I am feeling sad. Why is it that with all of the studying of communication I have done over the last eight years and all the comments on how impressed people are with my communication skills it breaks down so easily when it comes to family. (you don't need to answer that I know its not an uncommon phenomenon).
In general I have a great relationship with my mom. We can connect around a lot of things. I think that over time we have been changing and growing together to better understand one another and to be able to move through frustrating times with each other faster. We can chant together while we plant 10 year old tomato seeds saved by my grandmother when she was alive in hopes that the will grow (they did), we can talk about my few and far between experiences with illegal drugs, she can tolerate and maybe even like visiting me in this wacky ecovillage I live in (she is even willing to poop in a bucket now when she visits), recently we sang together at my cousins wedding and while practicing we were able to feel the connection that comes with getting the pitches just right (it is very hard for me to stay on pitch), she is a great sport when Sharon (how do you make an accent mark on the computer?) and I take her hiking, she can sometimes read my mind, her love is strong and consistent..... so why is she the first person through this whole thing who I feel super frustrated with? (again, no need to answer).
I think it would be most moms worst nightmare to go through what she is now going through. Imagining the very real possibility that she will outlive another child of hers. She has still not been able to see or touch me to see that although my energy is a fraction of what it has been, I am still alive and fairly functional. I want to be showing her more compassion maybe than anyone and instead today I found myself super pissed off. I felt so frustrated that I couldn't even articulate it to her when she called. I didn't get frustrated like this when the technicians in the hospital woke me up every two hours in the hospital to take vital signs (doesn't healthy sleep come in three hour cycles?), or when they came in a 4 to take blood, or when a group of not quite doctors yet came in at 7 to wake me up and tell me something that contradicts what my doctors said the day before, or when I waited for hours for a procedure to happen and then it was canceled meaning that I had to stay int he hospital even longer with no guarantee of when the procedures would actually happen, etc....
The things that sparked it were a couple of emails. I feel sooo frustrated with myself because I failed to set a boundary early on when I felt myself getting frustrated. Both emails were about things I did not need or want to be thinking about. I want to understand what the actual underlying need is. I want her to feel heard and supported. I find myself wanting perfection from myself in communication with her. I wish that I could ask her the questions I would ask most other people to find out what their needs are.
I guess when it comes to my mother I have higher expectations than with most people. She is supposed to read my mind in addition to all the other amazing things she does.
And once again I learn some lessons that i need to learn over and over. I am human and I will get frustrated with people. When I do it is helpful to allow it, experience it, get it out. I spent the time following my frustration talking to Nathan who helped me figure out what it is that I am wanting from my mother, watching the sensations in my body, ranting to Tereza and getting out some of the physical parts of the emotions, and then having an all womens healing session. I am now in touch with the love, able to see my part in my frustration, and am feeling much better overall.
Maybe my mother offers me a gift in being able to find the things that I respond to with frustration. It felt really good to release that kind of energy, especially when it was no longer feeling directed towards her. Welcome to my world frustration.