Monday, September 7, 2009

the sea of stupid

(this is the Pacific ocean at Pataua North Beach, East coast New Zealand where i was yesterday - it is not the sea of stupid i am sure that would be much uglier than this!)

i have a mother who drives me mad

she has a daughter who drives her mad too...(and i am her only female offspring)

my best defense against the corrosion i feel around her is avoidance - and since i have moved back to my hometown from across the other side of the world i can't really avoid her....

so yesterday she came to my house - it was a big family gathering - about 15 people but still my nerves knew where she was every second....

the red alert button was flashing

and then i watched her do something that really annoyed me - i mean pissed me off and triggered me and made me feel small and blow up like an angerpuffer fish all at once...

and then i took a breath

and i saw her from a different perspective

i saw this woman on a sea of stupid

a sea of her own making... full of bitterness and envy and self pity and resentment

and i knew as sure as hell that i didn't want to swim there...

i didn't want to prove myself right, or correct her enough to go swim in that toxic sea

so i left her to swim by herself

i didn't even stick my toe in

- this is huge -

normally i would be like the big burly lifeguard - blowing my whistle and racing out with my silly hat and floatation device and making lots of splashing...

but i just turned and walked away -

if at 70 something she can't swim then i sure as hell can't teach her...

as i write this i feel slightly guilty about it but when i connect to the feeling of being so whole by not diving in i know i did the thing that is right for me...

and that is right

and when my 6 year old was crying last night about feeling as if she had been mean - i was able to use the swimming in the sea of their own stupid analogy and just let her be ok about sticking up for herself, about letting someone else try and put her down and just leaving them to it because they would look stupid not her... and it helped...

so long sea of stupid -

i think people only drown there if they stay so long, trying to prove how bad it is there all they need to do to survive is start swimming to the shore....


  1. faerian, i am completely in love with how you say things.
    thank you for this.

  2. thankyou Andrea, that means alot to me!

  3. I'm walking away from the beach, but the blasted "mom" sand dunes have a way of shifting when you least expect it!
    Your analogy is so perfect!!
    (still holding on)

  4. Because of your pain and the wisdom you have gleaned from it, you are able to empower your daughter to thrive. That is wonderful!

  5. thankyou "me" ... shifting sands are such a desert metaphor - the namibia of mothers - dry and barren and drowing in the sea....

    keep holding on sweet thing

  6. Thanks for your comment Cathy Elaine....i just hope it doesn't take my daughter as long to embed the lessons in her life!!!

  7. I hear you, my Fabulous faerian friend :) :)
    And I celebrate you and your wonderful achievement.
    Thank you for being you.

  8. oh lovely mollie thankyou for celebrating with me - i feel honoured - you are a gift!

  9. This is very profound, my dear friend. We have unfortunately been in this sea far too often to try to help someone. We sent out all the help we could, but she refused to see it. You're right...the only way out is for them to swim out. As it was, we swam to shore and watched as her little boat bobbed out of sight. We no longer go to that beach.

    People's life choices set them adrift. They are the ones who have to see the shore...but so few do. Most just keep drifting on this endless sea.

    Thank you so much for writing this. Even after the year it has been since we watched the boat disappear, I still feel guilty. Thank you for letting me know I'm not alone and there really wasn't anything else we could do.

    I will have to visit your thinking place more often. It's wonderful here.

  10. Gooseberry....just wow

    my lovely faerian, I think you and I need a beach day ;)