Monday, September 22, 2008

i don't believe i mentioned

After our plane from JFK landed the other day, I turned my blackberry back on and was immediately buzzed about a phone message, which was from my mom, telling me to call her as soon as we landed. Silly, naive me, I did as instructed, and listened as mom said that she had left some things on my front porch for me.

Turned out she probably didn't need to notify me because the boys had moved the gifts into the kitchen but there's no way I would have missed the four large white Serta pillows from Stan's Club that were sitting on the bar ('I was using your bathroom a while back and noticed that your pillows looked pretty cruddy'). Guess she didn't notice that the cruddy pillows are goose down pillows that Jack loves that I bought a couple of years ago, half price, but still cost $80 each. They might look a bit loved without their pillowcases, but, well, that's because he loves them.

However, I might have missed the book she left for me. (Side note: while cleaning out the bookshelves in the basement last month, I found a book that I bought in 1977 or so that is called, "I feel guilty when I say no". Pause for a minute and think about that.) So, back to the book that my mom thought I needed. It is called, "I don't have to make everything better."

The book my mom bought for me is all about the importance of validation in relationships. Not solving problems for others who haven't asked for help, not doing things for others who can do for themselves, not doing the thing you think is most helpful but instead doing the thing the other wants or better still simply listening and acknowledging.

You know, that most important thing that mothers do for their children. Sometimes.

1 comment:

Skybird said...

Interesting thoughts. I sense, from some of your other writings concerning your mother, that you find a bit of irony in what she has chosen to share with you...

One of my mom's teachings that I often reflect upon is that we often talk the loudest and try to force on others those things we, ourselves most need to learn.

I have found that as weak as we sometimes feel as parents, we tend to give to our children the best we understand at the time.

I have two moms. Double the guilt, double the fun... double the irony with spearmint gum!

... I've learned a lot from my children. We have a lot to teach our parents!