Thursday, May 12, 2005

Happy Birthday, Mother

I’ve been thinking a whole lot about my mother lately as I look for a new therapist. I have finally started to believe that Rebecca is right – I do have a number of unresolved issues concerning my mother that I need to explore. When she died and was cremated 15 years ago, I left that urn with the ashes in its niche and simply didn’t process her death. I never grieved for her. I simply put my thoughts for her on hold – sort of like pausing a CD. I recently realized that it is time to acknowledge all my feelings about her life and about her death and about our relationship.

A year ago I first met Rebecca, my massage therapist. She is definitely not your ordinary person. She is a witch, for starters. She obviously believes in magic and spells and astrology and reads people’s energy fields, just as she would their tarot cards. She is bisexual. She is Jewish. She lives with her dog in the basement apartment of a house on Capitol Hill owned by a gay couple. She is funny. She writes an interesting BLOG. Getting a massage from her is like being in nirvana for 75 minutes.

My first massage last year was the beginning of a giant awakening of my body, mind, and soul. Years and years of kinks in all three areas started to release. I began to realize how starved for nurturing my body was and Rebecca’s “Mother Superior” massage was just what I needed. I finally started to reach out naturally to hug friends and relatives, something that has always been difficult for me to do. You are probably wondering how in the world this relates to my mother’s birthday! What I have just come to realize is that this entire past year I was starting to reconnect with my mother through this process.

When I was a child, I don’t remember experiencing a lot of physical affect with my parents. I always knew that they loved me, but there was just not a lot of touching. My mother joked about the “cold Norwegians” (my father’s family was Norwegian), but she was not terribly affectionate either. I remember her coming in to kiss me goodnight AFTER she thought I was asleep. What was that all about?

So with my eyes closed during a massage, I think I have unconsciously been experiencing my mother’s loving touch and it has been wonderful. I just wish, especially on her birthday, that she was here so that we could reach out to each other with our eyes open and have a good long hug.

I am so looking forward to talking to my new therapist about so many things regarding my mother and my father, but especially my mother. It will be difficult because they are no longer around to participate in the discussion, but hopefully I will be able to better understand our relationship and to experience their physical affection even in their absence.

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