Friday, August 13, 2010

this is why my brain hurts

this week has been...full. the first two days were tree removal-squirrel rescue stuff. throughout the week i have had freelance work. i am incredibly grateful for freelance work. however, trying to write/edit/be creative while the kids are sitting around bored and errands need running and meals cooked and a house needs cleaned is harder than you'd think. i have not mastered this particular juggling feat just yet.

and, this particular freelance job is not my norm. my friend big t sent one of her friends to me--the friend needs help putting together a newsletter. i fluffed and edited her copy w/out a problem. piecing together a newsletter template? yeah, graphic i am not. template savvy i am not. right about now i would love to gouge my eyes out w/ this thing.

but there is more. i've been hinting about how the hubs has been pushing me to decide exactly what kind of relationship i need to have w/ my parents to be able to live with myself. essentially he is incredibly worried that if/when something were to happen to them that i would forever be riddled w/ regrets and guilt, regardless of how i feel right this very moment. even though he was not arguing w/ his mom or brother when they died, he is still so full of remorse and regret over things he didn't do, time he didn't spend. he does not want this for me.

we have had this conversation off and on a lot over the last few months. i am still not able to answer his question of what i want/expect/envision from them. frankly, i've enjoyed these months of no contact/drama.

about a week ago my mom initiated contact by sending the kids cards w/ some money. there was money for them to blow and then money they were to give to us to spend on school stuff. that night the kids called and thanked her for their blow money and then the hubs talked to her. he said we were returning the school supply money. (we'd already gone school shopping and plus, we didn't want their money) she said don't. they talked. i won't bore you w/ the play by play but she basically said that as much as she wants to see the grandkids she wants relationships w/ her kids too. the hubs said that whatever relationship she and i ever decided to have is up to us but that he is done.

nudge nudge nudge from the hubs. i tried to write an email to my mom. i did a few drafts. none of them sounded right. probably because even now i do not know what i want, i only know what i don't want. i don't want them up my ass. i do not want her to think we are now bffs. i do not want to hang out with them. the only thing i am sure of is that we cannot rehash what has happened. we have done that too many times in the past and nothing ever comes of it. nothing gets resolved.

then mom emailed to see if she could take the kids to lunch and next thing i know i have said that the kids and i would go to lunch w/ her. and we did. today. it was fine. i told her ahead of time that none of our issues were to be discussed. that we were basically starting from square one. we'd each have to deal w/ our feelings/lingering issues/emotions on our own.

this evening the hubs asked me if i felt better. i can honestly i don't feel relieved or hopeful. i am not anticipating any new-found wonderful relationship. we had lunch. i am not not talking to her any more. but, i also did not accept the family invitation to dinner on sunday. too much too soon. i still do not know what will happen, how this will impact holiday celebrations, etc.

we went to lunch. that's it.


cheatymoon said...

Proud of you for going to lunch. I think you are setting a good example for your kids. And I love that your husband is so in tune with all of this.

Years ago I could crank out newsletters in Quark Express and Pagemaker. I wonder if people even use that any more? Wish I could offer help, but I'd be hopeless (though maybe I could give you layout tips?)

Gal Friday said...

I thought the same thing as Erin did--wish I could help you somehow with the layout of the newsletter, but, I too, am clueless about that stuff. No local friends that know more about the graphic/computer designing part of putting together a newsletter?

I think you are doing the right thing as regards your family(parents)--draw boundries if you have to but keeping some contact while playing by "your" rules.
I was estranged from my father(self initiated for my own sanity) for years and it finally
*sort of* resolved itself, BUT my mother constantly wants to make the relationship more than it is and seems to be in denial that I had some huge issues with my father and pretends like everything is normal now/again because we have re=established contact. That driives me crazy! a way I think I can understand what you are going through.

Anonymous said...

I am glad that you are taking your time in deciding how to handle the situation with your parents. I'm also glad your Mom is reaching out, and that so far you're doing things on your terms. It sounds like this is healthy for you. I don't know that anything is going to make you feel better, aside from keeping some distance and avoiding drama. You've had your share, and you needed a break and you're liking it! In my opinion, not being in your situation, I would think any regrets you may have would be over what THEY did, not what YOU did or didn't do. And you can't change that. It doesn't sound like they are ever going to acknowledge anything they've done to hurt you. You can't blame yourself for that.

Proceed with caution!

Sweet T

The Mayor said...

You know I wish you well on finding peace with the boundaries that you feel are best for the emotional protection of family.

I learned the boundary lesson well with my husband's father and his controlling and contentious manner.

You must adhere to the boundaries you know in your heart are necessary.

My father in law died 6 years ago and the regret we feel is our kids have mostly negative memories of things that happened with him ("you lick that catsup off your plate, you shouldn't have taken more than you needed") sprinkled with a few good ones.

But the lack of an abundance of good memories is his fault, not ours.