Thursday, May 24, 2012

Seventy Two

My mother will be 72 on Saturday. Her assessment of me hasn't changed much in the nearly two years since I wrote "Skimming the Surface".  The biggest change to our relationship is my brother's return from prison. He, as always, permeates the family dynamic. Her call to thank me for the hand-crafted, personalized birthday card I sent, wound up being about him and his upcoming (reported--kinda like the boy who cried wolf) nuptials. Never-the-less, complicated or not, I wish my mother the happiest of days. 

My mother has decided that I’m complicated. Nothing I say or do can dissuade her from that assessment. In fact, everything I say or do, seems to serve to solidify the opinion she has come to in the past year or so since I came out to her.

She is either unable or unwilling to expound on that which renders me complicated. So, I can only speculate.

I suspect that the “complicated” tag transcends my sexuality.  I suspect that my mother is finally struggling to know who I am after all these years. I suspect that she has come to realize that our relationship for most of my life merely skimmed the surface of the who of us. That we never delved beyond the obvious or the mundane. I suspect she has come to believe that I do not espouse all her values. 

I suspect that said belief makes her extremely uneasy.

The eight years leading into and now the few out of my lesbian-flavored epiphany are all about discovery. I’d spent so many years prior hiding, suppressing, denying, and comporting myself to align ever-so-carefully with what I thought others wanted, that I cast barely a shadow of any authenticity. I walked the walk and talked the talk that everyone expected. Carefully coloring my life within the lines. In my mind, to do otherwise conscripted me to a lifetime of pain and suffering, in line with the messages delivered to me during my early years.

I suspect that she doesn’t believe me when I say, “I’m fine.” I suspect she believes our relationship is tenuous at best and non-existent at worst. I suspect that each time we disagree she believes it will be the last time we speak. I suspect she is afraid. She is afraid that I don’t love her (enough), that I don’t care (enough), that I don’t have (enough) in me to do what she’ll require as she loses more and more of her self-sufficiency. I suspect she doesn’t want that burden for me and me alone. I suspect she’s most afraid that we’ll run out of time, that we won’t be able to repair the mistakes of the past.

These years have been about discovery. I’ve discovered that I’m intensely fierce with my love.  I’ve discovered that my authenticity hasn’t and won’t bring the world to a crashing end. I’ve discovered that my mother is troubled. I’ve discovered it isn’t all about me. I’ve discovered that I can’t fix her; I can love, assist, and try to encourage her, to the best of my ability.  I’ve discovered that troubled or no, she is much stronger than she realizes. I’ve discovered that she supports me, complications and all.

She is either unable or unwilling to expound on that which renders me complicated. So, I can only speculate.

I suspect that the “complicated” tag transcends my sexuality and further that all the discoveries will ultimately lead to a happier, more fulfilled rest of each of our lives.

*As Published in Our Big Gayborhood 

Thursday, May 10, 2012


Paper everywhere. Not confetti-like pieces scattered about willy-nilly, but large newsprint sized sheets. Someone had placed these sheets in a serendipitous fashion; some clearly to soaking the results of past accidents while others lie in wait of accidents to come.  

Thus was the beginning of a dream, a story, that has since been long lost. Out of my head, my mind, my bones, just g-o-n-e. Blown away into the details of day-to-day.  And oh, has there been a mountain of day-to-day. 


Work has been and has felt much more like w-o-r-k I don't know how much longer we can go or more to the point, how much longer I should go . . . on and on. Decisions about, preparations for the possible next step(s).  


The actor is in a play and has been busy, busy, and even more busy. He's come home with stories of the production, the cast, the import of the work. I have yet the see the show(s) (the play is actually two plays performed in rep) but will get my opportunity a week from Saturday and then again two weeks from Friday. I try to follow his example and ignore the reviews but I can't. 


The daughter is working steadily at a job she seems to really like and as important, they really like her. She's continuing her education toward enhancing her skills and advancement possibilities at work and beyond. But the other side of the coin, the personal relationship? Not so winning. Here's to her heart syncing with her head toward allowing her to move away, onward from the current main squeeze. 


And then there is the rest; mom, brother(s) dad, cousins, aunts, uncles and all the related day-to-day. Or rather, my thoughts and possible action and/or reaction to the various day-to-day. 


My personal relationship is moving right along. She and I are dancing metaphorically (though we do plan to dance, literally, at some point) doing the relationship foxtrot, feeling are way along to wherever, forev....well, we're moving right along. Bring on date night(s).