It's Mother's Day

Mother's Day is great, it's an opportunity to thank your mother for taking care of you for all those years and raising you to be the wonderful person you are today. For those of us who have young children it is the day when we get a rest, perhaps not all day but the kids will, at least, give you 10 minutes peace to drink that cup of tea while it’s still hot! I look forward to Mother's Day but there is a small part of me that hates it.

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My mother and I haven't spoken in about 4 years and before that contact with her was sporadic. When I was 16 years old she chose to send me out into the harsh reality of life without her guidance. I don't know what I did wrong and sometimes I still wonder. For a very long time I found it difficult to even think of her, I had such hatred and malice in my heart that every time I thought of her I wanted to cry. I could never understand what I'd done to deserve the abandonment and what hurt more is that my two sisters saw her all the time (and still do).

Since the divorce of my parents my mother has given me many reasons to dislike her but the worst thing was being ignored. When I had children I hoped that would change... it didn't. It took her two weeks to come and see my first child and that was the only time she saw him as a baby, she hasn't even met my youngest, who is nearly 4. In the end I couldn't allow her to hurt my children the way she hurt me and eventually (after being disappointed too often) I cut all ties with her. Being a mother myself I can’t imagine not seeing my grandchildren, come to think of it, I can't imagine not seeing my children ever! 

So when Mother's Day is coming around I get low, I wonder what life would be like if I had a mother who came to see me all the time and spoilt my children like grandparents often do. I imagine being able to turn to my mother when I need a night off and I wonder if I should call her. Then I remember all the heartache and slap myself for even thinking it.

When I was fourteen my father moved away and remarried and I had a 'stepmother' thrust upon me. Unfortunately, at the time, she faced the consequences of the hatred I felt for my mother. I blamed her for everything that was going wrong and refused to listen to her, I was mean and disrespectful. A typical teenager. She hadn't done anything wrong, she loved my father and married him. Yet through all of that she coped, she didn’t ask me to leave, she didn’t tell me I was awful, she stuck by me and my father, just like a loving wife and mother should. 

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Years on and a mother myself, I look back and realise I will never be able to do enough to show her how sorry I am for those years, all I can do is thank her for being there. She was the constant, along with my father, that I needed. She put up with a lot from me and I'm sure at times she wanted to give up but I'm glad she didn't. That is the mark of a good mother. Going through all the rubbish times and seeing it through to the other side, where, if you're lucky, your children have children of their own and want you to spoil them. My father and stepmother live far away and I don’t get to see them as much as I’d like, only getting over in the school holidays, but I love that they are wonderful grandparents to my boys.

In my opinion, when you have children you are dedicating your life to take care of them. It is not a job that you can do for a while and then give up because it's 'hard’, you're a parent for life. I would never dream of turning my back on my children, I want them to know I will be there, always and when I'm a grandmother and doting on my grandchildren, just like my stepmother does, I'll be able to look back and be proud of the decisions I made.

Thank you Mandy, you’re the best replacement mum I could have hoped for and you’ve taught me what a good mother is. You’re the best xxx