As Mother’s Day is approaching, I have been reflecting on my relationship with my daughter as well as the one that I have with my mother.
Ever since I found out I was going to have a daughter and soon to be two, I was determined to nurture that relationship to the best of my ability.
You see, my mother and I have a very complex relationship. When I was younger I would say that it was a very cold relationship. But I just think we did not understand what the other one needed from each other.
To some people, my childhood would be considered tragic, to others, it is just the typical “American story”. My mother had me when she was 19 and soon separated from my father when I was three. I have no memories of my mother and father together but a lot of her dating other men to which I hated with a passion.
My father had a lot of health issues from having Type 2 Diabetes since a child and ended up passing away when I was 12. With my mom having to work a lot and still being “young” my grandmother took on the primary role of raising me for most of my childhood.
When my mother and I talk about my childhood we both have two very different views on how it went and why it was like the way it was. But since becoming a mom I have come to realize that most people feel that way about their childhood.
I was unaware of a lot of the hardships my mother had to go through and never thought about how she felt when I was younger. I was just so angry she wasn’t like “all the other moms”.
To be honest, I did not make it any easier on her. I would be so cruel with my words just to try and get a reaction from her. Even to this day I sometimes fall into my same old habits with her when we are experiencing a hard time.
What I have come to learn through my self-development journey is that she did the best that she knew how to do at that time. We all have our own demons we are working through and raising children through that time can be tough.
No, I do not agree with all of her decisions but I have learned to accept them and believe that she did the best she could do.
She often said “just wait until you have children of your own” or now she says “just wait until Melina is older”. I am not going to lie when I first had my daughter I had these expectations that I had to be the perfect mom and that I was going to be.
You want to know the truth? I am not. But I still love my daughter more than anything.
My mother was not the perfect mom, but I can see that she loved me very much and still does.
No matter what life throws at us, we have been able to work through it together. Sometimes we are walking through life very angrily and hurt but we always find our way back to each other and know that we are there for each other.
In the past couple years we have experienced some very trying times with each other. Accepting one another for who we are and continuing to move forward has been a game changer in our relationship.
I like to say that we have a very open communication policy between the two of us, good and bad. My mother has most definitely seen my ugliest side and heard my cruelest words. While I am ashamed to admit that, it is the truth.
And yet she would drop anything in a time where I really needed her. The same goes for her, there have been times where I swore I would not talk to her and then I realized she needed my help and I was right there with her.
Because that is what mothers do. They are always there in the best way that they know how to be.
I hope my daughters can one day realize too that even though I am not a perfect mom, I love them with all of my heart and have done the best that I can do for them.
If you are going through a difficult season with your mother or daughter, choose love. Choose to love each other even though your opinions might be conflicting. Choose to love each other through the pain of the past.
Choose to love them anyway and show grace.
Happy Mother’s Day to every Mama out there!