Here is a sobering question from one of my readers.
My mother is very ill. In my opinion, she's been a bad mother, always depressed, angry, reactive, self-centered, critical of her kids. My siblings and I have all had issues and have needed therapy because of her. But to her defense, she raised the four of us alone and on her own. I'm the oldest, and our father abandoned ship when I was a baby. I used to watch my mother when I was younger and remind myself to NOT be like her. Instead to see the glass half-full, to be even-tempered, generous, kind, supportive, and grateful for life. I have turned out well. But now I'm torn. She's reaching out to me and my siblings now that she knows she is dying and her time is limited, and I just don't know what to do. Does she deserve our support and kindness after what she's done? Thanks, KM
Thank you for sharing so honestly about something as deeply personal and private as this. And for asking the difficult question.
I relate to your story with your mother, although my challenging journey has been with my father, not my mother. In fact, I've written about my journey with my parents as they become elders needing support, in a previous blog: "Becoming Our Parent's Parents."
When I was a young teen, I would watch my father, especially during his reactive and unhappy times, and tell myself that I would NOT turn out like that, but that instead I would seek positive lessons from life's experiences -- the good and the bad ones -- and be an even-tempered, loving, supportive, optimistic role model in the world.
In fact, I think I became a "conscious life coach" and counselor BECAUSE of my father and his negative role modeling. This is at the core of the Abraham-Hicks material -- that our "contrasting" or negative experiences are what directly turn us toward our positive, desired experiences. When I consistently compare this philosophy to my own life, I see its truth. KM, can you see how your mother's negative ways propelled you into your positive ways?
This also takes us out of feeling like a "victim" of our lives and gives us back our power and trust in the experiences we have. This is because we stop talking about what "life does to hurt us" and start seeing what "life does to help us" lean into the light of our growth and fulfillment. Remember, much of the grandeur and beauty of the natural land we live on is formed through adverse conditions. Humans are part of this natural system, not separate, so our methods of growth may also include adversity or "contrasting" experiences.
This is why I refer to my dad as an "unconscious life coach," because he unconsciously helped me to become the fulfilled, whole and healthy, and self-realized person I am, and continue to become.
And perhaps KM, your mother is your unconscious life coach. Do you think? If so, how can you use her unconscious life coaching to turn toward your positive, desired experiences? Sounds like you've already been doing that!
Does your mother deserve your support and kindness? Ultimately, only you can decide the answer to this. However, my answer is "yes" your mother deserves your support and kindness. The catch -- you can't expect anything in return.
As I wrote in my blog, I instinctively know that supporting and loving my dad as he prepares for his transition back to the non-physical realm is the right thing to do. That I myself practice unconditional love is what matters to me most. When we love unconditionally, we do it without expecting or needing anything in return. And this feels deeply gratifying. This may be because at our core, we all come from the same Source energy of love.
I also have a strong sense that our unconditional love travels with those who pass on; that it's like paying it forward to future (and past) generations! And I also believe that love and forgiveness release karma.
And so, dear KM, I hope these insights are helpful and useful for you. And that you can see the possibility that your mother has been one of your primary and most powerful life coaches, albeit an "unconscious" one! Be kind, caring, patient, and loving with yourself as you navigate through this potent and tender time of helping your mother leave this world held in the loving energy from whence she came.
Ashes to ashes, dust to dust, love to love.
Your Conscious Life Coach,
The Paradoxical Commandments. by Dr. Kent M. Keith
People are illogical, unreasonable, and self-centered. Love them anyway.
If you do good, people will accuse you of selfish ulterior motives. Do good anyway.
If you are successful, you will win false friends and true enemies. Succeed anyway.
The good you do today will be forgotten tomorrow. Do good anyway.
Honesty and frankness make you vulnerable. Be honest and frank anyway.
The biggest men and women with the biggest ideas can be shot down by the smallest men and women with the smallest minds. Think big anyway.
People favor underdogs but follow only top dogs. Fight for a few underdogs anyway.
What you spend years building may be destroyed overnight. Build anyway.
People really need help but may attack you if you do help them. Help people anyway.
Give the world the best you have and you'll get kicked in the teeth. Give the world the best you have anyway.
Copyright 2014 Maddisen K. Krown M.A.