A New Day
I wrote a blog a few weeks back about a twenty dollar bill I received in the mail. This came from my birth mother, Margie Ketterman of Michigan this year as a belated birthday gift. The story has touched the heart strings of many as it seemed to touch a chord in those that read it of relationships that, perhaps, needed mending. Or perhaps validation? Or maybe just another simple sign of I love you.
My brother’s favorite saying for years was “Life is about choices we make, we must accept responsibility for those choices.” My mother made a choice to not be involved in my life the day she left my father. She did attempt to stay in contact but it was sporadic for years. At times, non existent. She had her own issues to deal with and somehow I got left standing out in the cold with the feeling that my birth mother did not care about me. I have felt for years she did not deserve to have a relationship with me either. She made a choice to step out and leave me and not support me in any fashion. Therefore, why should I put any energy into a relationship with her? She is not what most would consider ‘mother material.”
As I have aged and endured the long treatment of cancer, my attitude has changed. It is important to dissect our past and learn from it. It is still vital we accept responsibility for the decisions we make with our life but there is also a time to let go of our past and live for today. My decision to send the twenty dollar bill blog to my mother was to say “I have forgiven you and still embrace you in my heart in love. I recognize you love me as much as you can and I do not fault you for not being the mother I wanted.” This was healing to us both.
This Christmas morning, we spoke for the first time in literally years on the phone. The dialogue began like two strangers and quickly, the time and the distance evaporated. We became who we are, mother and daughter, full of wonder about the other, full of sadness for what we missed out on and grateful for the moment. Isn’t that was Christmas is really about, the moment. The moment Jesus was born, our world changed forever. The “I love you and always have” my mother and I shared this Christmas will forever change us both.
May you create many moments like this in your life in 2009!