Thursday, April 28, 2005

A letter that will only exist here.

I’m having a difficult time coping with my mom. She’s generally difficult to get along with. Her bipolar quirks are annoying at best and infuriating at worst. This past weekend was one that sent me back to a rotten teenager who wants to slam doors and tell Mom to fuck off. I can honestly say that if she wasn’t my mother, I’d have written her out of my life, or at least limited contact, long ago. Nothing that happened this past weekend was exceptionally horrible, but it’s all been simmering a while.

She’s generally OK if I go visit her. But when she comes over to our house, the gloves come off. For whatever reason, being off her home turf brings out the worst.

Dear Mom,

Thank you for turning into a spoiled child this weekend. As you know, I have little patience with you and find you difficult to get along with. I know it’s because of your illness and I truly am sorry for what it has done to you. I get so angry with you, then feel guilty afterward. It’s an emotional rollercoaster and it’s taking a toll on me. I hate that you’ve become a 62-year old with the mentality and emotional stability of a 14-year old and the frail body of a 75-year old. And I know you do, too.

You picked the worst possible week to decide to go out of town and dump the responsibility for daily special feedings of your elderly cat on me. Of course I would figure out a way to feed him even though it’s a huge inconvenience. And I think you were counting on that. Luckily, Hubby was able to do it. You hanging up on me when I tried to explain why it was inconvenient and how I would have appreciated more than 3 days notice – or better yet, you ASKING me first, was fucking classic. Yep, you act like a child. No, I wasn’t really nice to you, but my patience has its limits.

These are the reasons why this week was so bad, since you didn’t let me finish:

It’s my first week fulltime since Peanut was born and I’m hating it. I’m feeling guilty for him being at daycare, but glad I’m not home with him all day because I get stressed when I am. I feel like a shit parent, but hate that he has to be at shit daycare even worse.

Hubby had to teach Monday, work late Tuesday and is out of town for class today and tomorrow. That means that I have to both drop off and pick up Peanut all days except Tuesday when Hubby dropped him off and yesterday when Hubby was on a normal schedule. I have a 40-45 minute commute to work. Stopping by daycare ads another 30 minutes on to that. Which means I have to leave the house by 6:40 to drop Peanut off by 7:15 in order to get to work on time and have to leave work early to get to daycare before they close at 5:45. Running by your house ads another 30-40 minutes on top of that…meaning I wouldn’t be home till nearly 7 pm. Throw in an unhappy baby who has been at daycare all day and is hungry and tired and wants to be held and you can see where this is all going.

The guilt trip you laid on me just before you hung up was crap-tastic. You know, when I told you to please give me some warning next time and you replied with “There probably won’t be a next time. I never get to go anywhere” CLICK. It almost worked. I started to feel guilty about that. Things aren’t easy for you, you have little money, don’t drive, have frequent arthritis pain… Then I realized those things have nothing to do with me, nor are they my fault. Then it became funny, because you do occasionally get out of town. You just have a selective memory. Remember last year when Hubby and I bought you airfare to go visit Grandma and your sisters and arranged all your transportation to and from the airports. Remember the year before that when Hubby and I took you with us for a long weekend to your favorite beach. So don’t fucking guilt trip me. I do the best I can. Hubby and I aren’t exactly loaded, yet we’ve managed to give you a couple of little vacations and recently have coughed up money for your medical bills even though we’re up to our ears in our own.

Yes, the baby has a cold. It’s just a cold. No, it’s not allergies. Quit implying that it is, because I know the implication includes our pets. Yes, we did take him to the doctor AGAIN just to be sure. No, we didn’t need you telling us to make a doctor’s appointment. No, we don’t need your fucking vaporizer that takes K*z medicine. The cool mist vaporizer works just fine. Yes, we do also have a steam vaporizer but don’t want to risk any burns. So fucking drop it. As far as I’ve been told, you were institutionalized for pretty much the first year of my life, so don’t try to pull the childcare expert crap on me.

The reason we don’t let you babysit is because we’re afraid to. Period. I’m tired of beating around the bush on that one. I always hedge the answer because I don’t want to hurt your feelings. The bottom line is that Hubby and I agree on this one and we don’t think you’re physically or mentally up for unsupervised care of Peanut. You have nearly smothered him on the couch twice. Remember when he was crying and you accidentally smooshed his face into the back cushion and had no idea because you’re so deaf you couldn’t tell his cries were muffled? You sleep so much of the day we’re afraid you wouldn’t wake up in an emergency, or that you’d fall asleep holding him and drop or smother him. And you just plain do some bizarre shit.

Finally, DO NOT INSIST ON PUTTING THE BABY ON THE FLOOR TO PLAY WITH HIS TOYS. AND DO NOT PICK HIM UP OFF THE FLOOR. You can barely get down to the floor on your own and you don’t need to do it while holding my child. I watched you pick him up off the floor when you refused my help. I witnessed how you had to cling to the entertainment center for balance while getting up. It’s dangerous. Get over your mule-like stubbornness and quit insisting you’re able to do things safely when you clearly aren’t. Peanut is my only child and if something happened to him while in your care, I would never forgive you. In fact, you’d be permanently out of my life.


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