Expect The Unexpected

Flowers and a clever pun from Cindy
I've recently how worthwhile it is to talk about hard subjects, those that everyone wants to avoid.  Whether it's bringing up the difficult topics that you'd rather ignore in a relationship, or letting someone new in on all of your baggage, there are just topics that are never easy to bring up.  So the hard topic today, for me at least, is Mother's Day.

Last year I pretended Mother's Day did not exist.  I stayed completely off social media, took a long walk, and entirely cut myself off from the world.

Well yesterday, when I realized what today's date meant, I decided to confront my fears and deal with the hard topic that would inevitably confront me.  Mother's Day is not something to hide from--hiding certainly does not do me any good.  Instead, last night I resolved to embrace the fact that I would spend this Sunday utterly depressed and anti-social, like last year.

But then something changed.  Somehow today got to be a pretty awesome day, despite the emotional roller coaster I feel like I've been riding.

I woke up early, grabbed a muffin, and skyped with my dad and my puppy.  Seeing that furry face (both my father's and my dog's, I suppose), was a nice way to start out a day that everyone else spends remembering their Mothers.  Even though neither of us explicitly acknowledged the hole in our lives, it was nice to begin the day with someone who was going through the same emotions.  Then I quickly worried over my outfit-- embarrassingly enough-- and ran down to Williamsburg for one of the most delicious breakfasts I think I've ever had.  Eggs Benedict with smoked salmon.  My first smoked salmon in years.  Pretty sure I died.  Plus the company wasn't half bad.

Then we hopped into a crowded L train (is the L ever not crowded?) and made our way to Union square to spend a few hours sorting through comics and design books, and spending way too much time in the bathroom at Strand and sorting through the exquisite nerdiness that is Forbidden Planet.  Exploring the gems of New York has never been so much fun.  There was no way I could have been sad this morning.  And it was not because I ignored Mother's Day, but because I embraced the person I was with, rather than feeling utterly alone.

But then I returned to good old Morningside Heights, a neighborhood I'm quickly tiring of, and the same sadness hit.  Everywhere I looked there were signs for Mother's Day or people calling their moms, or mothers walking down the street with flowers tucked into the strollers they were pushing.  On the subway, the conductor made an announcement wishing all the moms on board a happy Mother's Day (though tinged with sadness for me today, I did think it was an incredibly sweet gesture, especially in a city that gets so much flack for being cold and uncaring).  Tonight, I avoided going to a free comedy show because it was a Mother's Day special, and I knew I just would not be able to laugh if there were jokes about the occasion.  I felt alone and like I had to hide in my room, away from the world shoving my loneliness in my face.

But then I saw the sweet flowers and note Cindy had left me.  And Leigh sent me a text offering whatever she could do to help me through.  And I was reassured out of my sadness by someone I'm really starting to care about.

And while I still feel the loss, while I still feel alone in the world, I know that it is all in my head.  Somehow, in my twenty years of life, I gained this circle of amazing people who care about me.  I may not have my mom around to write lengthy facebook statuses about, but I have an amazing support system who are all equally worth the praise.  And I realized today wasn't about embracing the depression and embracing my loneliness, but realizing that I'm only as alone as I choose to be.

Maybe someday I'll finally celebrate Mother's Day again.  I know I said I don't ever want kids, but I also can't predict the future.  I've gotta say, it would be nice to feel happy on the second sunday in May rather than sad--it would be nice if Mother's Day were inherently celebratory again.  It would be nice to reignite the tradition of picking out flowers and planting the garden on Mother's Day--something I sorely miss.  But we shall take that one year at a time.  For now, today and every single day, I need to not let my sadness hinder me from realizing that I'm the furthest thing from alone.

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Meet The Author

I'm Madysen, born and raised in Nebraska but now living out my dreams in New York City. I moved here to go to Columbia, but living in New York has become so much more to me. This blog is a space where I can share my experiences of reconciling my midwestern upbringing with the life I live in the city. But even bigger than that, this blog serves as a space where I can try to understand where I fit into the larger social world, where I want to go in life, and how I want to go about pursuing all of these endeavors.

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