I recently read a blog post I had previously written, and was quite proud of, to her.
I pretended that it was written by somebody else.
She didn’t seem too impressed.
“Did you like that?” I asked her.
“It’s okay. It’s funny.”
She didn’t think it was funny at all. In fact I could see her judging it hard. She also knew it was written by me. How could she not? The sentence structure reeked of me. Who knows me better than my own mother?
Now, this post isn’t pleasing to me at all anymore. It seems plaintive. It sounds like I am trying too hard. People have said some nice things about the post. But it has grown some fungus in my mind. It’s not something I am proud of anymore. It is stale and old and in need of refinement.
And all because my mother didn’t think it was great.
You see, recently I have thought I am an independent young lady who is very different from my mother. I have felt a little guilty because I am constantly telling my mother that her way is in need of refinement. Perhaps I have been criticising a little. My mother mostly takes it in her stride and brushes it off because she knows me, but sometimes she tells me not to be such a hoity toity person. She expresses frustration at my behaviour.
“Sorry, Mama” I say, quietly. Sometimes I do not realise I am being like that.
I feel terrible, of course. But this particular experience has highlighted to me that I do value my mother very highly and really do want her to be proud of my work. It also makes me realise that I need to simmer down and let her do her things her way; the way she has been doing it since before I was born, and the way she will continue to do it regardless of what I say.
My mother is a wonderful woman. She has brought me up along with my four other siblings. It was not always easy. She has had to fight for a lot of things for us. She sacrificed a lot of things for our future, including being with her husband. She is not perfect, but nobody is. Just because I notice her flaws doesn’t mean I should fixate on them. I have a habit of fixating on flaws. My mother has done so much and continues to do so much. She is beautiful, even though she doesn’t always think so. She works hard. She values people because of their honesty and integrity, and she is a fighter for justice.
She also likes baby elephants.