My mom is never satisfied with me, either. Even when I do the things that she thinks she wants me to do, her anxiety is never quelled. Oh my goodness, if only you had a graduate degree! Oh, now you have a PhD by the age of 30, well, why don't you get a job. Oh you got a job, but it's the wrong kind. But what if you don't get married? If you marry a non-Jew I'll put my head in the oven. What's the matter with your Jewish boyfriend that you aren't married yet? Oh now you are getting married, but why aren't you letting me plan the wedding, your wedding is going to be too weird, etc. etc. etc.
Instead of being able to set my own priorities and goals, I feel the same anxieties. Why aren't
I thin? Why haven't
I succeeded in establishing myself in a career? Why haven't
we made enough money to buy a house, all her friends' children have bought houses! I can't believe I'm 38 and jobless and living in an apartment I can barely afford.
What if she's right and I'm parenting all wrong? (Okay but the last one has been pretty easy to fight, because my ds is quite obviously the most stupendous wonderful guy ever in the world.)
I figure that my mom will never stop being anxious and will never stop pushing. So I'm plunging on ahead and hoping that what I'm doing is really enough for me, that I can figure out what would be a good goal for me.
Now it took me until my 30th birthday to even understand that my mom was so critical and mean because of her anxieties, so you are way ahead of me! I recommend that you plunge on ahead and make some beautiful artwork and raise your beautiful girls. If you want to have a baby, have a baby. Don't ask for your mom's approval, especially not about the art. My dh still hasn't told his mom that he got a grant from the local arts council for his poetry, because she is so negative about his artistic ambitions. (By the way, a grant from your local arts council could give you enough to rent a small studio space.
) My dh explained to me that letting my mom in on the decision making process was where I got hamstrung. I always feel like I have to let my mom know that I am working on whatever is making her anxious, and that's when she gets me. So you have to have something else to talk about with your mom.
(I'll let you know when that works for me! :LOL)