My Mom, My New "Friend"
Has anyone ever felt that moment when you realized that you and your mom are now “friends”?
I don’t mean “friends” in the sense where you can go to the club together. But, “friends” in the sense that I now can be my true self, and I don’t need to worry about what I say around you “friends”. I just realized that this moment has happened with my mom and I. But, the funny part about it is that I never thought we would be able to get here.
When I became my mom’s caregiver, our relationship really changed. Which is normal when you’re a caregiver. The child becomes the “parent”, and the parent becomes the “child”. No longer are our conversations filled with thoughts about whether I’m eating or taking care of myself. Now, the conversations revolve around making sure she’s eating, putting on clean clothes, and being careful as she walks up and down the stairs at the house.
We fix her lunch, and leave her watching television everyday before we head to work, and it’s like dropping off “my child” at daycare, as I make the promise to get home at a decent hour. But, in spite of our “daily routine” I realized that our “roles” in each other’s lives have changed again in the most unusual manner. I realized that were “friends” through our discussion of “Fifty Shades of Grey”.
My sister and I bought my mom the audiobook for Mother’s Day. My mom was looking to get some new books to keep her mind occupied. So, we thought “Fifty Shades of Grey” and “Eat Pray Love” are the perfect choices.
She’s really been enjoying them. Audiobooks are perfect gifts, especially for seniors with limited vision. It really allows them to think and use their imagination. Plus, nothing makes time fly faster that getting caught up in a great book. My parents were really heavy readers, and I know that my mom has really been missing enjoying books.
Now imagine what it’s like to have conversation with your mom about “Fifty Shades of Grey”. We’ve discussed everything from “Vanilla Sex” to “Spanking”. It’s been hilarious. My mom is very traditional, so these conversations were super informative and extremely funny.
It’s not easy trying to figure out your mom is a feminist, and would never allow a man to dominate her. Or to even have her “pepper “in details of her relationship with my Dad (scrub my brain ). But, in the end she doesn’t knock someone enjoying a healthy sex life.
My Mom can’t wait for me to get married, so I can enjoy a “healthy sex life” . Who knew through all of the tears and arguments that we have progressed to a level of respect; and that we are discussing “Fifty Shades of Grey” like best friends. Also, I’m not gagging at the thought of discussing my sex life with my mom (super weird).
Respect is one of the main things a caregiver wants. We want respect for the fact that we’re the people who are going through radical changes to ensure your needs are met. I swear I thought I heard angels singing when this moment hit me. It’s one of the best moments of my life.
So, don’t lose faith my fellow caregivers J. Friendship and respect can and will happen for you. I think it’s just a matter of tapping into something that changes the conversation from “care” to “life experiences”. Everyday can’t be about all of the sacrifices or challenges. Sit down and just talk. You never know what you may find out.
Until we met again!