My mother and I lived in two different worlds. I was in the real world and she was in hers. I never told her what I “needed” from her as my mother. It would have been a waste of time. She generally focused on my dad, herself and her own needs, so I just got mad at her. Often.
A thirty something I know, who had her first baby a few months ago, has a mother similar to mine. She chose, however, to write her mom a long epistle (how do you like that word?), explaining what kind of grandmother she wishes she’d be, as well as mother. If my daughter and I didn’t get along especially well, and she reached out to me like this daughter is doing, it would get my attention. Sometimes someone needs to hit us over the head with the facts, even if it’s our own children.
Our daughters and sons may have emerged from our bodies, but they really are separate people from us. Learning how to keep our distance, while respecting our children as they emerge as adults, is one of the hardest lessons in life. That’s why Everyone Loves Raymond strikes a chord, isn’t it?
I admire my young friend. I hope her mother has the sense to pay attention to her letter. I wish I had written one to my mom.