In the end, I miss her

There once was a time when I was spiritually in tune with everything going on around me. I could appreciate a soft breeze, enjoy an orange moon for more than a fleeting moment and see the All in anything, at any moment.

I don’t know what happened. I can’t pinpoint when it became such a chore to delve into the All without sinking into an abyss of self-chastising for not keeping up with my spiritual practice. It’s like the more I try to get back to a good place, the more I beat myself up for not continuing to do what I once did and the harder it becomes to reach a point of bliss.

I waffle between telling myself it’s not that hard to just devote time and space to ME and committing to taking that time for myself. I feel like a kid who is at home listening to an adult party: If I go meditate and go get a spiritual refill, what am I going to miss here? Will the kids do something? Is Rod going somewhere? What’s happening on Facebook and Twitter? The sad reality is that my electronic life is not nearly as hopping as I assume it to be and when I feed my addiction to be in the know, I realize that the only thing that changed in the last couple minutes is my workers in Restaurant City need food or rest to keep working.

Anyway, a direct result of me not taking the time to do what I need to for self is not feeling fulfilled. I thought that came from outside of myself and decided that I needed to make new friends, embark on new endeavors. I researched some organizations where I can volunteer and committed to helping out The Wellness Community in Powell once a week. I’m also looking into taking some jewelry classes at the Cultural Arts Center to get my jewelry skills on point. While these activities are not bad, they don’t address the fact that I need to spend time with me. In order to fully enjoy life, I have to let some of the spiritual baggage that I’ve accumulated over the last year go and soon.

On my last day of vacation, I intend to perform a self-cleansing and clear the house of stagnant energy. I believe a large portion of what I feel is related to old energy in the house draining my positivity and replacing it with anxiety and despondency. Why do I write that? Because there are times when the thought of physically coming home makes me ill. The physical space saps my positive energy when I walk in the door. I can count on my fingers and toes how many times that’s happened and made a potentially good evening go south in an instant.

I know there are some issues I need to deal with that relate to my mother, but since I can’t pinpoint what they are or identify the source, I let them come and go and feel whatever I feel. Sometimes the sad feelings don’t seem to correlate to her being dead, but then I think about her and I feel all the sadness and anger that I feel about her being gone. I’ve accepted it (as if I could NOT accept it) and realize that it was a pivotal part of me becoming who I am, but I will say until I die that I don’t like that it happened when I was 25. I’m not sure I’d like it when I’m 65, but 25 seems like I didn’t even have a chance to show her that I grew up and turned out fine despite some not-so-smart decisions in my early 20s. I accomplished the things I said I would. I guess they were just too late for her to be proud that I did them.

I think I’m starting to ramble. I’m sure I am and where I usually would apologize, I won’t. This is therapeutic for me. There are times when I feel a deep loss or void because I want to get these feelings out and I want someone to be able to understand where I’m coming from, but a lot of it really is just a matter of feeling and sometimes words can’t convey what’s going on inside or explain why it’s happening. It just is. A lot of times, I truly dislike that I can’t control when it comes because it just seems to come from left field. Based on what I have read and what people say, it’s a feeling that will stay with me for the rest of my life. Sigh….

I want to stop writing, but I can’t. I’m tired, but I’m also wired and feel on the brink of a breakthrough, like if I keep typing, keep listening to music, keep allowing tears I can’t explain to be fall, I’ll be okay. I tell myself that every time I sit down with these feelings and try to get them out. If I just keep typing and let it come, this will be the last time I have to feel this, feel helpless, scared, sad and angry. Want to kick something or scream or transmute the feelings into something positive or tangible to break or bury. I really just want to be done with it. I want the daughter that lives in me to get on the same program that the logical me is on: she’s gone, life goes on and so should you, but the daughter refuses to let her mother go and the anger resurfaces and shows up in situations that I don’t want them to. I get angry when people treat their mothers shitty. I get angry at the kids because they can come to me. I get angry because people have wonderful relationships with their mothers. I get angry because I get sick of being sad and feeling like I have no control over when these spells hit. If I could just figure out the trigger I’d be cool. Or maybe I wouldn’t because I’d just bury it down like I did for eight years.

I try to keep my memories alive, but as time goes on, I remember less. I generally have my feelings from events and people recall things with clarity that I forgot. That’s another thing that I really resent: how come my love for her won’t keep my memories alive? Why can’t I remember more? Why have I forgotten how she looks without finding a picture? I start to ask myself again if I truly loved her as much as I thought I did. I’m sure I did and do, but it bothers me that when I need a happy memory I get my stupid grief.

I’m still not there. I still haven’t gotten to the core of my hurt yet. My eyes are swollen, I want to lay down, but now I’ve allowed myself to let some of it come. With this comes an anxiety because I have all these feelings that I can’t process and I want to let them go, but as usual, it’s much too late to go screaming and kicking stuff around the townhouse. I wish I could go out on the patio and dig my hands in the dirt and send the feelings there, just to get them out of me so I can function. So I can get back to life and not think about this anymore and not feel like I want to take a mother and strike a deal to get mine back.

Here it is: At the bottom of all of this, I just want her to say “I’m proud of you, Berry.” And I can say “Thanks, Ma. I told you I’d get it right and I’d stop making the same mistakes. See? I did it. I went to graduate school and I finished and I learned to accept that I have limitations and accept those things that are coming home and calling me Mommy. I got it, Mommy. I GOT IT!” and we can both laugh. But I don’t get that chance. I know somewhere in the universe she knows all this, but it’s so hard to imagine and I swear the next person that tells me she’s proud of me may need an eye patch.

I feel this a lot. I know I should let it go, but how does a person just let go? It’s not that easy to say ‘okay…. I’m not going to get that’ when it’s really what fuels the healing. It explains why I keep having these episodes when I feel completely angry and cheated. It explains why although I did finish college and try to be a good mom to the kids, I still feel like one of the three most important people I wanted to show I could do it didn’t get the chance to see the end result. It explains why I waffle between loving and hating her. I love her for being all the things she was to me, for imparting in me when I was younger wisdom that I would need now. I hate her because I feel like she deserted me. She left and she left at a time when I needed her most. I was abandoned and I didn’t have anyone to turn to. I was stranded like Tom Hanks in Castaway, except I didn’t even have Wilson. I had a newborn, a marriage I didn’t want anymore and nowhere to look for guidance.

In the last nine years, I’ve figured out a lot on my own because I had to. Maybe once or twice I’ve been completely honest about how I truly feel about this part of my life, but the reaction made me realize that there are some things that don’t need to be said out loud. Explaining how it feels to lose a parent isn’t the same as losing one. And for the people I know who lost parents, even our experiences and feelings aren’t the same. It’s a solo journey for all of us, the only life journey I desperately need and want to take with someone else.


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