Celebrating our Mothers

Yesterday was Mother’s Day and while I didn’t celebrate with my mother I will be next weekend.
The bond between a mother and her daughter is a difficult phenomenon to describe. I find it easier to explain the love for my father with your typical colloquialisms like being a daddy’s girl, always having daddy wrapped around your little finger, those types of things. But I find it ironic that there are none of those colloquia’s exist for a daughter’s love for her mother. I get it. The way of the world is that mothers and daughters squabble and fight, and trust me, my mother and I have had plenty a battle. It was always one of will, who could out-power the other. In the end I learned my place in the pecking order and for a long time I hated my mother because it was always like she was one step ahead of me. My dad always took her side, they were always united. I hated her for being so different from me.

I have grown up a lot since middle and high school and have learned about my mother. I don’t think we really know our parents until we move away from them. I have learned that my mother is a fighter, a warrior in her own right. She hasn’t lived a life full of nothing but rainbows and lollipops, she had fought for place in the world as a woman, a mother, a sister, a daughter, and one serious force to be reckon with. I love my mother. Again, it is that indescribable phenomenon that happens between a daughter and her mother. I grew up to learn that the choices my mother made with me shaped and molded the women who I have become. I have had numerous people tell me I have been so strong this past year, have been strong willed my whole life, never took crap from anyone, but loved with a burning passion. That is because of my mother. Kindest to the smallest of creatures. Beautiful. Tough. Strong willed. Outspoken. Always laughing. Crying when it is appropriate to cry.

My mother instilled in me to love people, no matter how different. Every one deserves a second (and sometimes third) chance. She taught me to fight for what I believe in. My mother taught me how to live, leaving my mark everywhere I go. She valued education and always encouraged me in that motherly way to get an education (either live with her at home and work or go to school, back then I thought well, that leaves one option!), she taught me to spread my wings and fly. And I did just that. But every time I have a broken wing my mother is there to try her best to fix it. She still kisses boo boos and has helped mend my heart the many times it has been broken. As I learn more about my mother, the differences I so fiercely believed divided us like an ocean grows smaller and smaller, because I learn that she and I are so alike. While our paths may be different, our end game is the same. Live a life with a balance of good times and struggles, because it the struggles that have made my mother the steadfast women she is today. Without her downs, she wouldn’t have her ups and that is reflective for me. Fill your  home with love and laughter and things that remind you of where you came from. Be humble, never follow the urge to discover new things about yourself.

I struggled my first week of college. I thought I was such a badass, ready to be away from my nest. I quickly fell to tears, hated my roommate and wanted to go home. My mom has told me since that she so badly wanted to rescue me but knew she couldn’t. Knew this was the time to let me go, let me struggle through it. I am grateful now she didn’t save me, because I didn’t need it.

On love. I had the luxury of my parents being married growing up and who are still married today. I put their marriage to the test as most children do. I watched them love each other, be tender to one another. I watched my father demand nothing more than for my mother to be happy and be exactly who she is. He never asked her to change who she was. I watched my mother support my father in every career move he made, and they made all of their life choices together. That united front I hated so much, it is so clear to me now why they did that. Because they had to. They are partners and every choice they made, they made together. My parents taught me what it was like to live in a real marriage, a real partnership. I can proudly say that Matt and I have been together for almost eight years and it is because we both lucky enough to watch both sets of our parents love the hell out of each other growing up. We came together with a defined interpretation of what a partnership means. My father taught me what to expect as a women finding a partner and my mother taught me what to expect from a partner.

While my mother and I still have our differences, our similarities far outshine our differences. She raised me to be an independent thinker and I am happy now at twenty five that I distinguish my perception of my mother at fifteen to my perception of my mother at twenty five. Some of my friends envy the relationship I have with my mother. Because as I grow older we are building a friendship.

She will always be my mother. A fierce mama bear. Always ready to pounce on anyone intending to hurt her cub. Matt’s mom takes care of her mother who is getting older and a little weaker and it reminds me that I will not always have my mother. It takes my breathe away to even have to imagine navigating this world without my mama. But I know I will because she has raised me to be an adult, a women who stand on her own two feet and make good choices. My mother has given me a gift that no one can, and that is taught me to be a woman. She helped me navigate through those awkward preteen years, taught me what to do when I started to date, taught me that broken hearts can always be mended, and love is never really lost.

So this is to you mom. My beautiful mother who fought tooth and nail just to have me. I hope that what I have done so far in my life has made you proud. I can’t describe the love that I have for you, but I know a simple colloquialism won’t cut it, because the love between a mother and a daughter is so deep that slapping a simile on a card would never enable me to tell you what I feel for you.

I am blessed.

I love you.

Happy Mother’s Day.

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Yes mom, I know you didn’t like my dark hair! ha ha Love you!!

Take Back the Night 2013

I had the opportunity to help plan a Take Back the Night event with the organization I volunteer for. It is such a wonderful organization – Saint Croix Valley Sexual Assault Response Team Inc. It is really a celebration of the strongest men and women who walk among us, sexual assault victims and is a way to remind our communities that we are not going to tolerate sexual violence. Take Back the Night started decades ago when Jack the Ripper was terrorizing women in London and their were sanctions for women to stay inside after dark. It events migrated to the U.S. and now there are thousands held every year, typically during the month of April – Sexual Assault Awareness month!

We had a rad time, with a rally, march downtown, and a candle light vigil where so many brave souls stood up to share their story, most of them for the first time. It was such a beautiful experience again this year. I have attached some pics!DSCN1186DSCN1195 DSCN1201 DSCN1206 DSCN1212 DSCN1215

Half a 5K!!

Some exciting news!

In April 2012 my father, Matt’s mom, and I walked a 5K for women’s rights. When I was laying in the hospital, Matt’s mom reassured me that we would doing the 5K April 2013 and I laughed and thought never in a million years. Well folks, on April 20, 2013 THIS GIRL walked one lap (about 1.67 miles) and felt fantastic.

I reached the finish line and jumped into Matt’s arms and immediately started crying. Everyone was so happy and proud, but no one more proud than myself. It was a beautiful reminder that I can get better. I can and will beat this. And you can too!!

 

walk After walkwalk tag

Update and Tidbits

Alas, I am back from my hiatus. We had some major weather patterns move through here in the past few weeks and it took everything out of me. On top of that I have been having some heart palpitations. Sheesh.

I have been reading comments and things you are sending me and I am touched that my words are so far reaching and I am doing what I intended to do with this blog. Educate and share my story.

Meniere’s Disease isn’t easy. It has almost been one year that I have been suffering with my left ear. I know I have shared how Meniere’s can mess with your mind. How it seeps from your ears to your mind and slowly takes control of how you think, feel, act, perceive. Thoughts trickle from unknown places and your mind plays tricks on you. I was recently talking with a friend about how you make yourself silly promises to get through the day. If you get up and do physical therapy for ten minutes you can have a popsicle, if you take a shower you can skip doing the dishes. Meniere’s slows you down on your slow days, but it sometimes feels like crack on days you feel good.

You race around the house trying to think of everything you haven’t gotten done. Dust the light fixtures, scrub the walls, wash the curtains, pay bills, brush your teeth for the two minutes the Dentist recommends, brush your hair, shower, get the mail, rush, rush, rush you don’t know when it’s going to hit you again. Call Grandmas, smile when Matt gets home, smile while you dust, smile while you make dinner, smile when you go to the grocery store. Rush, rush, rush. Smile, smile, smile.

You beg for those days, you plead with God, you ask favors of yourself and make promises. Then BAM it hits you and everything comes to a screeching halt.

It has been a year and I feel know that my family and friends are getting tired of the anger, the pissy days, the days when you just want to thrash around, cry, you feel like you’re falling into the rabbit hole and are gripping to the world, dirt under your nails, clenching to what isn’t spinning around you. It isn’t that they avoid you, it’s just that they hold their breath around you. Waiting for you to pop off, waiting to sit and watch helplessly as you somehow fall off the floor. I know how it feels to have Meniere’s Disease, but I do not know what it is like to be with someone like myself when it is happening. Before and the months immediately following my surgery I would beg Matt to help me. The look in his eyes is something I will never forget. He looked at me like a suffering animal. I hate myself for asking that of him, he can’t fix me. He would if he could, but we both know he can’t and I don’t know how I would handle watching him suffer like that. I am glad that those days are fewer and farther between then they were, he knows my ‘oh boy it just hit me and it’s a doozie sigh’ and just waits it out like floor waters slowly recessing.

In the last few months I have been able to read more and more. One of my favorite authors in John Sandford, who I recently was able to meet at a book signing that my parents and Matt took me too. I know that everyone in the room loved his writing, felt a connection to it, but no one knew my secret, that his writing was my escape. When I read, any book, with especially his I am able to leave where I am and can be anyone I want to be. When I met him I told him I had been sick and thanked him for being my escape. There were too many people, but I wanted him to understand that he was too, a part of my therapy.

I hope that this post finds all of you happy, healthy, and dizzy free. Please remember that even though I may not see you, or know you, you are never alone in this. No matter what you are feeling, it is OK to feel that way. I love you all.