So many people talk about the deadbeat dad. We focus time on looking at the men in children's lives who missed out on the growing up, on the birthdays, and graduations. But the thing is, a father isn't the only parent who can choose to leave. Mothers do it too. They can just as easily walk away, and want nothing to do with the child they gave birth to, leaving us wondering.
The pain of having a parent remain invisible in our lives is hard. They don't just miss out on our events and getting to know who we are, they miss out on understanding who we are. They don't ever get to see what we accomplish in our lives, or the passion that hides behind the eyes.
You're also left figuring out your own truth. Like why she didn't want you, how will you cope with relationships, who will give you advice when you need it...
Your heart gets a little hardened because you have to figure some crucial things out yourself.
You don't know that person as a "mother" you know her as a stranger. And life is just as hard. Life is just as crazy, hectic, and empty.
It gets overwhelming growing up watching what your friends had and what you never would.
You grow up wondering what life would be like if she was there. You get overwhelmed at the sight of your friends' mothers, being there giving the advice and love you never felt from her.
You think of how many times you went to your dad for help, asking questions about things maybe he found a little bit difficult to understand...it broke you at times. It made your heart jealous because as much as you craved that affection from her it was never to be found.
You find her in the smallest of things, wondering how life could have been different.
You think of her often. Wondering how different you could have been if she invested in you. If she never chose to leave you behind. You long for the scent, the clothes, the more than picture memories. And the pain does not lessen, but the desire to want her there grows. So you learn to cope with it.
Even though people tell you to focus on the life you have, and the people who love you...maybe you wonder if she ever loved you in return. If that potential relationship of mother and daughter could have been something.
You build your walls, afraid of letting people in as a result of thinking someone else might abandon you.
People notice. The person who was supposed to nurture you never did, and perhaps you felt the need to guard your heart as a result. The loss of your mom doesn't feel good. It strips you down, leaves you wondering why could she live a life without you and leave behind her own flesh and blood.
Time doesn't seem to heal all wounds.
You grow because you know you have to move forward in this life. You don't want to stay where the pain is. But getting through an entire day sometimes gets exhausting.
In your heart, it kills you a little. The big days seem to hurt more. The fact you got through college doesn't feel like as much of an accomplishment. She wasn't there to give you advice about the first lover you had. She won't see the new baby, or family, or firsts of anythings. Holidays seem cruel over and over.
But then you remember it is not good to be so hard on yourself.
That her leaving had nothing to do with you, and that it's not your fault she never stuck around. You remember you are living your life to please yourself. And you remember that those who have always invested in you will stay.
You are a soldier and have been for the longest time, and those who love you will remind you to keep fighting.
Will remind you that while this person left you - your courage and your grace to move forward trumps all the pain you've been caused as a result.
It will never, not hurt thinking about how she left. You will never grasp the word "mother." It feels like it will never stop hurting. But you must realize you can't let it stop you. You can't let it keep you from moving forward in a life you deserve to live.
Though it will shape you, the loss of your mother does not define you.
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