Thursday, January 10, 2008

Here Comes Mom....

As the day is fast approaching --tomorrow! I am getting ready for Mom's eminent arrival. Its almost like Passover!

In the Passover preparation we must eliminate any bread, pasta, cookie, flour based food in the house. Basically, anything with yeast -the potential to rise- because we are symbolically removing our pride, arrogance, ego, etc from ourselves in preparation to celebrate the day Moses took the Hebrews out of Egypt. A very humbling experience indeed.

Its hard work, especially with little kids constantly leaving crumbs everywhere. Why I actually saw one of my little ones, last year, literally throw a piece of pasta behind the counter. (I made a mental note of this for clean up for this coming Passover).

Well, its the same with my mom. As I clean vigorously -or as vigorously as I can- I am also review things in my mind. Yes, my ego will be torn. To shreds. Somehow every Caribbean mother has a way of making the grown child feel small again.


So I prepare myself internally as well as externally. As I sweep every corner and mop the house (we have all tile floors here -no carpets) all the while I think she's going to find things wrong with me. Nothing will be right. I just have to accept it and continue to honor and respect her because she is my parent. Its like a mantra now, lol.

As I look up places to tour for her. I know I'll get criticized for whatever choice I make, but its okay. Its okay, its okay its okay. Honor thy Mother and thy Father is a tough commandment. But its important. Especially when I read the rest of it "....that your days may be lengthened..." I want to live long. lol.

As I choose which clothing to wear to meet her, I know she'll notice that I cut my hair -Oh boy. Everything but everything gets questioned: How I keep kosher now (Jewish orthodox way) as opposed to how I used to 'keep kosher' (the Caribbean way of salting, cleaning meat w/lemon & sometimes boiling water, etc). Actually, I do it both ways because I find it too hard to let go of my old way, but I have adapted my new ways. My head covering: It must be super gorgeous (sigh! what pressure). Even how I am with my husband.

Yep, just like Passover. I am also hoping for a miracle too! Just as the sea of Reeds split open for the people to pass, I am hoping my mom will have some kindness and go easy on me! Dear God, I thank you for allowing me to see my mom once again, even though we are so far. I thank you for the opportunity she had to enter the Holy Land and to come and pray at the Wailing Wall (Western Wall). God, isn't mercy one of your attributes? And isn't our relationship with our parents an interesting match to our eventual relationship with you? So, please let me see mercy from her eyes and heart! Bless us with a wonderful time that will only build both of our emuna (faith in action) for You. Thank You.


CW said...

"Somehow every Caribbean mother has a way of making the grown child feel small again."

OOOh I didn't know my mom was Caribbean too! LMAO...Seriously...Good Luck & Enjoy the visit! Let us know how it went...


Juggling Frogs said...

Hang in there, Miriam. Just keep a tambourine ready to celebrate (just like your namesake) when it's all over!

Have a great visit with your mom.

Randi523 said...

Thanks for explaining the significance of (unleavened?) bread in the Passover!
Good luck with your time with your mother!

Tania said...

I decided a couple of years to not let my haitian mother walk all over me and make me feel small ever again. I sat her down and had a woman to woman talk with her and things have gotten almost 100% better. I now call her out on the things that she says because I don't want my children thinking that this is normal. I didn't like having to do it but it was for my kids and my sanity.

You can still honor her, be respectful and still let her know that there a boundaries that shouldn't be crossed.

Good luck and have a great time!

Miriam said...

CW - lol or maybe its all mothers?!

JJ -Oh! How nice to see you. Thanks. I really think I'll go out and buy one for during the visit.

Randi- Thank you!

Tania - wow! That is amazing. but its true -this age (3) the children can pick up on so much.

I just have to first get the amazing squeak that enters my voice when she comes......

Liz said...

Hope you have a wonderful time with your mom. It's hard to feel so criticized, like you're never good enough. If I could give you some successful tips on dealing with it, I would, but the truth is, I haven't got any! I go through the same when I go visit my mom (she's never come visit me in LA even though I've been here almost 10 years.

Mes Deux Cents said...

Hi Miriam,

Please remember to care for yourself. When you feel stressed maybe you could excuse yourself and go for a short walk. Breathe deep and then go back.

Also we are only responsible for our own actions.

Ruth LaMorena said...


I hope you are holding up well during your mother's visit. I think it must be all mothers - my mother used to get on me so bad my left eye start to twitch. smh

Tania has a good idea. I didn't sit down and have a woman-to-woman talk with my mother. About 10 years ago, I just started leaving her presence whenever she would start in on me, even if I had just walked in the door - LOL. She still gets on me sometimes, but nowhere near as much as she used to. Hang in there - you can do it!

Grata said...


Good luck with Mumzee.

I can not relate to your situation. Its the opposite reaction with my mum and dad.

My dad will be mowing the lawn and all kind of things when he gets wind of a daughter of his coming to town. Strange but true. I did not know that carribean mums have a reputation. African parents(where I am from) are ultra strict when you are young then become the opposite when the child grows up. Very wierd role reversals there.

There is even a saying in my language that , "the aged rabbit breast feeds from its young".

They wait for you to get old, then its pay back, they then become the children.

KreativeMix said...

LOL!! good luck with your mom!!!

Attorneymom said...

I hope you are enjoying your mother's visit. Did she go easy on you??