It's healing for me to reread old letters from my mom before bed. Immersing myself in her words, she comes alive again.
I wake, step out into my gentle woods, put out my compost, and talk to what I think of as my greater mother about my new concerns.
I'm taking her advice more seriously now. I think what SHE would like is for her caring to reach beyond me and comfort you too, if you need it.
Here is a consoling letter she sent to me in 1999. Judy also had just suffered a shock. Her husband Mike was in a serious rollover car accident. Mike's arm was crushed. My mom took on the job of typing up his school notes--he was a history professor. This injury brought them together more over the years, I see now in retrospect, as he needed her secretarial skills, and the stimulation was great for her mind which was just starting to be attacked by frontotemporal dementia.
Even though she had suffered a shock, she was consoling me, here.
I had pinned my hopes on getting a job that an administrator crafted with me in mind, as a full-time tenure track chemistry professor, but it went to someone else. My boss was in tears that I didn't get this job, I was left adrift on an adjunct salary, running myself ragged to make ends meet. (A year later I got a similar position at another college so it all worked out.) My car engine died and I had a long commute to teach. I had just given a star gazing party for a grade school and in the process of pulling little hands off my lenses all night, in my early 30's, contracted chicken pox, presumably from one of those little hands, and was unable to work or travel for a week.
Things seem so much easier now. I have a loving, supportive spouse, security, health. I would like deeper connections with like-minded friends. I would like my recent novel to find an agent. We all want our voices to be heard. I'm sure I'm not alone in this.
Here is what my mom wrote to me, and perhaps to you, in 1999:
The main thing is that you do have strength and resources within yourself
that you may not be completely aware of yet, but when the need arises you
can find them. And don't sell yourself short! You are worthy of a good
job and good pay.
It all doesn't happen right away, tho. There is a time of grief and
anger, and its good you're not denying that to yourself. Stay with your
feelings, and maybe journal write or talk with someone good who listens
well. It all can work out for the best, but it may may also take some
time, and willingness to try something different, creative thinking is
needed here, but know the resources ARE there!
Within and around you. I don't know where the money will come from, nor do you - that's God's
problem. Just tell her what you need, and let Her figure it out.
I love you. Mom
Can I adopt your mother? I love her messages and you are lucky to have them. Thx for sharing.
Posted by: Sarah Benedict | 10/21/2022 at 03:58 PM