Taboo Tuesdays: There Are NO Perfect Parents

Photo taken by:  A. Harrison
Photo taken by: A. Harrison

For the past couple of months I have corresponded with a female family member.  She lives with a man, age 28, that has custodial issues with his child’s mother.

It seems he has problems keeping a job and a roof over his head.  And now that she lives with him, it seems he struggles with keeping a roof over her head.  Should he gain custody of his child, the hand-writing on the wall clearly shows he won’t be able to keep a roof over his child’s head either.  Yet, my young impetuous family member feels she and this guy are more suitable to raise the child than its mother!

Ooh!  I forgot to add, my young and gullible family member is only twenty-one years old.  She seems to believe living life as an adult is stupid.  Well at any rate with her childlike behavior she has been told by whoever, whomever, she is more suited to raise another woman’s child.  And with that noted I want to say the following:

It pisses me off to the highest of pisstivity when parents move on and find foolish people who believe they would make a better parent to children than the custodial or non-custodial parent.  And, trust me when I write, it really does rip my seat of toleration when these foolish people truly believe they are better than the parent in question.

Children don’t come with manuals.  And every parent (male or female) will make mistakes in parenting.  And I don’t give a hoot who spouts they are the better parent!  There are no perfect parents!  There are parents that do the best they can with what they have.  There are parents that are good parents because they do exceptional jobs at parenting!  But there are no perfect parents!  Like there are no perfect children.

 

Don’t Judge My Mom

When I was a child, I spoke and thought and reasoned as a child. But when I grew up, I put away childish things. — Paul The Apostle


 

My mom Gloria Mae - Photographer:  Unknown
My mom Gloria Mae – Photographer: Unknown

When I was a child between the ages of four and eleven I was very envious of my cousins.  To me they had the cookie cutter mom and the all American home life.

Their mom stayed home.  And since my aunt didn’t work she was able to shower her children with love and guidance.  On the other hand, my mom, her sister, was a working woman.  My mom worked two jobs and she had little to no time for her children.  Therefore, me and my siblings were forsaken the love, understanding, and guidance that came from healthy parenting.

My aunt was a woman that took her role as a mom seriously.  Each of her children had swimming lessons one day and was taken to the library the next day.  She was a mom that made sure dinner was cooked everyday.  She was a mom that afforded her children the luxury to explore the heights of their imaginations.  She was the kind of mom that all children wish they had but seldom got or get.  And even though she was my aunt and a supermom I being her niece was living in parental poverty.

Parental poverty is a doorway that starves the mind from reaching its full life’s potential.  Most times parental poverty emotionally starves children of healthy emotions, as it slowly sends the souls of children into hardship.   It cripples children from learning and hampers childhood dreams.  It cast shadows over the lives of children and makes them question their existence.

And, sadly, my poor mom never realized the full meaning of being a parent.  She never really understood her role as a mom or a single mother.  Therefore, she never figured out she was for a temporary moment the captain of her children’s lives.  In her efforts to provide for her young she failed to see her children were starving for character building nourishment only a parent could give.  And as I grew so did my expectations concerning how my mom should parent me.

I hated my mom for not parenting like her sister.  I so desperately wanted to learn how to swim.  But my mom’s obligation to keep a roof over our heads and food on the table kept her from fulfilling my wishes.  And each time one of my child desires went unmet I began to nurture the love hate emotions I cultivated towards my mom.

I was never easy to get along with.  I hated my parents and with the exception of my aunt Pearl and her children I hated the rest of my mom’s family.   And most of all I hated being black, therefore, I hated my life.  And because my mom lacked experience as a nurturer the demands to shelter and feed became a lethal combination.

My mom had no idea she was killing my spirit when she told others I was retarded.  And hearing her unkind words cut deeply.  But my will to survive was stronger than the words she expressed to others.  My will to succeed was predestined and I knew that!

So when I was a child I made clear to self I was going to be someone special.  I was going to give to myself what my mom never gave to me, and rebuild what her mean-spirited words had torn down.  I was going to show my mom who was retarded!

My mom and me
My mom and me

My long awaited day of exoneration never came the way I thought.  My mom has grown old and is now sickly.  I became a parent that also made mistakes.  And as my mom’s health continues to decline the thoughts of revenge are replaced with compassion.  I no longer seek vindication nor does the thought of it appease my wounded soul.  By realizing my mom did the best she could with the understanding she had my broken heart was healed.  And in acknowledging her deficiency as my mom her overdrawn parental account is paid in full.

 

Taboo Tuesdays: Learning to be Happy in Your Skin – Part II

Last week I shared the following story:

MA Concerned Mom asked:

I have asked my friends and family a million times but nothing works maybe someone can give me something else to try? I have a daughter who is 5 she is half african american half white. She is a beautiful girl but she HATES her color (carmel). Ive tried explaining to her that she is beautiful and no matter what color she is she is beautiful. Ive tried explaining everything to her it dont work! My son is very pale color and she seems to be so jealous of him I even have a hard time getting her to go to her.dads house or family’s cause she dont want to be around “colored” people. Its like she resents them for her color! She often ask who God punished her and made her brown or if she can paint herself white. Please someone have tips? Im out of ideads..

Taboo Tues Blog PhotoWhen I read the story something about the content tapped into my hidden issues of self-hatred.  I immediately recognized the unhealthy emotions as painful childhood memories.  Honestly, I wanted them to remain buried.  Mainly because they are suppressed memories from my childhood.   I didn’t know how to deal with them.  Yet something bigger, something greater, did not want my feelings of hopelessness to stay buried.  Apparently it is time I visited the giants that seemed so much bigger to the little girl in the photo.

Coming across the plea from a hopeless mother has changed my life.  The story casts light on my life learned lessons about self-hatred.

Now that I am an adult I am wiser than the little girl within that continues to feel helpless, unloved, and ugly.  Unknown to her I can go to the giants of rejection, abuse, and self mutilation.   I can knock on their door without fear.  I can barge my way into restraint places as a protector of hers and my mental well being.  And most of all I give my spirit the authority to emotionally rescue the little girl in the photo and join her with the woman I have become.

Love yourself, for if you don’t how can you expect anybody else to love you? ~Author Unknown