For as long as I can remember I grew up thinking I didn’t love my mum and worse, I blamed my mum for everything. At the time I believed she was the cause of all my misery and if only she was different, better or like someone else’s mother, my life would be okay.
I grew up constantly trying to change my mother; constantly telling her what she was doing wrong and how she needed to change. My mum is a deeply caring person and because she cares so much, she was often doing things for others at her own expense. I remember a time when we were at the theatre; it was late and I expressed how hungry I was. My mum being the mum she was, offered to go and get me food. Sweet in itself, but for her to do that meant going out into dark deserted city streets on a cold and rainy night. I was appalled that she would want to do that, and told her so in the most unloving way.
What I didn’t express was how much it hurt to watch my mum, a woman I had adored since I was born, continually make choices that were inconsiderate to herself, continually neglecting herself for the benefit of putting others first.
As you would imagine my outburst did not go down too well and even though I didn’t want to see it, I really hurt my mum; to her she was offering support and love and couldn’t understand why I would react so badly. It wasn’t until I was about 26 years old that I started to realize that my quest to change my mother did not work – all it did was to cause further distress, distrust and reaction, increasing the stress on our already tenuous relationship.
What I came to realise is the only person I had the power to change was me.
From that moment on I started to look at all the ways I wanted my life to be different and what I could do to make that happen. I found this a difficult process and my solution was to cut my family out of my life. All I knew was they were hurting me and I couldn’t get them to change, so the most loving thing I could do – so I thought – was to cut them out of my life. I even told my mum that I couldn’t be around them as it hurt too much . . . ouch, my poor mum! I still remember the look on her face.
So I lived that way for a year or so, only attending ‘important’ family events, thinking what I was doing was self-loving. Then I came across the workshops presented by Serge Benhayon and Universal Medicine, where (people) Serge spoke about self–responsibility and bringing love to yourself and then being that love with everyone else. Boy did the light bulbs come on!
I was not being loving with my family – I was still blaming them and I didn’t take responsibility for my own choices. I discovered I had a major issue with expression and all the things I had not expressed had bottled up inside my body like one big gaping oozing hurt. Once I started expressing how I really felt, those hurts started to decrease bit by bit.
Today I know no one can hurt me: the only thing that truly hurts me is holding back from expressing my true feelings.
If I had told my mum how I truly felt; that her offering to get me food on that cold and rainy night made me really sad, that I adored and cherished her more than anything else, and for her to willingly put herself in danger for me was not something I cherished but something that deeply hurt. I am sure that speaking my truth in that moment rather than reacting would have received an entirely different response.
I always envied those children who said they adored their parents. I never felt that way and it really hurt because deep down I knew I loved my mother dearly. What I have come to discover in my own healing is that my mother loves me dearly too.
We just happened to be each other’s biggest reflections – constantly reflecting to each other all the ways we did not love and adore ourselves.
Thanks to my commitment to truth, love and healing I have no more barriers in the way of just simply loving my mum.
In fact today I can joy-fully share that I not only love my mum, I adore her. She is the most beautiful woman in the world to me. And I am truly blessed that she is my mum.
By Caroline Raphael
Published with permission of my Mum.
What Mothers Teach Daughters
Expressing Love: I Love You