Being a daughter of a mother, who is still living, might have presented more apprehensions for me to join the Motherless Daughters class than it possibly could have for others. Whether or not the class was for me or for those I support, I was determined to find out. Having worked very hard on my own recovery, over the last several years, I felt mostly settled into a comfortable rhythm of life and living. I was very well aware,though, that I still had some sticky spots, that could be painful when touched. Still I determined to head confidently into this class, knowing that I still had some unanswered questions, and hoping that even just a few of them could be put to rest. And this is what happened.
Initially the hard work involved relying on the Holy Spirit to help me translate and make personal Hope Edelman’s book. Since her Motherless Daughters book is written from the standpoint of a daughter, who has lost her mom through physical death, I was consistently making the mental shift needed for my learning to take place. Studying along with other women in similar situations, I have found ways to be grateful for new discoveries in my past and present.
lt has been affirming and encouraging to know that God has brought me SO FAR in my personal growth and especially in my relationship with Him. I could never be healed without Him. I still believe that I shouldn’t “live” in the past. My past, however, should be embraced and used to mature and equip me for today, and it has. Since the start of this class, I can confirm that some of the disconnect with my mom has been due to our extreme personality differences. A mom has a certain responsibility to do her best to find a way into their child’s heart, and I don’t think she worked very hard at that task with either myself or my brother. Whether she did or didn’t is not mine to fret over. lt simply WAS.
Today I find myself more content in knowing that much of her behavior comes from past pain, to which I might never be privy. What I am to do, is to distinguish the areas over which I have control. Then let go of the rest. The funny thing is that my mom actually taught me that wonderful concept. Little did she know that I would need to apply it most of all with her!! We also touched on my dad’s role in my losses, and how I learned from his behaviors. Other answers came in regards to my multiple, short term dating experiences, and also in regards to my inability to keep friends. I thank God for this, because now I can find a resting place for that aspect of my life. Maybe even apply it to working on friendship issues with my own daughter.
A quote on page 69 in the MD workbook says, “Compulsion substitutes action for emotion. lt is despair on the emotional level.” This was a profound idea. One of which I absolutely agree and have experienced on both personal and relational levels. I grew in my awareness of two more things. My need for empowerment is insatiable. That “love tank” is almost always on empty or could even have a hole in the bottom, for that matter. I can almost never get enough, because it is completely a matter of the will for me to believe that God has given me the ability to do, think or say anything of importance. When friends try their comments don’t often register in my brain. On each occasion, God shows me how to graciously receive those, as a direct gift from His heart to mine. Secondly, in spite of having this great gaping need for empowerment,God has turned my eyes toward the gifts I HAVE been given by my mom (AND dad). As a young child, I received most aspects of acceptance, nourishment, and instruction. Before this class, I couldn’t identify those as gifts which God gave me through her. This is one of the reasons that I live more gratefully today, which inspires me to find a way to thank my mom for those very important and foundational gifts.