Hey all you lovely people. This is a deep and personal piece from me today, but I feel I need to share to ease the inward emotions and turmoil. You know sometimes, despite all the best intentions and inner work and self care, life has some lessons to teach you that you’re not necessarily ready for.
Last week was one of those weeks. My super supportive and enduring mum is 81 years old next month. For some time now she’s been suffering the effects of dementia, Alzheimer’s and vascular dementia. Over the last few weeks my dad, himself 82, has seen a deterioration in her, and last week he was concerned enough to start asking for more help.
Having to face their mortality this last week has been a lesson to me, a lesson in my own feelings towards life, and towards death. I am hoping that the medical assistance she’s been getting for a few days will alleviate some of the recent problems, infection can after all play games with the mind, especially of the elderly. However, I do have to accept that at 80 years old she is not going to live forever in this world and what does that mean for me?
Anyone who knows me, knows that I have mixed feelings about my mum. Society and association she had when I was a child, meant she did certain things she went on to regret, namely disciplining me physically and my being left as a toddler to cry myself to sleep at night. This has caused me feelings of resentment over the years. I’ve never denied her motherly love for me, or my daughterly love for her, she has just been super supportive of everything I’ve ever done, but I did feel hurt for those early years, I have to admit it.
However, a few months ago I was loaned a fabulous book You Can Heal Your Life by the late Louise Hay. In this she talked about forgiveness and how important it is to forgive those who hurt us. She talked about how children choose the parents they will born to, and how if you feel your parents did wrong by you, then you need to seek the lesson that taught you and feel forgiveness in your heart. Well, do you know what I did when I first read that? I shut the book! I shut the book, and thought ‘no, nope, I am not accepting that’. I didn’t even realise just how strong that resentment was until that moment. This idea that my soul had chosen to come and be hurt in ways that still affected me so deeply? No, I wasn’t accepting that.
So I closed the book and never planned on completing it, I didn’t think it was right for me. Over the course of the next few days those words and some other wise words I was listening too and ready in my self-help, self care journey, made me meditate deeply on those feelings that had come up, and do you know what I found? I found forgiveness! I realised that YES, I had chosen my mum to be my mum, because she needed the wild spirit that was in me to lighten and brighten her life. And me? I needed those harsh early lessons in my life to teach me a better way. So that when my children’s souls chose me as a mum, I would find a more gentle approach to my parenting.
In all of my childhood experiences my dad and one of my older sisters taught me about peace, patience and long suffering, and I found happiness and kindness. Now when I think of that elderly lady lying in her hospital bed, telling my dad over and over how much she loves him, I see the loving and caring mum who was in there being forced by society to be hard on a free spirited and strong willed little girl, and I am more determined than ever to show my girls that love, respect and compassion that is deep inside my mum.
Whatever you do and however you feel about your parents, remember without them you wouldn’t have life, and without life you wouldn’t be able to find the joy that is always there, just a breath or a thought away <3