I’m always hesitant to say that because I don’t want to make my mom feel badly. She already feels guilty about me. She tells me all the time. When I was in high school, she felt guilty that Joey got all the attention.
I, meanwhile didn’t mind, or even notice all that much. I was too busy being a teenager.
However, there’s absolutely no reason for that guilt to still exist. I don’t like an ounce of worry or bad feeling to exist toward me because, frankly, her hands are already full. I’m fine. I can handle it. I’m not a teen anymore.
But, go figure, now, of all times, is when I care.
See, a teenage daughter needs a mother, and she was always a fantastic mother to me, even when I didn’t want it.
I can’t imagine a worse punishment for a person than having a teenage daughter. They’re spiteful, mean, bitchy and so, so cocky. And I was one of the good ones — no drugs or drinking or sex. I was always home before my curfew and didn’t even have a driver’s license, so it’s not like I could sneak out and get very far. Most Saturday nights, I babysat.
But, I still knew everything. I was Queen of the Eyeroll. I was still a little snot.
An adult daughter, meanwhile, doesn’t need a mother, per se. She needs the closest kind of friend a daughter can have.
Mom and I bond through shopping. We always have. Kohl’s and JC Penney have grown and cemented our relationship. And dammit, we don’t get to go shopping much anymore: Part of Joey’s new “phase” is getting pissy whenever Mom leaves. Or talks on the phone. Or isn’t bending to his puppet master ways. I don’t blame him; it’s not his fault. I’m not mad at him; he can’t help it. I don’t even resent him for it.
But … I miss my mom.
(This post was inspired by the post “The ‘other’ child” over at KoAutism, a single mom’s blog about her life with her autistic son … and her other child. You should seriously read it, if for no other reason to see the absolutely beautiful photo in the blog’s nameplate.)