For those that know, it’s been nine years since my mother died. When she died, I never reached out for support, not to my family, not to a therapist, not to the resources at hospice, no one. I just kept living. I ignored what happened emotionally for at least five years. I knew she died, but I just didn’t have time to feel it. The structured containment I built mentally finally broke in 2007 and since then I’ve gone through the five stages of grief. The problem was I got stuck in the Anger stage to the point where I wouldn’t be able to function, took it out on Rod and the kids, withdrew from friends whose mothers were still alive and turned my back on the Creator because truth be told, I felt like my mother colluded with God to die and abandon me and I was pissed off with them both. The anger stage finally came crashing down all around me this year and I figured instead of trying to work it out on my own (because I didn’t know how anyway), I needed to talk to someone. The therapist told me I needed to accept my mother being gone. I had to readjust my life and live it in honor of what she did for and meant to me and not focus so much on the loss anymore.
On my way home from the counseling appointment, I had a conversation with myself and I realized that letting my anger go left me scared, but I coaxed myself through it and the tears I cried didn’t stress me out this time. They were actually peaceful tears. I felt a huge weight lift from me. I realized that all along there have been people who wanted to take over certain roles that she played in my life, but I kept them from doing that for me. I’ve never had a lifetime best friend, but Lisa fits that bill since we became friends. Thick and thin, dumb and smart, she’s been my passenger or driver. There are things she’s done for me that I would never ask someone to do or even accept if offered, but for some reason it’s cool with her. I’ve had my Vegas moments with her. And she knows things that I won’t tell other people. Both of the kids’ grandmothers, Debra and Ms. P, my Aunt Katie, and now Granny (Rod’s mom) share the maternal wisdom that my mother would have provided. Keisha is always ready to go shopping. I mean when I really sat down and thought about all of the people that are there when I need them, I was completely overwhelmed. My relationship with my brother is deeper in a way I can’t explain. He still refuses to mind the TMI boundaries, but I realized that all along he was there too, in his own way, as my protector when things got low and if I needed to, Devell would kick someones ass in a heartbeat and not worry about bail. And Johnson… despite our issues, has never let me down. When I needed some help, he was there and has been to help me with the kids and everything else under the sun.
I go forth with life and all these people who love me and who I love and am thankful for realizing that accepting my mother’s loss doesn’t mean I don’t honor who she was, what she taught me and all the memories, but that I learn to see her in other people and be thankful that I have them to walk the journey with me. Thanks everybody and if I haven’t told you, I love you.