Life as a reformed Zookeeper. Now living a life as a working mother who dabbles in karate, scrapbooking, and Coors Light!

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

The Glass Castle

...so I read this book. For those of you who don't know about it, it's a memoir written by Jeannette Walls. It's about her childhood, growing up poor and neglected. It drummed up more memories for me about my own childhood. Granted, my neglect only lasted until I was about 8.5, and I was never totally neglected. I always had my grandma to help out, so I was never left to my own devices for more than a day or two. But the fact that my own mother wouldn't take care of me has left me more than a little disturbed. Sometimes the things said in this book hit very close to home. Other times, it left me feeling thankful for those in my life who helped me get out of the situation. Still again, it left me feeling that, if Jeannette Walls could tolerate her mother, despite the larger degree of neglect, perhaps I should be a little easier on my own mother? Of course, since I wrote that letter, and since I've gotten the feeling that my own mother has written me off, there has been quite a weight lifted off my shoulders. Perhaps this is very selfish of me. I don't know. What I do know is that I'm spending more time and energy on those people who actually cared about me and who made me feel good about myself growing up. Why hold up any notions that everything is OK with my mother, in particular, when there is not one stitch of normalcy in that relationship at all? For a long time, I kept up the pretense. And what I feel most guilty about is the fact that I got to the point where I would just accept all the material things my mother would give me, even though I held such little respect for her. For that, and only that, I feel guilty. For the rest. I feel free.

4 Comments:

Blogger nain said...

It'll be ok, Steph. You just need to follow your heart and do what's best for you and your family first. Hang in there

10:07 AM

 
Anonymous Judy said...

If your mother gave you any material items, is it out of guilt that she couldn't give to you emotionally?

I have an aunt who is paranoid schizophrenic and she is written out of our lives as if she does not exist. People don't understand this, as she is ill and cannot help herself. BUT she COULD take her meds if she cared to. Until you deal with truly crazy people, no one can judge or blame.

2:47 PM

 
Anonymous Judy said...

Oh, I read The Glass castle recently. Amazing that she overcame it at all, really. Her dad just gets worse and worse....and at some point I thought he couldn't get any crazier, and he does!

You are amazingly strong, do you know that about yourself?

2:54 PM

 
Blogger Auntie said...

Sounds like a book I am going to have to pick up.

8:38 PM

 

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