A grandparent asked me this at a home visit yesterday. I quickly mulled over possible responses (Well, my mom’s dead, and despite thousands of dollars and the most invasive reproductive technology available, I can’t have a baby…so, yeah, it was awesome) before responding with a lame, “It was fine,” and quickly changing the subject to how her Mother’s Day was.
I don’t remember if this woman had ever asked me directly whether or not I have children. Maybe she just assumes a woman of a certain age, wearing a ring on her left hand, does. Especially one who chose the profession I chose. And, of course, she couldn’t know about my own mother. She was just trying to be polite–probably–but it was one of those moments that stung. The assumptions. The invasiveness of a question that seems, on the surface, so innocent. Not having the “right” answer. I wonder if she noticed my moment of hesitation. I wonder if it occurs to her that other women might not enjoy a day when mothers are placed on a pedestal.
At a home visit today, I noticed a bouquet of flowers on the table and intentionally bit my tongue. Without my asking, this mom went on and on about her Mother’s Day: the flowers, the card, getting her nails done, the dinner, the cake. Granted, this is a mom who has a cognitive impairment and tends to repeat herself. But it was a bit much.
I had thought, by Sunday evening, that I had escaped unscathed. That I had survived with relative peace a day that, in the past, has been anything but peaceful for me.
But Mother’s Day didn’t end on Sunday, apparently.
You know what? Not gonna let it get me down. At the suggestion of the lovely ladyblogalot, I’m gonna cheer myself up with song. I read a few lines in Buddha’s Brain that I just loved:
As the sense of groundlessness grows, each apparently individual thing seems a bit like a cloud that you’ll fall through if you try to stand on it. At first this is pretty unnerving. But then you realize that the sky itself–the totality–is holding you up. You are walking on the sky because you’re sky. It has always been that way. You and every one else have been sky all along (p. 221).
With that in mind, please to enjoy 80s pop in all its glory.