Friday, October 30, 2009

My Parents

I love my parents.

My mom and I had some real rough spots when we both were younger. There were times that I thought I could never have anything other than a toxic relationship with her. We were a dysfunctional family that nowadays would have been involved in family counseling. Without going into the things we faced, let's just say that the way family drama was dealt with in small town America in the 1950s was to simply pretend that nothing was wrong.

God's love, maturity on the part of me and my mom, forgiveness and humor has given us the opportunity to reconcile in ways I never thought possible. Once again, He is able to exceedingly and abundantly do more than all we ask or think, according to the power at work in us.

My parents are now 83 and 89. They live in a lovely home in Greensboro, NC in a neighborhood of yuppies. Mom and Dad are the grandparents to the neighborhood. Dad still takes care of the yard and garden every day, and can frequently be found in his workshop. On trash day he walks up and down the street, pulling up all the garbage cans for the working neighbors. He gives neighborhood kids rides in his wheelbarrow. There are times that there's a knock on the front door, and when Mom answers it, it's a child asking if "Mr. Jay can come out to play." Mom is an accomplished cook, knitter and sewer. She's known as the Hat Lady at her church and when she doesn't wear one of her own straw creations, the congregation takes it as a personal affront.

They're active in their community and church. Sure, they have some health issues. Mom has asthma and macular degeneration. Dad is very forgetful and showing some mild signs of dementia. But nothing holds them back.

No matter what is going on, when I ask Dad, "How ya' doin'?" his inevitable response is "Well, I'm doing just fine. Every day is a good one."  And he means it.

They are inspiring to me in so many ways.

I'm going to use this divorce as a way to become even closer to Mom and Dad by moving nearer to them. They relocated to North Carolina after Dad retired from being a river boat captain. There is no family near them. So this summer (that's a best guess on the timeframe) I plan on renting or buying a house within 30 minutes or so of them.

I've raised my children to be loving, independent young men. I have a couple of jobs here, but no career. And frankly, I don't care to see my husband and his new girlfriend. I'm still a bit too raw for that.

I hope that my folks have many more years on this earth and that by moving closer I can be available to them in many ways that I haven't been previously. My mom has already said that having me closer would be a blessing, and that for whichever of my parents should survive the other, having me there would be a great comfort.

I'm laying down my title of Wife and Mother, and re-entering the occupation of Daughter. I'm pretty sure, with God's help, that I'll get it right this time around.



Niki :-) said...

That's great that you can reconcile with your mom. I on the other hand, cannot. I had a similar past with my mom, however my mom is still 'crazy'. The fact of the matter is she doesn't admit anything. Has no way of ever apologizing or anything. I'm friendly with her but that's the extent of our relationship. I did not speak with her for about 2 year period about 6 years ago. Decided (due to family pressures) to reconcile to the point of being civil and talking. Now we talk occasionally, but it's only when I remember to call her. She rarely picks up the phone. We live in different states and have very different lives. She and my dad are divorced. In fact both never remarried. Anywho, I'm glad to see you could work it out w/your mom . I think my mom is too far gone. I don't. know.

Linda said...

The Lord is working in your life. The insights that you are receiving and things you are able to work through to make your decisions.

As I wrote a few weeks ago, I have claimed Philippines 4:13 and knowing that, the Lord and I can make it through anything.

My parents divorced after being married for 41 years. My mother, who is a strong Christian woman, had legal grounds for divorce for years. It wasn't until she had scriptural grounds that she took the steps to divorce my father. Due to circumstances surrounding the divorce, I no longer have a relationship with my father.

One step at a time.

Wendy said...

I think you'll be very happy you've decided to be closer to your parents. They will need you in these coming years and you will never regret this decision. I lost both my parents this year and am so thankful I had time.. and made time for them. God bless you in your plans.

Tracey McBride ~ Frugal Luxuries said...

Linda, you put these sentiments so beautifully. The decision to give unconditional love is a very powerful thing. Your parents are blessed to have you, as you are blessed to have them. I'm looking forward to hearing more.
Good thoughts and prayers from...Tracey.xo

Myra said...

Good for you, and good for your parents! A new "invention" of your life/purpose is a step in the right direction of healing for yourself at this time, and your children will hopefully be understanding of this move... 8-)