Mom, I don’t know how to tell you this, but I got the hanging basket for my girlfriend.
My son’s words rang through my ears along with the thought, I just blogged about them! Mortification followed close behind with shame bringing up the rear.
Laughter erupted from one who jumped from the table and dashed to the computer furiously typing in the search engine bar.
Mom just blogged about those flowers!
No, Please! Don’t look it up. I just need to delete the post. I knew I shouldn’t have written about them! Don’t read what I wrote. Please. I’m serious. I am so embarrassed!!!!!! Don’t look it up!
Sometimes I can laugh at myself, but this wasn’t one of those times. I was in a panic. The nineteen-year-old inside of me felt exposed and out-of-control, two things not tolerated in her. I ran to the kitchen set and began to sob. That wasn’t the best place, so I regrouped and returned to the scene of the crime, the dining room. That wasn’t good, either. Tears erupted as I dashed to my bedroom and grabbed my journal and markers.
It all made perfect sense. A missing piece, hunch, whatever you want to call it clicked into place.
The playful color of the pot and flowers. I knew that orange was girlfriend’s favorite color. Of course they were for her! I am not the only one in this house. I had even wondered, What if this really isn’t for me? What if I am just assuming it is because it is on my step?
So that thought had entered my mind before I dismissed it and blogged about how much I loved the flowers, etc., etc. . . Because I really did.
The tears would not stop. Something had set them off, and it was not even about the flowers. That’s the thing. It was about the girl inside who looks like a 46 year old woman but still has insecure wounds that flare up at unexpected, inopportune times.
And now the internet witnessed one of them. At least all 14 people who read my post. I quickly switched it to private while processing my feelings. It was a huge step to not delete.
My son came to talk with me. I explained that it was not about the flowers and all about my 19 year old self processing a wounded place inside, exposed by the flowers and laughter. He listened and gave me a hug. I allowed more tears to fall.
Engaging the topic more, we came to a place of understanding, and I rested in a mystery solved.
I found the other family member to clarify that I was not upset with the laughter, and the tears were not about or because of them. It was me. Sometimes I can even laugh myself. I am moving closer to being able to laugh about this situation now that the intensity of feeling has waned, and I have had space to sort out what was happening inside. The person I freaked out at was kind and understanding.
I sat in a place of grief with myself for other times when similar flare-ups occurred when my adult offspring lived at home. I am sure there were many irrational mom freak out moments that caught them off guard and hijacked moments of laughter with buckets of sobs and tears, turning them into all about mom moments. I was not aware enough to recognize and name what was happening inside like I am getting better at doing now.
I still have a long way to go.
I am learning and growing and circling back to the nineteen-year-old inside. She is still there needing care and attention, and it is time to show up and tend to her.
And in the end, I reinstated my post as public, making only minor changes in wording. I am keeping the basket on the porch until the lovely girlfriend is able to pick it up and take it to her house where it will bring playful beauty and joy as intended.
I am grateful for the gift of its presence and story to help heal another space in my heart.