Friday, May 8, 2009

Mother's Day Regrets?

I have a wierd confession. I am old. Wanna know how I know I am officially old? I am a talk radio junkie. Well, not really. I just would rather listen to that then the current and even not so current music alternatives. So if you are to get into my truck at almost any time, you will most likely find it on 92.3 (KTAR, talk radio in AZ.)
Last night, I was driving back from Tempe, and they were talking about Bristol Palin being a spokesperson for abstinance. The commentator was very distainful of this decision. Not because he didn't disagree with abstinance as a preventative measure to combat teen pregnancy, but because she had stated at an earlier time that abstinance was not really a practical solution. I was ready to call in. See, I understand exactly how it is possible to have these thoughts come from the same individual, relatively close together in time.
I understand how hard it is to say, "No I dont regret having my son, I love him dearly. I wouldn't trade him for the world." Even when all the world knows what choices led up to you having him. But I also know what its like to say, "I wish I would have had my son under different circumstances. I know now why a family should have a mother and a father. I now understand why kids should be born to parents committed to each other through marriage vows. Cause I know just how hard it is to do it alone. And while I would never, ever trade my son for anything in the world, I can and do regret the events that led up to his arrival.
When interviewed, it seems the media wanted Bristol to admit that her son, Tripp, was a mistake. She never did. But she expressed many of the same feelings I have felt. I can say "No, my son was not a mistake, but the choices that led up to me having were." There is a big difference. I think instead of the media condeming her and saying she is a hypocrite, I think they should realize that she is using her "name" to be able to say to kids, "Don't make the same mistakes I did." I applaud her for being able to admit her choices were not wise and be willing to use her experience to help other girls make better decisions. As for her original statement that abstinance was an ideal but unreasonable expectation for teens, I see it this way: in this day and age, it certainly is difficult, but I think it mirrors Tripp's father's thinking more than her own and it also works as a baseline to show us just how much she has learned in her short time as a mother. See NO ONE, NO ONE, can begin to explain how life altering a baby is. Especially, if you are a single parent. It is only through actually experiencing it that you realize how much it changes who you are and what you believe, what you can and can't do, and just about every facet of your life.
Because of the circumstances of Reed's conception, my first mother's day was very hard for me. I was back at church, big as a barn already - even though I was not due til July. I just cried all day long. Somehow it didn't count for me. My motherhood was not a celebration for anyone. It was shameful, a big glaring spotlight displaying my bad choices.
Im happy to say my second Mother's day was much different, more a pat on the back for actually living up to what motherhood required and surviving (that far). I was no longer wasting time beating myself up for things I couldn't change. I think I just didn't have the time or was just too tired. Actually, I had begun down the road to repentance and learned that looking back did no good.
This year, who knows? Do I think Im a fabulous mom that deserves a huge celebration. HELL NO. I make do, I make mistakes, I cry lots, but I try to get the job done the best I can and pray the angels help with anything I miss. I supposed that's all any mother can do.

5 comments:

Jenn said...

I personally think Bristol's the perfect person to talk about abstinance. Who better to tell everyone of the consequences of not obstaining, than someone who is dealing with them? In AA, who usually leads the meetings? Someone who is a recovering alchaholic, or someone who has never had a drop? (not that I'm comparing alcaholics to single mothers) Yeah, we all make mistakes. Different mistakes, but mistakes nontheless. Its how we deal and learn from those mistakes that we should be judged on. But I am proud of Bristol, and you Em, for the difficult choices single moms have to make. You certainly do deserve to celebrate this mother's day. Your awesome!

Blueyedmle said...

How many AA meeting you been to Honey??? Just kidding girlie, thx

Jenn said...

I'm not an alcaholic, but I've seen them on tv. :)

Blueyedmle said...

Funny, I thought maybe your AA meetings were Aerobics Anonomous.

Jenn said...

not for the past couple of weeks. Its been either swimming laps anonomous, or sitting on my couch and doing nothing anonomous. I haven't been able to find a middle ground. but I've gotta get this fanny in gear. I've got 3 runs coming up really quick, and I've done nothing to train for them. ug