Mom, you don’t like when I…

19 Jul

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Today, during yet another difficult call to Russia to check on mom, she has notified me that she “doesn’t like” the kind of person I have become in America. So, mom, what you are trying to say is that…

You don’t like that I am independent, reflective, creative. You don’t like that I have put myself through school, made Dean’s list every time, and received a 3.86 and 4.0 GPA for bachelor’s and master’s degrees, respectively. You don’t like that I have a fulfilling career, that I am a sought-after educator on both secondary and higher education level, and that I am going for my doctorate.

You don’t like that I don’t accept any nonsense from anyone. You don’t like that I truly live my best life and don’t concern myself with what people think. You don’t like that I don’t compare myself to others and that I am exceptionally happy with who I am. You don’t like that I don’t conform to the “Russian norm” and go on trips with my friends, living my husband at home. You don’t like that he is OK with that and supports me all the way about my travels. You find it strange that we trust each other and our marriage is based on mutual respect, open communication, and acceptance.

You don’t like that I speak my mind about things that make me unhappy. You don’t like that I change things that make me unhappy. You find it weird that I refuse to give up. You don’t like that in America I have learned how to calmly say “no” and not feel bad about it. You don’t like when I don’t feel guilty when you guilt trip me every time we talk and call me a bad daughter. You don’t like that I refuse to get sucked into your drama and don’t allow it to get to me. You call me “strange and not from this world” because I have leaned not to sweat the small stuff.

You don’t like that I talk to Dad and have a great relationship with him and his side of the family. You find it strange that, just because you have a terrible relationship with them, that I don’t. You don’t like that I am my own, and a very successful, person.

You don’t like that I forgave you a long time ago. You don’t like that I clearly and calmly communicate about the issues we are having. You don’t like that I refuse to stop calling and still call every week to check up on you.

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