The “Mother Figure”
Have you ever felt that despite your genetic connection,the person you thought you had known so well was a complete stranger. That phenomenon describes my relationship with my mother.
We share the same physical features of small eyes and a petite frame. That is where our similarities end. She was a college educated “stay at home” mother. She never drove and never returned to work; even when she was capable of doing so and the kids had grown. She maintained a “perfect” demeanor and there was never a hair out of place or a piece of lint to be found on the floor. Our home was immaculate; with that said it was also void of warmth. We were four people coexisting in a small suburban ranch home.
Each of us had our escape mechanisms and used them. My mother used cleaning and organizing as a replacement for true connection. My father worked overtime as a teacher and coach. My sister was a musician and generally aloof; or acted as much. As for me, I was hyper- sensitive to all of it. I was the peacemaker and the “easy one”. I followed the rules and didn’t raise my voice; until years later when I finally did.
With the onset of adulthood, I began teaching, had a child, was married, divorced and remained in the vicinity of my parents home. My sister obtained her doctoral degree and moved to France; where she still resides. My father died this past year and my mother is alone. She had spent years complaining about my father’s difficult nature; perhaps she is happy now that she has received what she had asked for. I cannot say for sure; because we really do not “know” or understand one another.