10 June, 2012

Save the Drama for Your Mama

Or in my case, Leave the Drama to Your Mama.

It's been a while since I mentioned my mom coming to visit. She was here for 4 days last week. Yup, 4. And somehow during that short time, she managed to push all my buttons and things in our already-tense relationship just exploded.

For a few weeks before she flew out here, she told me of some things she wanted to do while she was visiting. Things like going to the beach, Pearl Harbor and a couple other touristy things. These things are not bad, but in fact expected when anyone comes to Hawaii. However, she was not just coming to Hawaii. She was {supposedly} coming to see Charlotte and I and spend time with us. About a week ago, she informed me that she wasn't going to be able to rent a car when she was visiting because she didn't have the money - even though my dad just bought her a brand spankin' new car and a Vegas trip after she left Hawaii. She asked if we would have the money to rent a car and I flat-out told her no. So the result was that we'd have to do things while Joe was home in the mornings {remember the silly swing shift he's on? PT at 1430, work from 1730-0130}.

I had hoped that once she got here, she'd realize that getting Charlotte out and about was/is difficult and she'd want to just hang out at home with us. Well, I really shouldn't have gotten my hopes up. It turns out, she came to see Hawaii and then she wanted to spend time with us. Every day she was here it was, "I want to do x, y, and z. Do you think we'll be able to go see 'y' today? I really want to see 'y'. Can we do 'z' too? You only get to see Hawaii once!"

By Tuesday night (she arrived on Sunday), I about had all I could take. Joe lovingly stepped in for me during one of her "Can we see 'x' tomorrow?" rants and told her we could if it fit into our schedule. He had to go back in for a PT test the next morning, and the day before there was some sort of change of command ceremony we didn't hear about until the night before. You know how it is with the military, things change daily and sometimes hourly. Anyway. Apparently, this upset her because when I came back in the living room after getting Charlotte, Mom was outside all upset.

She came back in after about 10 minutes or so and started in on how she just wanted to see Hawaii. I told her - in a very nice, calm manner - that I would really just rather she want to stay home and hang out with us. {Because, really, that's when Charlotte is the happiest.} I told her I understood her want/need to see the island, but it's just hard for me because all I do is worry about Charlotte when we're out - is she hungry/sleepy/wet/dirty/why won't she eat?! After several minutes of us going back and forth - and her expressing concerns about Joe's feelings toward her - she went back outside. I asked Joe to go out and talk to her {he'd been in our room, trying to sleep} because I was in the middle of feeding Charlotte.

I don't know what was said out there, but Mom came back inside all fired up. It was unbelievably awful. If you follow me on Twitter, you might have caught a couple of my tweets from that night. We argued about everything from why she came to visit {and why my dad didn't} to things that happened before Joe and I were even married. I was accused of not loving my family, abandoning them when I got married, and basically being a bad daughter. Oh, and I'm pretty sure she resents the fact that I'm so close to my in-laws. I'm guessing she wanted me to not like them so much? I don't know. Nothing was really resolved that night... I gave up trying to talk to her around midnight. I was exhausted mentally and physically and I knew that Charlotte would be up in 5 or 6 hours.

When Charlotte woke up around 6:00, Mom was sort of up but didn't really say much to me. I went back to bed right after I fed her because I was so tired. Joe had gotten up at 5:00 for his PT test, so he was long gone. And when I got up for the day around 8:00, Mom had left a note saying she went for a walk. She came back a few minutes into Charlotte's feeding and I was honestly expecting some sort of talk about the previous night. Instead, I got the exact opposite. She acted like nothing had happened. She was overly chipper and talked about how great her walk was... It was bizarre. And not a word was mentioned about it for the rest of her stay. None. What. So. Ever.

I feel so confused and a tad bit guilty for everything blowing up while she was here. And also that we weren't able to do much in the way of tourism. But then I realize that she had 2 years to come here and play the tourist. When Joe was deployed, my parents took a trip to Vegas. I mentioned a few times that it wouldn't be that much more costly for them to come visit me. Hawaii is only a 6 hour plane ride from Vegas. I know, I've done it. I would've loved for them to be here while I was going through deployment. It would've been nice to have company. But, no, they didn't come. And I also realize that most family members would have 1) stayed for more than 4 days and 2) realized that we just can't pick up everything at the drop of a hat and do everything we/they want to do.

So now I just don't know what to do. Do I push the issue and try to solve things? Do I do as my parents are clearly doing and ignore it? I love my family, but sometimes I honestly wonder if I should even bother. I feel drained emotionally and spiritually. I'm searching for the answers only God can give, but I haven't found any yet. So if you've made it this far please say some many prayers for Joe and I. We so need it. The only way I'm getting through this is prayer, talking to my sweet hubby and watching my sweet little girl laugh and smile.

I love Instagram. =)


Jen said...

I know exactly what you are going through. I have been dealing with this with my family for the past 4 years. I hate coming home to Vegas because both our families are here and it's always a fight. I pray for comfort for both you and Joe with this situation. I hope that you get the answers that you are searching for.

Marinewife1111 {Marcella} said...

It's kind of odd for me to read this ONLY because I read so many blogs or know so many people who are SO close to their moms, that they can't understand this kind of relationship.
(((hugs to you)))
I have a much better relationship with my parents when it's from afar and we don't talk that much even though that's kind of sad to say.

I will be thinking of you and I hope your situation can get better for Charlotte's sake!!

Rebekah said...

I really don't have any advice for you, but I know that it's hard to not be super close to your parents. My relationship with my parents is getting better but I think I'll always have to work on it especially living so far away. Praying for you!

Anna said...

Girl, hang in there! You do NOT need the stress of this. I know things with family can be more stressful than anything else. Your family (you, Joe, and Charlotte) is the most important thing - at the sake of all else put that first (after God, of course). I know you want your relationship with your mom to be mended, and hopefully one day it will be. All you can do is take action based on how God is leading you and leave the rest. Don't stress about it, think about it, or worry about it. I know it is hard to do, but just let it roll off. God is in control and if you are acting according to His word than you have nothing to worry about. Realize that you can only do your part, not your mom's too. I'm so sorry her visit was difficult and not helpful. I am grateful you have Joe though, and that sweet little bundle to give you joy! I will be praying for you guys. Love you!

hmb said...

I can't believe she asked you to rent her a car! Like you don't have anything else to pay for with a brand new baby!

I have the same issues with my family. I attempt to focus on the positive in my dad, but he makes it SO difficult! Know how ya feel! Hope things with your mom get better over time :)

Erin said...

She sounds almost exactly like my in laws! They came out here for 48 hours, on their way to a week long vacation elsewhere. And they want to do touristy things and hiking. It was the first/only time they had met A (she was 6 months old). If it were me, I would have put the priority on spending time with my granddaughter.

Chantal said...

That's just frustrating. First of all, 4 days? Really? Second, it's nearly impossible to do all that stuff with a baby! That's disappointing. I'm sorry :(

Brianna Renee said...

I don't have anything wise to tell you about what you can do to make things better with your parents because, to me, it seems like all the issues are theirs. She should've remembered what it was like to be a new parent and how difficult it is to get out and about (that does get easier btw) and the fact that she asked you to rent a car?! Seriously. Wow. I'm sorry. Thank God you have such a good relationship with your in-laws because you clearly don't have your family the way you want/need.

JG said...

Oh my goodness. I'm so sorry. I was really hoping this would be a good time of bonding for you guys, with Charlotte to consider, but honestly, there's only so much you can do when the other person isn't willing. I'm sorry. I'm so glad you've got Joe to have your back.

heather said...

aww im so sorry. my mom also does this with me a lot. when i first got married i lived 2 sec down the road from my in laws and heck i had never lived outside my families home so of course i wanted my own independence and that made my mom mad i was close to my MIL until i had my first kid. she pulled the whole i raised four kids and my way is best and that didn't fly well with me. fast forward to now, a 4 yr old and a baby due in 2 months and my mom gets all bent out of shape about everything. i have a friend that lives by my in laws that does free ultrasounds for me all the time. and she was so nice one day to bring the machine over to my in-laws since she was on that side of town. my mom got mad that my MIL saw the baby and she hasn't on a ultrasound. really!!!! she brings it up non stop and it drives me crazy. then when we named our little girl she actually told me how much she hated the name, how un cute it is and how she should name my kids since i cant pick a pretty name. i mean wow, thanks mom. after i pretty much said thats her name get over it, she still told me names she heard of that were pretty.

im chalking this all up to her age(late 40s) and she is def losing that filter she used to have. it doesn't help that we are always together. since my hubby deploys in a few days we live with them in a downstairs apartment thing to save some money and in case i need help with 2 kids while he is gone. but she just tries to run my life and everything in it. so dont worry your def not the only one. and i just ignore it all, or i try to without snapping back and being totally mean. im sorry your going through all this too. it make it so hard.. ill be praying for you and if you find any good tips with dealing with it please share them, i know i could use them

Amanda said...

I experienced almost the same thing when we lived in Maryland. Granted we didn't have a child. But my family came and visited for like 4 or 5 days and wanted to do something EVERY single day.. the whole day. There was no down time, relaxing or not running. I asked them if they came to visit me or the DC area? This of course caused a blowout argument between my Dad and I.. where I essentially told them they shouldn't have come at all. The next morning things were back to normal. For me, it is better to do that. I don't like confronting family issues head on. I know they love me, and I will always love them. So we have the arguments, we reflect on what was said and then we move forward. We don't discuss it as it just drags things out. I don't know how your family system works.. but for me that was the best option. I'll be thinking about you girl.

Crazy Shenanigans-JMO said...

Oh that sounds like a really tough spot. I'm sorry that the visit didn't go as you'd hoped. I think you are right though. It sounds like she came there more to be a tourist than anything else.

Jenna said...

I am in a similar situation with my mother as well. I have chosen to step back and try not to let it get to me. I let her have the relationship she wants with me. Meaning if she doesn't want to make the effort to see me then that's her choice. I deal with what I can and hang up the phone when it gets too much. I don't like the situation but I can't change much. If you ever wanna chat or talk about it let me know.