Saturday, December 31, 2011

preparing for parents to visit

Been cleaning like a cleaning fool..I guess we only "deep clean" when someone's parents are coming, cause this is the first deep clean since May when my in-laws came to visit. About twice a year of scrubbing soap scum off showers and scrubbing down the baseboards and washing windows seems about right to me.

My mom's house was always meticulously clean, which I didn't enjoy much growing up (I prefer a house that looks lived in) but which has ramped up my anxiety re: her seeing my house for the first time. Especially since she always makes comments that makes it seem like I'm filthy. Actually the first of 2 times she came to visit me when I lived in Philly, she brought a bunch of cleaning supplies like she expected me to be living in filth. Which I'm not! It's funny, my mom always used to talk about how her cooking was never good enough for her mother- I feel the same way about cleaning and her. Can't really feel that way about cooking since she would never eat anything I cooked anyway! :)

I took down the christmas tree and we're probably going to take down the lights today. I'm not going to take the christmas cards down off my refrigerator though- christmas is over so it's reasonable to take down the tree and the lights even though we would probably leave them up a few more days if my parent's weren't coming to visit, but I like those cards, and if they have a problem with that then maybe they should send me a chanukah card and I can put those up too (we got none of those, but several christmas/holiday cards from B's family and my coworkers).

We are going to get some fruits and entenmenns cookies and bottles of water (we also have canned soda) for snacks when they get here. There's not a whole lot of kosher food where we live, so we don't have many other options.

I wrote back to my dad's email asking if they were going to stay overnight here in our guest room, which we invited them to do about 6 times and he never responded to before, and he wrote back that they booked a hotel in a small city about 45 minutes north of here so they can "get an early start on their drive home the next day." (They are visiting me on their way back to NJ from Florida). Trying to be happy they are coming at all and not focus on these bullshit hurtful excuses to not spend more than an hour or two with me (at my PhD graduation- the first and only time they have met my husband so far- they also booked a flight later that day so they *had* to leave immediately after the graduation ceremony and couldn't stick around at all). Small steps, right? At least they are coming, that is huge, for them to actually spend the night would be insanely huge.

Maybe I'll just blame this on my mom's fear of dogs...I mean my in-laws didn't stay at our house either when they visited cause my MIL is allergic to cats. It's not such a big deal...

Well, it's a new year tomorrow and maybe this is the start of a new relationship. Never in a million years would I have expected my mom to come visit me here- I thought my dad would come eventually, but for my mom to be coming to visit is huge. I hope she thinks my house is as awesome as I think it is. :) More importantly, I hope she sees when visiting that my life isn't bizzarely different from hers- no alters to satan, no crosses hanging on the wall, just a normal looking house. I think part of the problem is she thinks I live a crazy different life and that she can't relate to me, and I hope she see's that other than the dietary restrictions and not using electricity or driving once a week (On her part not mine), our lives are pretty much the same.


  1. Powerful movement forward. All of life seems to be one long process of getting used to something new.

    Sometimes we don't even know what exactly we are scared of. All we know is that this makes me feel uncomfortable...

    I don't know why but I know that it makes me feel so uncomfortable (scared threatened) that I don't even want to find out why.

  2. I'm glad to hear about all of this, AE! Good luck.


  3. wow wow looks like u have gone a long way to a good life im so far still frum and wish i can go otd what area did u grow up
    and kepp us uptated on the visit how it goes

  4. It's funny, when we became religious, my family acted as though they couldn't comprehend my life. Seriously, our holiday observances are different and we don't use electricity once/week, but we don't live a "weird" life.

    Very considerate of you to take down the tree/lights. Regarding cards, we have Christmas cards up on our fridge, gentile friends send them, we put them up on the fridge. Our "FFB" friends were amused the first time they saw them, not because they thought that they were evil, they'd just never seen them before.

    With cheap digital printing, people send them out with lots of family photos, it's really adorable.

  5. Wow. I never thought your mom would come around. To think, there may be actual potential grandparents here down the road.

  6. Just stumbled onto your blog from Mrs. Moon's place... The mother-daughter dance can be pretty clumsy even taking religion out of the mix. What you have gone through/are going through is huge. I'm glad for you that the visit went well. I appreciate your candid telling of the experience. Now, I'm going to email my daughter.


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