On Being a Mother and a Daughter

I believe that being a mother and a daughter is a great paradox. Especially when you don't have a good relationship with your mother. Because on the one hand you want to be gracious to your children, and to get grace from them; and on the other hand you are reluctant to give to your mother the very thing you need so badly to have from both her and your children, being tempted to rationalize or excuse your own behavior.

I'm wondering whether my mother felt this way when her mother was alive and needed care. My mother didn't have a great relationship with her mother, either. She full bore resented caring for my grandmother, and she made sure that we three girls knew it.

But I've been the same way. And I have to face the fact that I really don't know my mother's heart, just like she doesn't know mine. Assumptions and presumptions and offenses and reactions are the walls that keep us from knowing and understanding each other.

God is calling me to tear down the walls.

I know I have to answer that call, if I want to heal; if I want to break this generational tradition of hating on oneself and taking it out on one's children. I feel like a failure, even though my relationship with my children is a miracle compared to anything before me, and I know that to not do what God asks me to do will only have painful consequences further reaching than I can fathom.

This experience has become more about letting God heal the hidden hurting places in me, than about how my mother acts. It's about bending my will to His, instead of indulging mine.

Although God is with me, will never leave me or forsake me, and He equips me to do what He calls me to do, the choice is mine

And I am feeling raw right now.

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