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January 29, 2010

genes can be funny things…

This past Christmas my daughter found a unicorn at my parents’ home and never put it down until we arrived home. She played with this unicorn all the way home. This unicorn trumped all her other Christmas presents. A unicorn! And then I realized that no matter how hard I try to influence her to like things I like now…she likes what she likes and its ok if they are the same things I liked in my youth. I’m not sure why our similarities scare me so… perhaps because

genes can be scary things…

A week before my wedding day, my mother and I were talking and I learned things about my father that I never knew. I had somehow followed his footsteps without seeing them. What is that? Is it genetic, is it coincidence, what is it? Whatever it is, it terrifies me as a mother. I do believe that my choices in life have indeed been a mixture of my nature and nurture. However, the older I become I believe even more in the nurture factor…becoming aware of my nature so that I can reflect on and respond to my natural tendencies.

I believe my nature is to be sensitive & loving, as well as controlling & needy. It is hard for me to share those last two descriptors, but they are true. Until I admit that about myself, I can not address those natural parts of who I am so that I am not imposing my control and needs on those around me.

I never knew I had control issues until I was away from my family in a foreign place and I was able to see the ugliness of my control and my selfish desires that fed those control issues.

Through these last five years, I have also come to realize how pathetically needy I am, and I hate it, my controlling self wants to not NEED anything or anyone. I absolutely abhor the vulnerability those needs bring.

So how HAVE I been addressing control and need?

Not very well, I fear.

I have learned that the control and neediness feed each other. So my first response was to withdraw from everyone- not trusting anyone with anything. Quickly I had successfully alienated myself from all those around me…and still the needy me screamed out leading the controlling me to begin over scheduling my time with others, serving, sharing, being with others. And then I again would pull away.

This pattern continued until last summer… after talking and actually hearing truth from the closest person to me…sharing with me that I seemed to have disappeared and was hard to know.

And so, through honest conversations, beginning to trust others, and now hopefully through this blogging project, I have begun the journey to know who I am and what it means to live in this world with others.

genes can be beautiful things…

I believe that God created me to be the person I am for a reason. Although I am still searching for that reason, I am content with knowing that I can remember the different things that hurt me, numbed me, and even brought joy to me when I was young. And now I am seeing many similarities in my daughter, and if my memories can help me know HER deeper and truer, then that is reason enough.

She also has someone else’s genes, and because of those I am learning more about HIM too, even after 17 years. She is a leader, a questioner, an explorer, an artist…and who knows what else.


Who knows what else we all will become…all I know is that I am finally learning, growing, reaching, and beginning to know who I am right now and that beginning restoration breathes peace.

One Comment leave one →
  1. Emily permalink
    October 5, 2010 9:35 am

    my mother…………………
    ……………………… constantly reminded me of how much i was like her. and unfortunately it was only in my areas of weakness. i am like her in many of my strengths: spontaneity, leadership, decisiveness in crisis…. and i am like her in my weaknesses: judgmental, my way is the right way, and pride…………….. but all i heard from her was “i don’t want you making the same mistakes i did” … this affected our relationship and her parenting. damaged it. i’m not saying i didn’t learn from her mistakes, and i’m not saying i’m upset that she told me her stories… i’m just sad that she rarely told me that i was different from her, she praised only my performance, not my personality……..

    over the years this has changed, and as i’ve slowly “proved myself” throughout highschool (which were her most trying years) she has verbalized our differences… i am finally able to view being like my mother as something to be proud of…. i now just wish she would see some more merit in who she is as a woman of faith.

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