So Many Firsts Missed

Today I started a new job. It wasn’t my first job, but it was my first day at my new job. I was driving home from work and became sad. I thought of the “firsts”, or significant events, that I didn’t get to share with her:

  • Buying my first bra
  • My first boyfriend
  • My first period
  • My first day of high school
  • Buying a prom dress
  • High school graduation
  • Leaving for college
  • College graduation
  • My first job
  • Getting engaged
  • Shopping for a wedding dress
  • Helping me get ready for my wedding/getting married
  • Buying my first house
  • The birth of Emily
  • My divorce
  • All of Emily’s firsts
  • Marrying Mark

Looking at this list makes me wonder how not having her with me during some of these times has shaped my life (or I let shape my life). My father re-married about 14 months after my mom died. She and I had a contentious relationship from the start. She wasn’t nurturing and did not celebrate much about life. I wonder how some of my “firsts” would have been with her by my side and in my corner.

I can remember feeling jealous of friends who had their Moms with them when they shopped for their prom dress, helped get them get ready for college and/or shopped with them for their wedding dress. The most difficult time for me was the birth of Emily. My mother-in-law was wonderful but it wasn’t like having my Mom there. So many firsts with your first baby and so many questions. Was I nurturing enough? I never felt like I was. Did I encourage her enough? Was I strict enough without losing her respect?

I am not angry liked I used to be. That anger has been replaced with sadness and a lot of questions.  I don’t have many memories of my mother, and our family, in the nine years I was lucky enough to have her in my life. I wonder what our relationship would be like and what her relationship with Emily would be like. Grandmothers and grandchildren seem to share a special bond. I am sad that Emily didn’t know her Grandma Eleanor.

Tonight I mourn all the “firsts” that I missed with you mom. I hope you are proud of Emily’s firsts and how I mothered her through them.

 

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