Letters to my Mom {Day 9} Humble Pie

 Dear Mom,

Writing to you like this is really starting to mess with me, you’re on my mind all the time.  It’s like grief bootcamp, I know that the pain will lead to greater strength and freedom, but my heart is always on the watch for you, drawing parallels, replaying forgotten memories.

Today I found a new level of grace for you, and my soul uttered deep apologies, guttural, uncomfortable, awful and healing.

I lost my marbles this morning over, of all things, a travel mug.  Apparently coffee is intrinsically tied to my sanity.

My spirit was weary and I snapped.  I grabbed Noelle’s arm too hard when she peed in her car seat, I screamed and kicked the fridge, and then I crumpled on the floor.  A soggy mess of tears and apologies.

Kel saw my desperation and offered grace instead of judgement. He took the kids to run a few errands while I stayed at home seeking peace and sanity.

I remember moments when you lost it in the throes of intense mothering.  I held so many of these against you, used them to remind you that you were a failure in my eyes.  Now I blew it, we both blew it, I’m so sorry Mom.

I sobbed in our bed to Kel about how the kids would grow up hating me.  He reassured me that they’d love me always, then lifted each child into bed with me so that I could weep into their necks.  I sobbed rivers of apologies and a thousand “I love yous” into those baby soft faces.

You made mistakes as a mother and so do I.  Who am I to say where the line is between normal and excessive when it comes to motherhood meltdowns?

Did you cross it?  Did I?  Does it matter?

Would I be baking this humble pie and offering up all these apologies to you right now if you were still alive?

Would the fire of the early motherhood years have refined me and shown me how to offer grace if you were still on the other end of all those emails?

I hope so, I like to believe that with time the trials and triumphs of motherhood would have connected us.

And they do, and they are,

I love you, I miss you,


  • http://twitter.com/Vaderalman Mark Allman (@Vaderalman)

    Life does this to us all. Knocks us to our knees, beats the crap out of us, chews us up and spits us out. It is humbling to see our own weakness and short comings. It is also great that as we see them we can learn from them as well. This humbling can make us better; better sons and daughters, better moms and dads; better friends; better witnesses; and better at understanding the struggle that life puts us all through. It allows a compassion we would not otherwise have.

    • http://joycannis.wordpress.com Joy

      Darling, I have permanent goosebumps on my arms!
      I know this is a difficult thing you are doing and as someone on the outside looking in, I can also see how invaluable this will be in the way of healing.
      I feel your pain about snapping over something seemingly trivial, but you know what? Coffee IS directly linked to my sanity right now, and I’m okay with that :)
      This is such a brave thing you are doing to commit to 31 days of writing to your mom. I can say with great certainty that when looking back, they will be a treasure.

      • http://leannepenny.wordpress.com leannepenny

        Thanks Joy, thank you for encouraging and for understanding.

        And yes, Coffee is vital!!!

    • http://leannepenny.wordpress.com leannepenny

      You’re right Mark, this sort of humility grows so much compassion and grace. You’re a pretty wise man sir :)

  • http://twitter.com/MelissaBeaver Melissa (@MelissaBeaver)

    This resonates deep within my soul.