Today I spoke to a woman friend whose 86 yr. old mother just returned from a short hospital stay from a fall. Fortunately there were no major injuries, some bruising of her leg. She lives in a retirement home which has graduated care and is currently still able to live in her own apartment.
She has become clingy and cantankerous, wanting help only from her daughter and refusing help from the retirement home in which she lives. She no longer wants her small dog and refused to take the dog back after her return from the hospital. Fortunately for the dog there is a good friend who has given it a home. In short she is reverting to the small spoiled child that she once was.
What is the point in this story? Well having been thru this experience myself a few years ago with a very cantankerous mother, who has since passed over, I find it more and more frequent that caretakers (children) have very little outlet for the frustrating experience of being in charge of a person who consistently verbally abuses them, shows little appreciation and takes for granted that the son or daughter will always be there for them. So its always a relief when you are able to talk with another person who can admit that their parent was absolutely mean and awful at times.
To even verbalize this in a blog brings up fears of criticism for being unkind to mothers – ye Gods, mothers are holy – no? We are what we are and it appears that we go out of this world very much like we have lived in this world; either at peace and kind, or pushing people around to get their needs met.
So, we had a good laugh at how although we love our mothers, sometimes, that is not a good enough reason to allow abuse, verbal or emotional from mothers who have tongues that have been in the pencil sharpener. Its easy for me now after my mother’s death eight years ago to remember all the wonderful things about her, however, my friend’s current experience brought back the memories of how difficult and challenging those last 4-5 years of my mother’s life. Only now I can laugh, at the time it was happening it produced lots and lots of angst.