the first chapter

is all about mom.  this is where i need to establish what it is about her that makes her kids want to kill her.  she talks to each of them on the phone and pushes all their buttons during ther conversations.  we see it all from mom’s point of view, and from her point of view there’s nothing wrong except a bunch of kids who won’t grow up and don’t give her the respect she deserves.  she’s consumed with her own problems, which i can’t call to mind right now, and is disappointed that her kids didn’t grow up to be what she wanted, and frustrated that they won’t listen to her even tho she’s mom and automatically knows best.

it’s rather lame, tho.  they kids hate their mom because why?  because she’s never satisfied.  because they didn’t turn out right and they can’t live with her disapproval.  that’s kind of lame.  rational adults would never be motivated to kill by lack of approval…

mom thinks judy’s a loser because she’s an old hippie, never finished college, got involved in some new age practice and is a pseudo quack, when mom’s ambitions for her oldest daughter were full-strength projections of grandma’s ambitions for mom.  judy was supposed to turn out like katherine hepburn, but instead ended up more like gidget.  she thinks judy is trying to steal money from her to buy drugs and alcohol.

she thinks cindy’s a loser because her daughter tried to make such a carbon copy of herself, and not up to her standards, either.  where mom has good taste, cindy just has expensive taste.  where mom married old money, cindy married a rich blue collar worker.  it’s embarrassing how obsequious cindy is, as if she didn’t have a mind of her own.  she thinks cindy is trying to steal her jewelry and antiques.

she thinks rick’s a loser because he’s so critical of her and tries to tell her how to run her life, while his house is falling down around his ears and his wife and kids go hungry.  he’s so intolerant and has such high principles and yet he takes shortcuts and welches on his obligations.  she thinks he’s trying to steal her house and property.

she thinks the youngest son (my kid wants me to call him ely) is a loser because she’s supporting him.  he just can’t get his head out of the clouds and she’s always pulling his ass out of the fire, and he always promises to improve, but she suspects he’s still doing things he shouldn’t.  altho he’s ripping her off right and left, she doesn’t think he’s trying to steal anything because he was always the baby and besides she gives him everything already.

these attitudes show differently from the kids’ viewpoints, of course.  they hate it that mom thinks they’re losers.  they all hate it that they’ve tried so hard to be good kids (in their own ways) and to get mom to recognize their goodness and love them.  they all feel rejected to their core, cover it over different ways, and smolder with resentment for decades.

this is so lame.  what kind of motivation to kill your mom is being misunderstood?  aren’t they all adults with lives of their own?  what makes mom’s opinion so strong that they’ve got to silence it to live?  i’m not feeling this…

my problem is that i can’t feel the emotions, because i’m not actually in a hate relationship with my mom.  i can remember a time when i was, but i can’t get back to it, and so i can’t write it.  i’m going to have to be involved emotionally in order to write well, and the kind of hatred and anger you have to feel to want to kill someone is sort of difficult when you’re at peace.  i can write about anxiety just fine.  i can rant about evil corporations.  but i’m going to have to expose some pretty old raw nerves to write about why i would want to kill my mom.  not raw, really, cauterized.  gotten over because i’m in my 50s and not as stupid as when i hated my mom.  back in my teens.  if i’d only seen it as an attempt to live life on my own terms and not projected it all on my mom, i’d have treated her differently.  i’d be a different person now.  so i guess it all had to happen that way.  but that’s another post.

but i do get sharp waves of irritation when she says certain things in a certain tone of voice, when i feel her dismiss what i’ve said, what i believe in, what i’ve staked a lot of my life on, me – when you get down to it.  when i feel her dismiss me, it’s like an elevator floor dropping out from under my feet.  but hate, hate is not irritation but something more abiding.

i have judy’s amnesia about my childhood, her ability to override all the bad vibes and concentrate on peace and love.  cindy however, she saves things up and still hates mom intensely for things that happened when she was 8.  and rick looks for things to use against her, to beat her into submission with.  and i’m-not-sure-who finds an opening in everything mom says so he’s not pin-downable.

i guess it’s late.  i’ve been up for my usual 2 hours in the middle of the night and i’m either getting sleepy or getting hungry.  my phone’s been out for over a week, or i would have told my mom that i’m going ahead with the book and given her the url.  i don’t like the sound of texting her phone with it – here look how we hate you – i figure i want to let her know it’s not about her before letting her loose in it.  besides, i remember clearly, tho she mightn’t, how enthusiastic she was about the idea when i told her about it last year.  she remarked that she wanted to write a book about her family, too, but that she was going to tell the truth.  i encouraged it, and think she ought to have a blog so that she can rant and rave at will.  but you know, moms never listen.  they’re just like kids.


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