Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Pushing buttons or pushing up daisies

Is there ever a time when someone pushes your buttons to the point that you're tempted to plan that person's murder? Morbid, I know. Psychotic, yes. Punishable by a prison sentence? Most definitely.

Yet that is what I was thinking as I hung up my archnemesis. Yes, Margaret. For those of you in the know, Margaret is Mommy Dearest. She'd been away on a cruise and foray to Florida over the last month so we've had fewer conversations than the every other day we usually end up talking - her choice, not mine. It's her choice because she calls me every other day to see what's new. That in itself is not a bad thing. What is a bad thing is the gentle jabs, the disguised barbs. This time was no different.

She doesn't know I've lost almost 15 lbs. and am well on my way to svelteness. So, when I divulged that I went out for sushi with my cousin and friend on Saturday and uttered the words "All You Can Eat" I should have expected the quick 1-2. Jab, cross and there it was: "Oh, so you pigged out then." Yes, Mother, it was all you can eat but I have restraint. Even I can't eat my weight in sashimi.

I should have expected it, prepared myself, and perhaps I should never say "All you can eat" in front of my mother. Lesson learned, Margaret. Lesson learned. And, I've learned so much from you, some good, some not.

That brings us up to the murder plan. I've discarded it. I actually folded the plan away minutes after I got off the phone - rather quickly, I might add. Thank Darwin that my cell was on its last bar of power and the tell-tale beep signified immediate disconnection. So, I disconnected, away from her, away from that negativity.

I've been doing it all my life and I guess I have to do it some more. While people do change, after almost 75 years of these comments, I don't think they are going to stop. I have taken the high road and even tried to sit her down and tell her how her comments make me feel, to no avail. Defensiveness (hers) popped in and squashed any headway for which I had hoped.

You can't teach an old dog, or in my case, mother, new tricks. I certainly can change the writing on the wall and the dynamics of our relationship. It's up to me to break the cycle.


  1. Families all get into these 'call and response' patterns. You've got it right that you have to be the one that changes - congrats on the sveltness

  2. It took me a LOT of years (and some therapy) to learn how to remove myself from those types of situations with my mother. I try to do that now, and most of the time, I succeed. But that doesn't mean it's not hard, or that it doesn't make me feel murderous. And it definitely doesn't change the fact that it is still hurtful.

    And yay for svelteness!

  3. ha ha murder plan. that's funny. somehow mothers always know exactly where to jab for it to hurt the most.

  4. Lulu, sometimes I just want to jab back.

    Gina, I can't keep moving and changing my phone number, so I'll have to look at other ways to deal.

    Paige, Yes, the knife was in my hand and I was all stabby.

  5. Of course you want to Jab back possum. But that will only hurt you because she won't show it - or she'll give you a guilt trip for it. You're right! You have to be the one to change it - 75 years is a long time to have an attitude. Keep strong.
    I've lost 6kg and I'm all in for bottomless sushi ;-) Go for it!

  6. Way to go Ange! Bottomless sushi is the very best. I think I may have to plan another visit in the near future.

    Don't worry, my boxing days are over. Besides letting it roll off my back, I really don't know how to handle it besides backing away. It's a sad situation.