Mother


Crying babies held to breast in love,
Easy to care for physical needs.
Eat, sleep, change, hold and then just repeat.

As they grow, their needs start expanding,
Teaching, learning, much to discerning,
Mom feeling her own wounds more clearly.

Her faith in the unseen comes and goes,
Feeling, being, becoming open.
In healing childhood heart’s size growing.

~~~

Being a mother is hands down the most difficult role I have taken on. It was relatively easy for me to care for my children as babies. Meeting their physical needs meant less sleep, yet I really did not have to think about it.

As my children have aged and their need for play grows, I find it more and more challenging to keep myself from being triggered. It’s much easier for me to work and complete tasks than it is for me to sit on the floor and play. When the family was together, their father easily took over that role while I took care of other needs.

It’s sad for me to confess that playing is difficult for me. I come by it honestly and my story behind that just keeps me stuck. Let’s just say I learned this from my mother and she from her mother. I am also confident that games and play were used as lures by the men who molested me. So I find myself having difficulty playing. Breathing into that can be difficult, especially when being tickled. (some of you will see irony there…)

Add to this that as I raise my children, I am also reparenting myself. Discovering and doing my best to heal the wounds that I have incurred; mothering myself, as it were. Being a parent means that all of my wounds are resurfacing. Common themes that rise up revolve around fears of: abandonment, lack of worth/value, needs not being met, resentment, expressing negative and positive emotions, not having enough resources: time, money, patience, love; to name but a few. My children easily trigger these fears. It can be a challenge to differentiate the trigger and the one causing it.

It is rare that I get on social media sites anymore. The FB and IG feeds are filled with happy, Rockwellian images of beautiful and happy families – like the Brady Bunch. Part of me sounds the B.S. Alarm and part of me feels jealous. I know the snap shots are one second “screen grabs” of the truth. The images represent on a small slice of the pie in their lives. Yet it triggers me, sad to say. Fear-avoidance healing means I should probably look anyway…

One of the hardest things for me to mitigate right now involves the two ends of the continuum in which I live on a weekly basis: 50% single; 50% single mom. I see the infinity symbol and the path I travel can only rest in the center when I am at work. At home, I live on one side or the other.

Another difficulty for me is in accepting the way that I was raised. As a mother, I do my very best to keep a level head. It’s not always easy and sometimes I feel that I fail at this miserably. Some of the things I swore I wouldn’t do as a parent, I do. It seems the harder I fight against the things I don’t like, the more I become them. Recognizing that the severity is lessened with each generation, I am still paying for the sins of my mother’s and the mothers before. Doing my best to keep this from being pushed forward takes great effort and awareness. It’s a sideways pill to swallow, the cure is bitter, healing so much pain from so many ancestors. Doing my best to minimize the building of more walls (ala Pink Floyd)

My role here is to further soften into my femininity. To allow my fullest expression as a mother, allowing my heart to remain open even when I want to close it down completely & batten the hatches. Here is a glimpse of that allowing from years ago (a small slice of the pie)

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 http://youtu.be/gObFOPYhVGg

47 thoughts on “Mother

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  1. I love this post because I walked a similar path and know the challenge to recreate our joy and rediscover our innate ability to play. From the picture I can tell you ate doing quite well, my lil sister.

    Love you ❤️

    Liked by 2 people

  2. What a heartfelt post Tiffany, full of truth and shades of hope and healing. I think you’re wise to keep off FB and instead focus on your small patch of the world, that’s what matters. Sending you warm hugs of friendship.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. There is so much here – I am a similar battle, I try to give my kids a good basis for how to live without being able to use anything (hopefully) from my own childhood. We can’t fix yesterday – we can only make it go away by not passing it on. I say this with the full weight of how difficult this is – my heart goes out to you my friend. Tough dragon to slay.

    Wayne

    Liked by 1 person

  4. My mother was beaten regularly by her father. To say the least, her childhood was traumatic, but she didn’t pass that on, was a kind, gentle mother. I had a friend who was beaten by her mother, raped by an uncle before she was six years old, and was later, a loving mother. The cycle can be broken, as you well know. Yaa for you, Tiffany.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. FB is the devil. Ha. It looks like you’re doing a terrific job with your children. My girls are passed the play stage. I miss those days. Your love for your children comes shining through in this post. I’m sorry your own childhood was full of turmoil and abuse.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Tosha, you are so sweet! I wish I felt that way in myself re terrific job. Thank you for your support! I appreciate it. Re my childhood, thank you for your empathy. I use it to illustrate the hurdles that we can overcome if we choose. It’s my hope in sharing that others may learn from it (and it helps me to heal my shame of it).
      Thank you, again! Xoxo

      Liked by 1 person

      1. You’re welcome. Just remember you did nothing wrong. People who prey on children are the worst kind of low lives. You are not to blame. Keep sharing your truth and never forgot how inspiring you are

        Liked by 1 person

  6. Love this post Tiffany, so clear & honest. We all struggle with these feelings of inadequacy if we are *caring* parents, regardless of our upbringing. You are working through your past, I love hearing how you are also parenting yourself. I feel that. They make us reset all our standards, reinventing what doesn’t work, day by day. Keep on!
    I hear you on Fb, that’s a big part of why I started by blog in the first place. I needed MORE, something REAL. I still post some shots of the fam, but there is no real depth for me there. Keep on sister. 🙂

    Like

  7. Tiffany, I love that photo of you and your son. It is precious. I hope its framed on the wall. Those are the types of memories we should all be creating. Playful and free! Sometimes, in the moment we need to rearrange our priorities, or it’s lost. However, I will now always picture you with blue marker!
    Your choice of music illustration”s for your writing touches me even more. Although I’m not a musician, not enuf discipline?, I oversee audio, video and lighting at my church. The mixer is my instrument and sometimes I let myself in late at nIght to really crank up the system, can you hear Lindsay Stirling or the Piano Guys at 100db?. I’m gonna have to go play “Mother”. It really got to me. I grew in in those times with bomb drills at school crawling under the desk. How insane is that? Wondering if the B-52’s at Bergstrom AFB were going leap into the sky on their way to Cuba. In Scotland my father was the senior enlisted with Submarine Squadron 14. He had anger issues that were visited on me and to this day I hear his voice in my head wondering out loud if his son will ever do something right? I’m just now learning to tell that voice to “Shut the hell up” I cried myself to sleep every nite for a year wondering if anyone would love me. And then he died, massive coronary , June 26, 1968, I was 14 and the man I was in awe of and had a love/fear relationship with was gone. Just 4 months before He asked to go on a skiing trip with him. I said no And he was gone, no doovers, no second chances. No final words.
    But I made it, and I’m learning how to deal with it and heal. Your openess and honesty while sharing your pain inpires me greatly. Thank you. Now if I can just learn how to turn this into poetry instead of an incredibly long comment. Blessings, Ken

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    1. Ken, you are such an amazing soul. The more I learn about you, the more I am surprised. Usually I can read people pretty well and you continually surprise me!
      I’m glad to see how calm you are in spite of your own traumatic past with your father.
      Love the 100 dB that’s hilarious!
      Yes, I’m learning that there are no second chances, hence my desire to change so much NOW!
      Glad you’re leaning to heal. It’s no easy task! I’m so glad to hear I’m helping you on your own journey, as your support is with me on mine.
      Poetry will come in time. Try something new. You can always rewrite it!
      Many blessings, Tiffany

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  8. My frst concern is how to catch all my thoughts, sometimes they come fast and furious. How do you remember yours? Write, type, record on the phone… have to try that one.
    I think I can get more than 100 db now, just got a new subwoofer with a thousand watt amp. Might sneak up there tonight and reminise with the Kinks. Hope the marker came off, that wouldn’t look too professional tomorrow! Lol.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh, the marker was from years ago….I think I mentioned it, but maybe not clear.
      Re how I remember, all of the above!
      Keep practicing, you’ll get it. And at times I do forget. That’s what some of the part 2 and 3s are for!

      Like

  9. Great post Tiff! I really love the photo of you breastfeeding. Its one of the most tender moments. Did you know that the bonding the mother has with her infant in those first short 12 months shapes their psyche for life? It may have seemed simple raising babies compared to older children (and it really is!) but it was still vitally important to their development and sense of security. You knocked it out of the park Mom. Good job! My mother never had time to sit and play with us kids growing up. She worked 2 jobs and so did my dad. We knew we were loved but I just wanted to play with Barbies with her. She tried, she really did, there was just always too much to do. I was never going to be that parent but guess what? I was. I played when I could but ever really felt available to spend that much time at it. Always my mind was on something else that I should be doing or getting done. As a grandparent I have the luxury of hindsight over what’s important but also I don’t have her 24/7 so I always know there is time for the other stuff later. I wouldn’t stress over it too much. Your kids won’t feel you lacking as a mother if you didn’t spend a bunch of time playing with them. Be there for them where it matters and they’ll remember. Much love my friend.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Beautiful smiles there of you and your child. I agree when we focus on what we don’t want to become or traits with which we grew up that we don’t want to carry on into our own motherhood, that we tend to attract these behaviors. But I strongly believe it doesn’t have to be this way, paying for the sins of earlier generations.

    Liked by 1 person

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