Happy Birthday, Mom
Monday, December 31, 2012
Today would have been my mother's 80th birthday. She died this summer. We had not spoken in over a decade.
(*Note: My mother was severely mentally ill and untreated by her choice her entire adult life.)
As I ponder 2013, and what I want to achieve - I want to take a moment to realize what I have already achieved that my mother never accomplished, due to her illness and refusal (and the refusal of her family) to get help because mental illness was taboo resulting in her illness eventually taking her over completely:
I attended college.
I have held a job, including leadership responsibilities, for well over a decade.
I have raised my children with the understanding it's important to say you're sorry - that you make mistakes - even when you are an adult, if not more importantly when you are an adult.
I never abandoned my children, regardless of how hard it was (or is).
I sought help for my depression.
I put others before myself (tho this is a double edged sword and I need to work on BALANCE in this area).
I made certain that people were more important to me than money, status, or what the neighbor's think.
I have protected my children to the best of my ability.
I have broken the cycle. The cycle of abuse, of abandonment, of mental illness breaking a family.
Happy Birthday Mom. I don't have many good memories of this date in my life...but today, I can see clearly what I have accomplished and I can move on.