Depression Marathon Blog

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Diagnosed with depression 16 years ago, I lost the life I once knew, but in the process re-created a better me. I am alive and functional today because of my dog, my treatment team, my sobriety, and my willingness to re-create myself within the confines of this illness. I hate the illness, but I'm grateful for the person I've become and the opportunities I've seized because of it. I hope writing a depression blog will reduce stigma and improve the understanding and treatment of people with mental illness. All original content copyright to me: etta. Enjoy your visit!

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Saying I love you.

Between running speedy workouts and painting for hours on end, I am sore. My legs hurt from my speed workout. I'm not used to running that fast anymore, but that's what my training plan called for, so I did it. Of course standing and painting my basement for hours probably contributed to the sore legs, and I know it's the reason for my aching shoulders! I need an ice pack!

I needed some sustenance after my long day of painting and running, so I went out to eat with my mom and step-dad. They are full-time RV'ers, and they will only be in town another two weeks. I'm bummed about that. They were supposed to stay until the end of October, but their plans changed. They're leaving at the end of September instead. Worse yet, they won't be coming back next summer. They've been here three summers in a row, and it's been really nice having my mom around. She left when I was twelve, and I had spent very little time with her until they began coming here for the summers 3 years ago. I've enjoyed spending time with her. Of course, the fact that she cooks for me is nice, too. I'll miss that. I'll miss them.

I'm sure my mom would be surprised to read that last sentence. We don't exactly have a touchy-feely relationship. I'm still fairly guarded around her. I don't know why. It's just the way it is. I've gotten a lot better over the past several years. I think just being around her more has helped. It also helps that I've learned to live life through the AA program. I've learned to be more honest, grateful, and real. And that has helped me be a little more open with my mom. I still don't know if I'll be able to tell her I'll miss her though. Isn't that dumb?

I envy people who have easy relationships with their parents. I envy families that express their feelings for each other. There's a lot of trash in our past in my family. We also weren't raised to say things like, "I love you." Strange? I don't know. That's just how it was/is. But like I said, I've gotten better with my mom, and I'm a work in progress, so I'll keep working on it.

I'd love to hear how things were in your families. Is my situation weird, or is it more normal than I think? Do you tell your parents you love them? Do you have kids who say that without a thought? Or is it rare to hear those words in your family, as it is in mine? Just curious...

And on that note, I'm off to rest my weary bones in bed. Good night.

7 comments:

NOS said...

I think my family is very similar to yours. I would NEVER tell my parents or sisters that I love them (well, I actually don't think I love my parents but I definitely love at least one of my sisters). And they don't tell me that they love me. So I can relate.

Get some rest!

Wishing you well,
NOS

-Chris said...

You have really opened a question that I feel passionately about. I may be in the minority, but I hope not. I have been very blessed to have parents that freely communicated their love for their children. I know many people have not been as fortunate as I, but here is how I try to make sure I pass along a love, freely given and conveyed, to those that matter most...

I do not let the sun set on a day in which I don't tell my three boys and my wife how much I much I truly love and care about them. It is like a cocoon that insulates them from some of the daily problems and stresses that can water down their own self understanding of how precious they are in God's eyes, and in mine. As a dad and a husband, it is my responsibility to protect them and provide for them. I can't think of any single thing more important that I can impart to them daily than the knowledge that no matter what, I love you. Period.

Mohican said...

Same with me. I said it once or twice, and my mother's face lit up. But now I use hugs. There's a line between saying it rarely but making it special, and saying it all the time and having it become less meaningful, more like phatic communication.
This is a frequent topic in modern situation comedies - not without reason. I think it is very common. There are few families like the ones that were portrayed in the 50's. But of course, drawing insights from watching television is chancy!

Anonymous said...

We are sickingly I-Love-You-ites. We say it all the time, even when we hate each other. I certainly don't think a person loves someone more or has a better relationship with their family member just because they say they love each other.

~Leslie

Maggie Beth said...

I wrote about this very topic on my blog about two weeks ago --- Say what you need to say...


http://decade-do-over.blogspot.com/2010/08/say-what-you-need-to-say.html

No family is perfect. No parent or child is perfect. But some do try harder than others. And then there are "those".......

I have enjoyed being an adult far more than I enjoyed being a child. As a child I would spend hours LONGING to grow up (and out). As an adult I was able to go back and 'rescue' that little girl- and help her become the amazing woman I am very damn proud of!

As as did we say, "I love you"? I had BOTH -- from the SAME mother - throughout the years it has been, "I wish I had aborted you" and "You were the best gift I ever got." Bit of a tilt-a-whirl! The irony is that there are people who would literally have given all they had to have had a kid as good as I was. (Check out my Walking in Daddy's Shoes blog and you'll see my family).

Say what you need to say Etta.....

Divas said...

I have a very tumultuous rela. w my mom b/c I'm far too independent where she wants me to be dependent on her. My dad and I get along the best as he doesn't react to me emotionally when I'm emotional like my mom does. However, the storms always pass no matter what and we do say I love you even if it's not all the time. I'm truly thankful for my parents and I think as I get older, our relationship gets better.

I hope you enjoy what time you do have with yours.

Katie said...

I am blessed to be able to say I love you to my mom whenever I can, as she lives with me. I grew up in a very abusive household at the hands of my father. And before you ask yourself did my mother know,she did not and was horrified and devistated when she found out. That is a whole nother story,the sort of things I write about in my own blog,katie-ayotte.blogspot.com
I on the other hand have a very hard time even saying that I like my father and I do this more for me so that I don't carry useless anger and pain. My sister and I over the last couple of years have been able to say I love you and mean it, I felt abandonded by both my older siblings because they found away out and left me there with no escape at the age of 10. I say I love you to my brother now more than ever as his health is very bad and if we have another 2yrs with him we are lucky, so we have said our peice and make the best we can of our time. I do love both my siblings very much. I'm just sad that it took so long. My daugther is my heart and soul and I can never tell her often enough how much I love her, it has been her love for me that has gotten me through when I did not think I wanted to live. Love in my world as you see, is complicated but, I am thankful that it is present.



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