Monday, December 26, 2011

A Time and a Place

So, the holidays are almost over, and I've made it through the toughest part. The holiday spirit is still in the air and usually is until New Years Eve, which is nice. I had hoped to make 2011 my "fresh start," after ridding myself of G (for the most part) and trying to start over for myself and my daughter, but it didn't work out quite as I had expected. I've never been one to make corny new years resolutions (or any at all, for that matter), but what better time than now to try and start over? I want to lose weight (at least back to the weight I was at last Christmas, and even then some), further my education and find a steady job that will pay the bills. I realize that I have to put in 99% of the work myself to get these things to happen, and finally, I've had the wake-up call that I need to actually put these things into action.

Christmas was tense yesterday. There were tears in my eyes when I woke up and they were hiding right under the surface for the rest of the day. I tried to simply think of it as another day, not as one of the happiest days of the year. My parents told me this is what it means to 'be an adult. it starts to feel less and less like Christmas each year that you get older,' but I know it was so much more than that. Knowing that she is now old enough to open her own gifts, with help, and play with them and be excited on Christmas morning, while also knowing that I'm missing all of that, was really hard. Next year, she'll be 2 - even harder. I tried to comfort myself by telling myself that her parents must be so, so, so excited on Christmas, watching their two children playing with their gifts and smiling for pictures by the tree, but it really didn't help. Call me selfish, but it actually just made me jealous, which made me feel worse. I even let a pretty nasty thought cross my mind...I was checking, hoping, and checking some more for an email throughout the day, with even just one picture of my little girl or a note about how much she liked my gifts to her. Every time I checked...nothing. So I started to think about how they must be busy, they must be doing family Christmas things and watching their children open gifts. That's when I thought - my sacrifice is the reason they are so busy. My child is the one they are watching play with her gifts, can't they at least send me a quick text? Email? Anything? This holiday is all about family, and the most important part of my family is missing because she is now their family.

Then I snapped out of it and realized how childish and selfish I was being. It's one day out of the year! They deserve the happiness they shared with our daughter (mine & theirs) on Christmas because they are raising her and loving her and being the mom and dad that G and I couldn't be. They are there with her through the not-so-pleasant times (expenses, times she's up all night, or sick, etc.), so they deserve every second they get to spend with her, especially the ones when she is awake, laughing, and talking to them. It was that thought, though, that made me cry. It was my crying that led my mother tell me that "there is a time and a place, and this is not the time nor the place." REALLY? There is a time and a place to miss your child? There is a time and a place to cry over the fact your entire family is together, minus part of your own flesh and blood? Huh.

Don't get me wrong - I love my mom and she did her best to make this Christmas special for me. She made me laugh when I was about to cry, and put a lot of thought into my gifts and I will always appreciate that. But, really? A time and a place. I know how much she loves kids. I know she wishes more than anything that her granddaughter were here to celebrate with us and make a mess of all the wrapping paper. But she's not, and my mother played a bigger part in that decision than I've ever discussed on here (maybe I will someday). And no matter how you slice it, it's not the same. Parting with a grandchild is not the same as parting with a child. Not, not, not. So I get unreasonably angry when she tries to liken her loss to mine. I know she's sad, I know it hurts, I know it just flat-out sucks. But don't compare it, because it's not the same.

1 comment:

  1. Wow you have been so strong this Christmas! I'm sorry your mom made you feel like you didn't have the openness or freedom to grieve the way you needed to. I feel similar towards my parents; they have been supportive in some ways but a lot of their actions directly led me to place and it is frustrating to hear about "their grief" when I'm still dealing with mine. But I'm so glad you could find joy in knowing that your precious daughter was making memories and her parents and family DO have you to thank for that. I think it's a great idea to want to make some goals and changes- for yourself- and I'll be cheering you on every step of the way! Hugs!