It may not make any sense, but I have learned that I cannot truly have conversations with my mom. As much as I love her (and I know she loves me), we simply cannot communicate properly. Either she gets mad, or I get mad, or we both scream at each other. It’s horrible.
I don’t know if it’s a language problem. I think we understand the words, but not necessarily the meaning behind them. Actually, that’s not the problem. We understand the words, and we attribute secret meanings to them. Secret bad meanings. For some reason, it’s as if I say something, and my mom assumes I’m saying some other bad thing–and vice versa.
So, I have given up. After years of trying to have meaningful conversations with my mother, I have decided it is time to give up. I cannot change her. She is who she is, wonderful and crazy. And I know that I don’t know how to express myself to her in a way that she can understand (without attributing secret bad meanings).
Instead, I’m writing this post to put it out there. Maybe the universe can somehow let her know these things.
1. Mom, you are a smart and talented woman. But you also make mistakes. Please accept them as yours. It makes it easier for all of us. Please learn from them as well.
2. Mom, you are a kind and caring person. But you have an odd way of showing this sometimes. Please consider the words you are saying and how hurtful they can be, even though you are trying to help. Your intentions are good, but your words still hurt.
3. Mom, you deserve happiness and peace. But I cannot tell if you are happy. I cannot tell if you have peace. I hope you do. But sometimes I worry. You are so focused on other things–maybe they are to distract you from your misery. I hope not. But I wish you every happiness that you are capable of.
4. Mom, you and I are different people, with some similarities. But it is the differences that I wish you could accept. I know you don’t understand me. I know that I don’t understand you. After all, we can’t communicate properly our real feelings and thoughts. Just superficial stuff is the best we can do. And I realize that the idea of talking about “real feelings” doesn’t make much sense to you. That’s okay. But we both need to simply accept one another, especially our differences. Neither one of us is going to change who we are.
5. Mom, please know that I love you. Please know that I appreciate everything that you’ve done for me. I know we fight a lot. Every time we fight, I kick myself for getting so angry. I know you won’t be around forever. Please know that the decisions I make are not my way of rejecting you, or your choices. I simply see the world differently than you do. The choices I make reflect who I am. They do not reflect my thoughts of you.
6. Mom, thank you for giving me a lot of freedom. I’ve read about the “tiger mother” idea. You were firm and strict, and you definitely pushed. But ultimately, I was able to do so much. Sure, we fought about a lot of my choices. And I know dad also fought for me as well. But I think I always knew it was my choice to make. You regretted letting me go off to college on the other coast, spend a semester in another country, move to other cities, etc. But I am so glad that I never felt like you would really stop me.
Thanks Mom. I wish I could tell these things to you in a way you could truly understand. But, I know we’d fight instead–and we would both be angry–and we would both feel misunderstood–and we would both lose the message. So here are the words on the electronic web that somehow connects us all. Hopefully in some mysterious way, the message will reach you.