My mother had no tolerance for my crying.
“If anyone looks at Anjuelle, she cries,” was how she described me.
She wanted to instill in me a mental toughness–what she had.
I was not going for it.
And so I cried.
In that a memoir, and the structure of any narrative, consists of scenes, I must write various scenes of my life, those that most depict my suffering for which I offer forgiveness and hold compassion for my mother.
This is hard. Not simply because I am writing of my mother, and about myself. The challenge lies in my lack of certainty, the ambiguity of my mother’s actions, and thus my ambivalence.
In stating, “…mothers and daughters cannot serve as best friends to the other…,” Linda Perlman Gordon and Susan Morris Shaffer add in an excerpt from Too Close for Comfort: Questioning the Intimacy of Today’s New Mother-Daughter Relationship , that the …basic question… a mother must answer is: “…Do you trust your daughter to be an independent and self-sufficient woman? Can you support her in making choices and doing things differently from how you would do them?”
The answer a mother offers lies within her ability or inability to trust
When I was a child my mother demanded 100% obedience.
Did I give it to her?
Neither did I agree with everything she said or believed.
Many of the lessons she taught and that I employ have kept me in good stead as an adult, wife and mother. I thoroughly appreciate then.
Yet, I have often wished my mother could have supported me more in standing upon my own ground.
Better said, I would have appreciated immensely my mother supporting me in the areas where we differed in our perspectives on an issue.
When our youngest child reached five-years-old, I began