Sunday, January 09, 2005

When the Going Gets Tough

the tough buy shoes.

Actually, I needed a pair of black pumps, or some other reasonably professional looking black footwear without an ankle strap. I have a pair of ankle strap heels which are very cute but just do not go with everything. I needed very clean, plain, basic black shoes. Would you believe I went to FOUR stores! FOUR stores before I found black pumps in 7 medium! Did all the 7 medium women get there before me? But I did triumph in the end:

Pumps and slingbacks, both on sale, on a "buy one pair, get the other 50% off" deal. Can't beat it. And I would never have believed that those pumps with the extremely pointy toes could be so comfortable, but they are just insanely comfortable.
I have never bought such pointy-toed shoes. I will not dismiss them without trying on again.

Why did the going get tough, you ask? Because of a series of familial phonecalls, on various crises which Catherine Cannot Fix no matter how endlessly and whimperingly my mother whines about it, but thanks for sharing gratutitiously upsetting me. Am I the ONLY responsible adult in the gene pool? Apparently so, because I am called about everybody's emergencies, even those I have absolutely no ability to help. Perhaps the spike in my own blood pressure somehow gives an energy boost to everybody else. I will spare you all the particulars, but it's an elderly parent thing. It hit right before yoga yesterday, and I really thought it would override/consume any enjoyment/enrichment I got from the yoga class, but honestly, the yoga worked. The cellphone call with the latest Crisis Catherine Can't Do Anything About But I'll Call Just to Whine at Her hit right as I was turning into the lot at the yoga studio. The yoga class overrode it. It may be the blood-pressure saving tool I really need.

I am so cold. I really am. But you know, I fucking gave at the caregiver office. I simply have nothing left, my batteries are dead, my well is dry, insert analogy of your choice here. I'm done. I could summon reserves for my children, but honestly, I have nothing left for my parents. My parents have always sucked the joy and postive anything out of me like a couple of emotional vampires all my damn life and I'm 46 years old, and I'm done. The Bloodbank is closed. It's either shut down and not get into it, or have my own goddamn heart attack. I won't bore you with the decades of psychodrama, but trust me, I have damn good reasons for being such a cold bitch. I do not feel guilty. I will go to yoga and buy shoes.

I think the felted yoga mat from Last Minute Knitted Gifts is meant to be. It's done in Manos, and I have that lovely blue Manos-like product in the stash. I need to test-swatch it for felting.


Anonymous said...

You're not alone in this, Catherine. I can count the number of friends who have self-sufficient and wonderful parents on one finger of one hand. The next thing they try is the "you've changed, you've become so ____ (hard, cold, etc, fill in the blank)." Don't succumb, chica. Emotional and/or financial vampires are bottomless pits of hunger. Sorry you're going through it but know you've got MANY sisters in solidarity on this one..
aka FiberTribe

Geogrrl said...

Don't let them get to you--even if they are your parents. I can't stand emotional blackmail, and I've had enough of it used on me growing up.

They are adults and have been for longer than you have been. Therefore, they have more life experience and are responsible for, and can fix, their own problems.

Don't give in.

Catherine said...

Thanks for the support - only those who have been sucked dry by vampire parents - usually mothers, am I right? - GET it. I have had to become very harsh and make my mother deal with life, because whenever there is any blip of stress in her world she turns into a big old blob of blood-sucking psychic vampire, like a 5 foot tall man-o-war jellyfish. It would be so easy to take control of their issues but dammit, I just don't have the energy. They fucked up the first 20 years of my life, they aren't getting this end too. My dad is now in the hospital, I talked to him, he's in good hands, he sounds okay, she's actually better since he's hospitalized than she was when she was calling me asking me to Play Doctor from 2 hours away. Picture the most pathetic whining voice in the world: "Oooh, are you still going out of town on Tuesday?" (Yes, because I have to support myself.)

I live two hours away from them because for the past ten years they have refused to move closer so I COULD have a hope of being there in a crisis and still having a life. It was a control game. I am an only child, and I am expected to sacrifice my life to meet THEIR needs.

Fuck it, I'm not jumping. My phone works wherever, I still didn't graduate from med school in the middle of the night, and it's not a real crisis yet (for which I really would drop everything) and probably won't be one. If I ran out of work every time there was some Parental Issue and dragged my ass across the state to do the Dutiful Daughter dance, I would have no job now. I would lose everything my husband and I worked for all of our lives, go bankrupt, piss my life away, but hey, then I could live with her and take care of her full time, like one of those Aunt Bea women she really wants me to be. God, I really can't stand my mother. Her own life reeked because her mother controlled her until she died when my mother was in her 40s, and damned if she isn't trying to recreate that nightmare with me. Now THAT is parental love. Been there, had a front-row seat for that movie, I ain't playing.

Anonymous said...

Cute shoes! Keep that boundary firm . . . don't let those pointy toes ever cross! Mom will just have to Grow Up. You've got ONE life to live, C.