Sometimes it eats at me…the sickening anxiety producing guilt & dread that comes after a couple weeks of not seeing mom. I usually get there about once a week, but ocassionaly I let life get in the way.
I know it’s been almost about 10 days, when I feel myself getting more distracted, tense, & sad. By day 14, I know it has been to long. So I go…mostly out of duty, or so it seems. But really, once I get there, I am so glad I went. It feels right & fulfilling, especially if I bring the kids. We always make her day…& week. No pressure in being someone’s everything, all the time. Ha ha.
It feels sort of like excersise. It is hard to get over all your silly self sabotaging mind blocks to actually get your but to the gym, but once your done with the workout, you feel pretty good. Well, most times. Because Sometimes, it really sucks. You know, to exert all that time & energy, & then not have anything to show for it (externally or immediately, anyway)
When you are a “sandwich” generation mom, like me (a term for those of us who are caring for young kids and ailing aging parents) you get used to dealing with various feelings of guilt & stress. It is difficult to maintain a balance of caring for ALL, not to mention, trying to successfully care for yourself.
After a couple of really great, productive fun weeks or week with my kids, I continue to carry around that nagging dark little voice…ignoring it the best I can. “Mom is fading away…& you’re not there” “She is dying of disease &loneliness, where are you?” “What if she dies this week, & you didn’t even find the time to visit. Nice.”
The voices vary in degree of intensity, depending on my mood. I know part of it results from being an adult child of an alcoholic. As a ACOA you learn to master (so you think) the rough waters of blame & self loathing. You learn to ride through the dark waves with your protective armor of truths guiding you. The little self manta encouagments reasuring me, “You are doing what you can” You are a good mother…NO, you are a GREAT one” “You are giving your kids what she never could…the truth” and on & on & on & on & on…
I tend to stick with the eternal truths though…as they are more lasting & calming. Like, “Do not be afraid, I am with you”, “You can do all things through Him who gives you strength” & of course a time tested favorite,
“Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 4:6-7)
And of course, being a Catholic, the Divine Mercy Chaplet & the Rosary are my saving graces (literally).
“For the sake of his most sorrowful passion, have mercy of us & on the whole world…”
Repeated over & over again, 10 times in between saying,
I offer you the Body and Blood,
Soul and Divinity,
of Your Dearly Beloved Son,
Our Lord, Jesus Christ,
in atonement for our sins
and those of the whole world.”
It is recited using Rosary beads.
Here is a link to how to pray the whole thing (takes about 10 min)
At times I go through my “whatever, it’s just to much work” stages with prayer, like I do with excersise, & pretty much most everything else in my life, that requires a ton of discipline & focus.
That is when I try to make it simple…like repeating, “Jesus, have mercy” or during really awesome times with my kids & husband I silently tell God, “Thank you, thank you, thank you. For this. Right now. Things tiny but huge gifts in my life.”
Or I will go & just sit in the chapel & be. No formal prayers…just me and Him & all that I give Him. And the peace I always get in return.
Hands down , every time, when I feel distant from God or others, it is because I haven’t prayed, or have not searched out enough quiet time to meditate & reconnect.
WelL, I am off to do a little more procrastinating, avoiding “the home”, appease my guilt & buy a too expensive bouquet of vintage roses for mom (she LOVES flowers), feed my kids (myself if I remember), workout (ha ha ha),
then visit mom!
Oh…& try to squeeze a bit of prayer time in there to 🙂
Have a blessed day