biggest rewards in life.

Even though we’re having a rough patch right now, I”ve got great kids.  They aren’t taking drugs, breaking laws, or getting into fights.  They are both smart and get good grades in school.  Good thing too because we’re really hoping for a scholarship!

In my current state of temporary disability, they’ve been less than helpful.  I guess that’s the root of my frustrations.  The fact that I’m not able to do the things that need to be done, and the fact that they don’t see the need to pitch in and get them done.  Meanwhile, it does nothing for my current mental state which is a mixture of self-pity, obsessing over the things I am unable to do, and my over achievers nature.

I don’t make a good patient.  It’s not life threatening, just restricted mobility for a short period of time while my injury heals.  I’m dealing with it, just not well!  It’s against the nature of being a  mom to  remain inactive. My dad used to say to my mom that she had springs in her butt!  It’s true, a mother rarely lounges around letting others wait on her.

My girls go back to school tomorrow.  Is it bad that I’m rejoicing?  It will be nice to get almost back to my daily routine. Well, except for not being able to go downstairs to do the laundry, and other household chores that involve kneeling, bending or even walking.

OK, I confess I really missed my quiet time to write.  I often have the music turned up, or the tv on for background noise, but it’s not the same as having actual conversations going on in the same room.  Especially when they are directed towards you. I put my laptop aside, and gave them my attention, but my heart was with Zane and Isabelle in the highlands.

Bad mom!