Sunday, May 10, 2015

Bringing a New Focus to My Mother's Day

There are certain days each year that are especially difficult to get through after estrangement. These days can be triggers for great sorrow, hurt, anxiety and sadness.

Often after being estranged I have found myself trying to ignore the event.  But of course that does not work for the thing you don't want to think about seems to become the very thing your mind wants to focus on.

For this reason I have been striving to see mothers day differently.  My goal is to face the day with new thoughts and new resolutions that allow me to see the day as a tribute to myself. 
I don't know how much success I will have, but there is no harm in trying. 

The first events that I stated to reclaim for myself were the "Birthdays".  I now see them as birthing days and celebrate that I gave birth! I no longer celebrate the child that was born that is now an Estranging Adult.  I celebrating the birthing process and how that allowed me to grow as a person, I honour who I became after giving birth, a mom.

So this year, it is my goal to celebrate "mothering day" in this new manner.  
  • I will celebrate that I gave birth, that I was a mom, that I was the best mom that I knew how to be!  
  • I will celebrate that I raised my family to the best of my ability with the knowledge and skills I had at that time. 
  • I will celebrate that I gave them the opportunities that I could with the resources that I had.
  • I will celebrate that I gave them wings and I gave them roots.  

My job is done. I validate myself for raising strong minded, independent, capable people.  People that are able to make choices and decisions.  People ready to make their own lives and chart their own path in life.  People who have a right to their own opinions and values.  People I did not smother with my expectations for them, nor limit their ability to follow their own dreams. 

Being estranged has forced me to face that in giving them the confidence and ability to make choices I also gave them the freedom of choice to erase me from their lives, their minds and their thoughts.  If they do not see the value of what I gave them; this is their shortcoming, not mine.  It is not my responsibility to coerce them into being respectful.  That is their choice. What they choose to do with that freedom to choose and the future consequences of those choices is also their responsibility not mine. 

So from this day forward I will not sit and wait for validation from my offspring.  I will not wait for them to bring me words of praise or flowers or recognize me in any significant way.  I will not raise my expectations or hopes to be included in their lives in any significant way.  By not having expectations, I can prevent myself from being disappointed.  

Personal character building for requires me to change my way of thinking.  Just because they don't value my job or my relationship to them does not mean that I value myself any less.

It is time for me to learn to love and honour myself.

From this day forward 
  • I will validate my accomplishments
  • I will recognize the good that I did even as I accept my failings.
  • I will honour my skills even as I accept my shortcomings.
  • I will appreciate the sum of my experiences, with emphasis on the positive even while accepting my moments of failure. 
  • I will honour that I do not need to be perfect as long as I always have acted with integrity, caring and compassion. 

These are my new Mother's Day rules for celebration.  I will celebrate myself and the way that I successfully completed a challenging task.  

Okay so this is new to me and I don't know how well I will do, but this is my intention!  

  • Will I still feel sadness when I see mothers surrounded by offspring that include them in their lives? Of course!  
  • Will I still wish that things could have been different? Naturally!
  • Will I still feel an ache in my heart? Most assuredly!  
  • Will I let that stop me from having a happy Mother's day? No, this I refuse to do!  It is my day, I am a mom!  

Renate Dundys Marrello 
2015 – 05 – 10

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  1. Thank you for your blog. This is where I am at on my journey, it is a healthy place to be mentally, spiritually and physically.

  2. I appreciate this since it helps me to start living life with a healthier outlook now