… Expect the worst response imaginable and hope for a little understanding.
Planning everything before calling my parents seemed like a good plan until I found myself talking to my mother on the phone last night about my impending trip. I already knew what was going to be said before I called, which is probably why I put off doing so for a little longer than intended. You see, I feel like I’ve had the same upsetting conversation with my mother every time I’ve made some decision regarding my life… changing my major in college… taking a trip to Germany after graduation… Deciding to do AmeriCorps and moving to Tucson. I think you get my point. At the end of all of these conversations I felt drained and like I must be the most disappointing daughter imaginable. Yesterday evening was no different. In fact it was actually worse. I found myself hearing every argument I’ve heard a million times before: you haven’t thought this through, you’ll be too far away for us to take care of you if something happens, you can’t afford that, you’ll be sold into sex slavery…. the list goes on and on. Then at the end of the objections, my mother had to get off the phone because she was so upset with me. She ended the conversation. It had never happened before. I had never made my mother this mad or felt so horrible in all my life.
Now don’t get me wrong, I love my mother! I also understand her concerns. What I can’t understand is how even after all of the decisions she was against had good outcomes, she doesn’t think I’m capable of handling my trip. Sure my life hasn’t been perfect, but I’ve done a great job making myself happy and carving out a life I’m proud to have lived in the process. While my decisions might not always be conventional, I’m a happy, healthy 25-year-old with a college degree and an understanding of poverty, who has no children and little debt to speak of. I’d say I turned out okay. I owe that to my parents who taught me how to be the person I am today. Without them I wouldn’t have had the courage to believe I was capable doing the things I have. I don’t mean to cause them stress, but I do.
So here I am now, less than a day later feeling like the worst child any parent could ask for, writing a post about the whole ordeal… I’m definitely not winning any best daughter awards this year and I still have a non-refundable ticket to Bangkok.