MamaBlogger365 – When My Mom Was Missing by Kate Fineske, NAMC

OK, so my mom technically never went missing.
Yet she did “leave” me a few weeks ago, which led me to this post. Here, let me explain…

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I had a bad day last week. It was a long, never-ending day of errands, and appointments, and Valentine’s Day parties, and soccer games, and music classes, and… completing all the other things that I also do in any ordinary day.

Yep. ONE. LONG. DAY.

All I truly wanted to do was complain.
(You’ve had those types of days as a parent, right?)

And what I really wanted (as trivial as this may sound) was to feel validated for all the work that I was doing on that busy, run-around, live-in-my-car, barely-time-to-eat day.

But nobody wants to hear my complaints. Nobody wants to hear my ridiculous to-do list. And I’m confident that nobody (except myself!) is able to validate my need to feel valued and accomplished. Nobody really understands what I’m going through.

Nobody except for maybe…

My own mom.

So of course, what did I do? I picked-up the phone and called my mom – the only person who I am certain would listen to me complain without judgement. And immediately I felt just a little bit better. (Not stress-less, but better.)

That’s What Moms Are For…

My mom is almost always just a phone call away. For example:

I’m having a bad day. Call my mom.
I’m bored. Call my mom.
I’m not sure what to blog about…

Call my mom!

(Are you beginning to see a pattern?)

The kids have been fighting all day. Call my mom.
My husband is giving the kids a bath. Call my mom.
I’m on the way to my Mothers’ Center meeting. Yep, you got it! Call my mom.

That’s what moms are for, right? To be there when you need them? And I really didn’t recognize my overwhelming reliance on her “motherly ear” until just a few weeks ago – when she “left me” to take a much deserved week long cruise through the Carribean.

A Week Without Mom

The first day my mom “went missing” from the other side of the phone I was surprised.

Monday – Every Monday I drive 25 minutes to work and (almost) every Monday on my way to work I call my mom. I will hop in my car, put my hands free headset on and dial her cell just before I pull out of my garage, except this time – I couldn’t.

And for a moment I was a little shocked and I had a tinge of disappointment. But eventually…

I got over it.

The second day my mom “went missing” I’ll admit I was a little more, well… annoyed (for lack of a better word).

Tuesday – It was mid-morning and my toddler had just finished his 2-year well-check with his pediatrician. When we returned home from the appointment I began to dial my mom to tell her how healthy her grandson was but again …

Ugh. I couldn’t.

I was (admittedly) a little annoyed, and instead I called my husband.

Around midway through the week was about the time when her absence really hit me…

Wednesday – My husband started a new job.
Thursday – My toddler got sick.
Friday – I went on a quick business trip.

So many things were going on in my life – things I am used to being able to share with my mom. It was very apparent to me that something – wait, no someone (aka my mom!) – was missing from my life. And I wondered briefly if she missed talking to me too…

So finally the day arrived:

Saturday – I anxiously called my mom upon receiving notice that she was off the ship and on her way home. I thought of how MUCH I had to fill her in on about my past week!

Ring, Ring.
Hello?
Hi Mom!

And suddenly, the long list of things that I wanted to share with her slipped away. I no longer needed to tell her about my week, instead I asked her something that in the future I realize I need to remember to ask more often…

How was your week?

As much as I love having someone who will always listen unconditionally to me about my good days, my bad days, my big life experiences and my everyday irrelevant events … I also love to listen to her daily successes and disappointments.

And in this moment I suddenly became aware of something significant – the week my mom went missing was also the week that I realized that my mom was no longer just my mother, somewhere along the way, she also became…

My friend.

And it gives me hope, that someday my daughter will also be my friend.

Leave a Comment. Who do you lean on for support when you’re having a bad day? As the years pass by, do you notice that your relationships with your own parents have changed?

My mother and I together on a cruise last summer.
(The way it should be – I’m so done with this going-on-cruises-for-a-week-without-me thing!)

 

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This post has been contributed on behalf of The National Association of Mothers Centers, whose mission is to create a community of women, who through mutual support and public advocacy, explore, enrich and value the maternal experience.

The post author, Kate Fineske, currently is a staff member with the National Association of Mothers’ Centers where she maintains and provides the content to the Mothers Central Blog – the Parenting Blog of the NAMC. She is also responsible for helping the NAMC work to build stronger connections and support with the local Mothers’ Center Chapters nationally.

Kate is a longtime member of the National Association of Mothers’ Centers through her local chapter of the Mothers’ Center of Greater Toledo in Ohio. She and her husband are busy raising 3 children ages 1-8. Kate’s professional background is as a graphic designer in the creative and education industry. Since 2005, she has been using her professional skills by actively volunteering with the Mothers’ Center of Greater Toledo in various leadership positions. She also blogs personally at http://www.onthegomomma.net.

You can connect with Kate via Twitter (@katefineske) and/or also connect with the NAMC via twitter (@MothersCenters) or Facebook.

The Museum Of Motherhood is the first and only facility of its kind, celebrating the “her”story of mothers around the world. We need your help — please make your tax-deductible contribution today!Visit the Museum of Motherhood, NOW OPEN in NYC – Tues.-Sun., 10:45-6:30.
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