Sunday, June 29, 2008

Birthday Recap

So, I'm 40. :) I can has another year? lol

My "big day" was Wednesday. I spent it nursing a migraine, changing multiple poopy diapers, and trying, in vain, to keep us all cool-ish when a massive thunderstorm knocked out the power for 9 hours. Fun times. The husband had to work, of course, so we splurged and had Chik-Fil-A for dinner. lol I did get to speak on the phone to all my living relatives, so that was nice. Otherwise, it was a low-key day. The best kind of all, in my book.

Saturday, we had my family party. It was held at my sister's house, which is lovely. My mom cooked a roast (with trimmings) and a homemade chocolate pie (my fave! yum!) and I received way too many gifts from my family. I can't pick a favorite, but some notable items were a pink and brown giraffe-patterned purse (way too cute), some milk glass geegaws for my vanity, a few cobalt blue glass items, a ruby necklace (gorgeous!) and an antique milk glass lamp for my sideboard. I did have a migraine and got absolutely NO sleep the night before, but it was fun. We got there about 1 PM and left around 8. We arrived home in another thunderstorm to ~ you guessed it! ~ no power. It was off this time until around 3:30 AM. I didn't care ~ I opened windows, lit candles so we could see to get around, and went to bed around midnight. Ghastly hot. Africa hot. When the power came back on, I woke up and put the candles out, changed Maddy, and went right back to bed, where I stayed until 11:30. :) Score! Sleep for me!

Maddy loves my sister, loves my dad, loves my brother-in-law, and loves my sister's cat. She does not like my mom. Never has. Of course, my mom doesn't particularly care for or understand Maddy, so the feeling is mutual. Sad, but true ~ several times over the years, my mom has made snide comments about Maddy and her disabilities, always right in front of Maddy, thinking that Maddy cannot possibly understand her. The first comment that I recall came when Maddy wasn't quite 6 weeks old and had just come home from the hospital on hospice care. We took her to my parents' house for a visit. I was complaining about how tired I was ~ Maddy couldn't lay flat to sleep, so I had to either hold her 24-7 (usually in a sling), or put her in her infant seat to use the bathroom. Typical new mom stuff, you know. Mom looked at me, looked at Maddy, and said, in her utterly tactless, mean-mom voice, "Just wait until you have a real baby ~ then you'll know about sleep-deprivation!" I just gaped at her. Hmph. Real baby. Hell, this one CAME OUT OF MY BODY! I think she's pretty REAL. ugh. Anyway, we left pretty much immediately, me holding T back from backhanding my mom. He was really angry at her. She's said equally thoughtless things many times over the years.

Anyway, Maddy was fine until my mom walked over to her and started baby-talking to her. Maddy loathes baby talk ~ she's 11 1/2 years old! She's a Big Girl. Just ask her ~ she'll tell you! lol She snorted at my mom, turned away from her, and when Nana persisted, she started to fuss. Mom turned away from her and said, "She just doesn't like me. That's okay, though, because I don't like her, either." Really mature, Mom. *snicker* I looked at her, though, and this time I actually said what I've wanted to say to her for years. "Yeah, Mom, she knows you don't like her, and that's why she responds accordingly to you." My mom drew herself up, threw me a look to kill, and said, "Well! I never!" and walked away. Score one for turning 40 ~ I guess I am finally growing a backbone when it comes to my mother and her relationship with her only grandchild.

Of course, as the day went on, Mom just glossed over it as if nothing had happened, even demanding a kiss goodbye from Maddy, who did not give her one. Like oil and water, those two. lol She did kiss Grandpa goodbye, though. *shrug* I don't think my mom will ever understand Maddy, and I know that as long as she won't even try, Maddy won't give her an inch. People always wonder why my parents don't watch their only grandchild, or even spend much time with us, even though we only live 18 miles away ~ there you go. Straight from the horse's mouth ~ my mom does not like my retarded child. Niiiiiice.

In the early years of Maddy's life, I really mourned for her loss of a nana. My own nana (my mom's mom) was very important in my life. She kept me, sometimes for weeks at a time, took me on vacations, loved me 100% unconditionally, and always told me how proud she was of me. That's what I wanted for my kid(s), and what T's mom provided. She absolutely adored Maddy, and spent more time with her on a yearly basis than my mom ever had ~ even though she lived almost 900 miles from us for most of Maddy's life. She spent between 2-4 weeks with us every year, and made no bones about the fact that she was here to see her granddaughter ~ we were just icing on the cake. lol She'd call on the phone every few days, always asking to talk to Maddy, who would just light up when she heard Granny's voice on the telephone. When Momma/Granny died, Maddy cried right along with us. She was very subdued at the funeral home and at the graveside services. She may be retarded, but she knows when people love her and she misses those people when they aren't around. She understood our grief, and while she may not understand the concept of death (I'm not sure about that, of course, since she can't talk to me in the conventional ways, but I don't think she really gets it.) she does understand missing her loved ones, and I know she misses Granny.

I'm very thankful that Maddy got 10+ years with Granny. I just wish my own mother could loosen up a little, and see the perfection that is my beautiful angel daughter. Maddy is such a little teacher ~ a soul full of life and light, joy and honesty, laughs and kisses.... My mom is really missing out by rejecting her.

Lucky me ~ I'm The Mommy of the world's most amazing child. I know it, and so do most of the people who open themselves to her.

I'm 40, and I am blessed. I also grew some pretty big ones this year! lol Good for me, and good for Maddy! :)


baldsue said...

Happy 40th!!!!

Touching post. Amazing what our own mothers won't accept, isn't it?

Enjoy another Maddy day.

Lisa said...

Here I am from FT... you wanted comments so here ya go!

I'm so sorry about how your mom treats Maddy. We have a similar situation with DH's mother... she does love DS and buys presents and pays attention but it's sort of, well, forced. I think she's still uncomfortable with the whole disability/didn't catch up in the timeframe he should have thing. On the flip side, my mother dotes on DS.

Maddy is a special angel and brings joy to so many. It's too bad your mom can't see that. (((hug)))

Hang in there!



Athena said...

I'm aghast at your mother. How horrible! Good for you for growing those big ones.

Anonymous said...

Happy Belated B-day Kim!

Maddy is such a special little's so obvious and I've never even met her (though I feel like I know her after reading about her for all these years).

I'm sorry that your mom hasn't realized how lucky she is to have Maddy as her grandchild.

Good for you for letting your mom have it!

Jen (Twinkle from FT)

Tina (ft) said...

I'm glad you told your Mother off! She's ridiculous and acting like a, well, I shouldn't type that word, but she is!

Happy late birthday and please give Ms. Maddy a hug for me. A super big hug coming for you!

Jenny, the Bloggess said...

Featured on Good Mom/Bad Mom on the Houston Chronicle:

Mrs. F said...

Your mother's ignorance saddens me. I think that it is hilarious that Maddy responds appropriately to her, and funnier that you finally told her off! Great birthday cojones!

Mrs. F said...

P.S. Found you through Good mom/ Bad Mom!

Kaza said...

Wow, wow, wow! I just came over from BS Sunday. Amazing post. And good for you! I turned 40 last year and I'm finding I'm growing some new ones myself! ;)

Natalie said...

wow! i can't believe some mothers. my parents and in-laws have all been great over the years, but even they've had their moments. i pray that maddy will have many people love her in her lifetime! and from what it sounds like she already does!

Ginny said...

Wow, I'm really surprised you even put up with it. I don't think I could. I'm glad your Maddy lets it be known that she doesn't like your mom. What a shame!

People always treated my brother bad as well, my mom said it started as a baby. For no reason either. Strange how people react to certain children/people.

Well happy birthday, good for you for finally taking a stand. They do say that Women learn so much & so much happier later in life. You start not being afraid of saying how you feel.