[dropcap]O[/dropcap]nce again Jenna prompts me. Her post, I Want My Daughter to Like Me, brought much to my mind and frankly, choked me up a bit reading it.
Do you like me?
Right after I found my daughter, about eleven years ago, daughter did email me a few times. She even once chatted with me once on AIM.Â During one of our conversations, I asked her if she liked me.Â The memory makes me shiver and cringe with embarrassment now.Â What a stupid question for a mother to ask the daughter she gave away.Â Do you like me?Â It sounds now (and likely did then) so teenagerish, so full of angst and neediness.Â She was kind enough to respond.Â She said â€œWell, yeah, sure, I guess. I mean itâ€™s not like you are a meth head working at HotTopic. You seem fine.â€
Her phrasing made me laugh but later wonder if that is what she was expecting me to be? A meth head?
Do you like me?Â Really, Suz?Â She should have answered â€œwell, you apparently did not like me, did you?â€
Second memory triggered by Jennaâ€™s post?
Will I ever be good enough?
Since the day I surrendered my daughter I have been on the furiously fast hamster habitrail goingâ€¦well, somewhere.Â Finish school. Build a good career. Buy a nice house. Be a good mom to my parented sons. Make good money.Â Be healthy. Lose weight. Go to the gym. Decorate the house. Do the yard work.Â Buy plants for the yard. Be a better cook. Â Do this. Do that.Â Do not stop. Go. Go. Go.Â You must improve yourself.
I am not joking about the intensity. The desire for self improvement is overwhelming at times.Â I can always be better, right? I should keep working on myself? I cannot idle.
What is wrong with me right now? I do have a nice home, a good job, great sons who are doing well, a good husband.Â I am getting my health under control.
So what is with this intense desire to make myself, well, something other than what I already am?
Type A Overachiever or something else?
Back to Jenna (and where I start to cry).
What if she does some day agree to meet me?Â I have to be good enough to meet, right?Â I was not good enough to parent her so why would I ever be good enough to meet?Â Maybe if I am prettier, smarter, thinner, more educated, more therapized, I will finally get the golden ticket to a meeting, right?
Did I make good use of our time apart? Did I make myself into something or am I that meth head working at Hot Topic?
I realize this all sounds sad, or pathetic, or something.Â I also realize it is illogical.Â Yet knowing those things does not make me feel them less.
I am the young girl furiously preparing herself for prom hoping someday she will be asked to the dance.
While I regularly say getting dressed is the best part of going out, I sort of do not want to prep anymore.
Or do I?