The silhouette of a warrior woman with storm clouds in the background.
Green dogs don’t make good mothers.
I am a bad mother. I admit it freely. I should be ashamed of myself, but I’m afraid I’m not. Shame is a life sucking emotion and I have little time for life suckers, whatever type they are.
I am a bad mother because I expect my sons to live without me. I demand that they live as they see fit and I will cheer them on. Or give them a good kick in the pants, if need be. I am after all the woman who carried them for nine months, birthed them and then went on to perform the quadruple somersault, backwards, no hands and blindfolded, of raising them. I won the right to speak my mind to them, whether they like it or not, the moment they started wailing at me after ten or fourteen hours of labour.
That, however, doesn’t mean that they owe me anything except talking to me like a human, just like I talk to them. I am tempted not to when they behave like snotty know-it-alls, but I manage to control myself.
I am a bad mother because I embarked on this lifelong project knowing full well that it was not for myself for whom I was raising my boys. I was raising them for the world, so that they could improve it. Just waiting to see the outcome of all my efforts, my sleepless nights, the blood sweat and tears, is enough motivation to keep going. The future awaits! Will they be the next Nobel winner for physics? Or will they be the best bagpiper to grace this paradise that is Asturias? Or perhaps the next great Spanish chef? I look at them from out of the corner of my eye when they’re distracted and try to disguise my joy and pride and wonder at being at least partially responsible for their uniqueness.
I am a bad mother because in spite of everything, I only expect the best from them: to be good men and happy, in whatever way they choose. There are enough people being steered in the wrong direction by those who say they love them. That won’t be me. I’ve been steered, shushed and told how inadequate my views and ideas, and indeed my self was. I decided that the cycle ends with me. I don’t want them to waste as much time as I have trying to find their voice and leave behind the doubts.
I am a bad mother because I never warned them how bad the world was and how awful people were. Instead, I showed them that if they have confidence in people, most people will prove to be trustworthy. Prudence, by all means. Fear, as little as needs be.
Green dogs, as I said, don’t make good mothers because we are far too busy watching the stars twinkle in our babies’ eyes and wanting them to laugh that way just once more, like when we invent lullabies out of three different songs and instead of looking at us with disapproval, we get the most radiant smile. Ah, yes…Green Dogs are loyal to those who think our wyrdness is kinda nice.
That’s not all … no, there’s still more.
I am a bad daughter. I am a bad daughter because I never lived up to expectations. In fact, I always tried my damnedest to ignore them. I demanded time alone to think, which I seldom got. Sometimes I wonder if I was denied that time purposely to keep me from figuring out my truth. I have always been determined to be me, whoever that is. When I figure it out, you’ll be first to know.
I am a bad daughter because I always understood that my parents weren’t infallible, therefore I always took my life into my hands. If I make a mistake, it’s me that makes it. It’s better to learn from your mistakes than to live an easy life on someone else’s terms. Better doesn’t mean easier, just so you know. Sometimes I’ve wished for a dash more conventionality but, alas, ’tis not to be.
I am a bad daughter because I don’t see my parents as heroes. They are just human. They made mistakes and handled life as best they knew…like the rest of us.
I am a bad daughter because I don’t feel the ‘joy’ in caring for my mother with dementia -although she IS quite funny sometimes. I feel the uneasiness and guilt and sadness of watching her slip away a little more each day, becoming less and less the energetic woman that I knew as my mother, and more a spoilt three year old who can really push my buttons and then hurl me into a fit of guilty tears.
What I am is a good fighter, in spite of myself. I am not a quitter but a doer. I am a giver more than a taker. I am wacky and not very good at spatially orienting myself. I am a good organiser and motivator. I am a chef who can’t follow a recipe. I’d rather improvise. My improvisations fall into two main categories: the Absolute Biggest Mess Ever Seen, or This Should Be On Every Menu In Every Restaurant, Gosh It’s Good!
I am not what you would expect when you meet me. I don’t know if it’s good or not.
I guess that is the core of being a Green Dog. You can only say I’m human, because I mess up times enough, but it’s not quite an easy task to put me in a box to make it easier for you to understand.
I recommend you just give up, have some tea or chocolate and call it a day.
PS: This is my post nº 100! Happy to be going forward. Thanks to all my readers.