As we slowly make our way home, I can see the bottom half of my face in the side rearview mirror. All I can think is, “God, I look like my mother.” I told my husband this a couple of weeks ago. He told me I was crazy and I didn’t look like her. Either he was being a good husband or he is just as terrified as I am. Really, that isn’t fair. My mom doesn’t look bad for her age, when she is smiling. But she usually isn’t smiling. Her face is usually contorted with some sort of worry or signs of her defeat.
At my age, 34, she had had 5 children and two miscarriages. She was, from her perspective, in a loveless marriage that had started when she was just 18 and pregnant. She and my dad made it another 15+ years. All for the sake of the kids they said. But really when you fight all the time and sleep in separate bedrooms, no one is benefiting.
My mom and I started off similarly. I met a boy when I was 18 who would become my husband but that’s about it. No babies, no rush to get married.
My mom was very good at painting herself as some helpless victim who was suduced by an older man who was no good. It was a believable tale and my father’s aloofness only made it seem more true. Now as an adult I can see things more clearly and understand they were both to blame for making each other miserable.
My mother is still very good at playing the victim. It is a role she will always fill. Because she is my mom, I sometimes forget that I can’t call her up when I’m feeling anxious or need help because there is no room for that. I end up listening to her and problems that are of her own making. This happened right after we had decided to move forward and try for another baby.
I was stressed. I just wanted to talk to my mom and tell her how I was feeling. The conversations was about 45 minutes long. She started in immediately about how she hated her job and they hated her and how life was so unfair and none of it was her fault. Needless to say, she doesn’t know we are in a transfer cycle right now. I can’t tell her how the lupron is causing stomach upset and I’m not sleeping well. Or how I’m worried so the hormones are going to make me snap at my son. How I’m terrified this might work. How I’m terrified it won’t. She is coming for a visit in two weeks. She hasn’t been here since my son’s first birthday.
My transfer is the Monday after she leaves. With all these hormones pumping through my body, it is going to be a rough week.
As I look in the side review, I KNOW I look like my mother. I’ve just had a gentler life. But the features are there. The same lines that will become wrinkles, the same chin, cheeks. I can see it so clearly but I appreciate my husband’s white lie.