For some periods of my childhood, I believed I was adopted. My parents were hard on me because they believed as the first child I would have to be responsible for my siblings. Throughout puberty, they existed solely as a necessity machine: money, food, clothes, shelter. As I meandered out of my teens and into the twenties, we would go through intermittent times of strife and then bliss. Of both my parents, my mum was the disciplinarian and I had a hard time bonding with her in any way growing up. It has only been in recent years that we have grown closer. It did not happen under the best of circumstances but I am glad it happened. My mother has become my staunchest supporter and the little things she has done for me have been priceless: cooking for a get together I had for my friends, getting up early to make me breakfast or cooking a meal for me that I requested. They might seem minute but I would never have imagined the mother I knew growing up would ever do that.
My parents just apologised to me for the transgressions of a relative against me and I cannot even begin to describe the range of emotions I am going through right now. For one, my parents especially my mum did not believe in apologies so this makes the event even more momentous. Secondly, I could hear the pain in my mother’s voice when she spoke to me. It was the pain of a mother who feels powerless to right the wrong caused against her child. A mother who thought she was entrusting her child to family and had that trust broken. A mother who has been a fighter all her life and is now relegated to the stands watching without a way to get in and fight. Which brings me to a conversation I had with my cousin who is now a new mother. She said it was my life’s duty to become a mother and I vehemently disagreed. I am sure there are plenty of joyous periods of motherhood but being the pessimist that I am, they do not seem adequate enough to chance it and end up feeling the hurt and anger my mother must feel right now.
I love you Mother.