Today I had to make a tough decision.
I had to decide whether to avoid confrontation with the Daughter by pretending everything was okay or address a situation and express my difference of opinion.
I chose to do the latter.
Confrontation is never easy.
For the most part, some of us decide it’s not worth the heartache or the angst.
Nevertheless, there are times when we realize that in choosing to ignore what’s troubling us, we also pave the way for problems to fester; to escalate.
It’s been two weeks since the Daughter last called.
Some mothers may not think this is a big deal.
I’m not one of those mothers.
I remember the first time I heard the song, “Cats in the cradle.”
I must have been twelve years old at the time.
I recall thinking that in the song, the reason the son turned into his father was because it was what he learned; his father’s lack of attention taught him to be an absent son.
Even at that young age, I knew that when the time came for me to have children, I did not want to be like the father in the song.
And true to my word, I have been a dedicated mother who has always put her children first.
It is for this very reason that I refuse to be put in a corner.
I refuse to be ignored, dismissed, put on hold.
I have certain expectations of my children, even if they are adults.
This morning, I took a deep breath before answering the Daughter’s phone call.
After saying hello, I told her in a calm but emphatic manner how she cannot ignore her mother; how a mother deserves more than just left over time.
I told her it’s not okay to take life for granted and think that I will be alive and well to take her call whenever.
I mentioned that while life can leave us feeling exhausted and drained, we have to make time for the people we love.
This weekend my mother informed me that a friend of the family died in a car crash.
He drove to the bakery to buy bread and coffee and on his way home, experienced low blood sugar and slammed into a tree.
He died three hours later from internal injuries.
Indeed, life is short.
We don’t know how long we have to live.
We don’t know if today will be our last.
It’s because of this that I refuse to allow the Daughter to wait two weeks before she calls; before
I hear her voice and she hears mine.
Yes, today I chose confrontation.
Because sometimes a mother has to be tough.
Because at times a mother has to create awareness before it’s too late.
And because I was never like the father in the song.
The rule of reciprocity will be put in effect because some day the Daughter will also be a mother who wants to hear her child’s voice.
Because some day she too will ache to hear her child ask, “How are you, mom?”
Today I could have chosen to act like nothing was wrong; to justify her absence for lack of time; but I didn’t.
And while this morning’s telephone conversation may have resulted in a bit of upset, it also served to establish the importance of communication.
I want to believe that today’s conversation was more than my “filing a complaint.”
It was my way of reminding the Daughter to be the thoughtful and caring woman I’ve always known her to be.
Note: Roxy’s photo has nothing to do with today’s post. However, I did want to start off your week with a little Roxy love.