I was feeling kind of down yesterday. I think the combination of dropping a lot of cash at the auto repair shop and then going out and doing some errands, only to see "Happy Mother's Day!" plastered just about everywhere, really made me sad. The fact that people were rushing around buying things for their Easter Sunday meal or gathering really didn't bother me. It was never a significant holiday in my life. The other one, the "Mother" (haha) of all acknowledgement days, well that's another story.
This year's holiday is especially charged for me after the combined double whammy of my recent miscarriage and loss of my own mother. I'd like to think that I can handle it in a logical manner, but I am finding that Mother's Day isn't bringing up logical issues, only emotional ones.
I called my stepmom last night to check in. She and my father have been married for almost twenty years. She's a very supportive person although I have chosen not to tell her or my father of my ttc plans. As we were chatting I told her how my mother's death has ripped open a lot of old wounds. Despite having grieved the loss of her (or what a mother was supposed to be like) years ago, her death brought it all up again. Our conversation led to me asking in a rhetorical fashion why my father had ever been with my mother in the first place. In all these years I never really asked him that question. Their relationship before I came along was something I hadn't really considered before (oh the joys of egocentric childhood!).
Once, when I was 12 and shortly after my parents' divorce I remember glancing through the newspaper (back in those days divorce announcements were printed in the paper). I was shocked out of my shoes to see their marriage date in print along with the official divorce date. The marriage date was three years after I was born and shortly before the birth of my brother. It had never occurred to me that I was born out of wedlock or that my appearance in their marriage was nothing less than planned and wanted.
When I mentioned this to my stepmom last night she told me that my dad's mother (a strong matriarch) all but forced my father to marry my mother. Well, she and the mores of the Catholic Church made the decision a foregone conclusion. What surprised me is the fact that my stepmom said my grandmother recently apologized to my father for making him marry my mother.
I didn't ask more about this apology because my mind was running in so many directions. What exactly was my grandmother apologizing for, especially this late in the game?
My grandmother had six children who produced over 25 grandkids, who have since produced dozens of great and great-great grandkids. In my grandmother's house, on the longest unobstructed wall of the living room, appears a photo of each of her children, with that person's spouse, then kids, then their kids, etc. It's all chronologically placed, this line of genealogical proof of love, marriage and fertility. My picture is the only bastion of white space on the entire wall. There is no spouse nor children nor grandchildren (egads!) under my section under my father's frame. I exist alone on an island of Sherwin Williams' eggshell white.
This has always been a point of embarrassment and pain for me. This wall that proves I have been skipped over in love and barren of offspring. So when my stepmom made this comment about my grandmother's apology I immediately thought she was actually sorry I was the reason for the marriage, that his bastion of white space on her living room wall bothers her as much as it does me. Perhaps she feels I am so damaged that the normalcy of a spouse and family were clearly impossible for me. Maybe long before my older cousins up on the first row of the photo parade had produced the first grandchildren my grandmother knew I was doomed to a dead end on this photographic representation of the family tree.
I know this is probably not true, but that's the first place my mind went after my stepmom made that revelation.
Mother's Day has always been a rough one for me but this year...well I'll be glad to see it go. I only wish I could hide away in my apartment until it's over. I don't know what I'll actually do on this day. Right now my main concern is getting through all the days until that day.