Detox Diaries # 13

     . . .not entirely. I’m gonna need a little back story to properly explain this one. It’s necessary.
You see, when I sacrificed the lion’s share of my mental and emotional involvement with trying to get my mother’s acceptance, I began to look at her and her life with a critical eye. I started to see a person whose stubbornness about the wrong things and constant need to be right had probably cost her more than just an open relationship with her youngest daughter. I saw a person whose life more than likely wasn’t what she had thought or hoped it would be.
Looking at my mother’s life from a bird’s eye view like this made me see that it was a life that I’d never want to live. A life of dissatisfaction and complacency fueled by fear. It made me realize that my years-long quest for her approval had led me far along the path that would take me to the same fate. I had awoken from the endless nightmare to find myself in a place I never wanted to be and resolved to not give a damn about how many people I’d need to run over to get the hell back out.
As I looked objectively at all of this, my focus shifted from feeling like a failure for continually falling short of her ‘standards’ to asking myself why I fought so hard for the approval of someone I’d never want to be like. I mean, really. Why was that so important again?
I’d never . . .want to be like her. That realization was like a lightening strike to my then stress, fear, and anxiety-riddled mind. I admitted to myself that I had been doing everything humanly possible to avoid that for well over a decade. I wanted to break all the rules and escape that tiny little box that black people were “supposed” to stay confined in. To find true enlightenment and to pierce something I’d often heard referred to as “the Veil.” I was determined see beyond it no matter how terrifying it could be or if it drove me to insanity. I was starting to think that the people who fought tooth and nail to stay in that box were the real crazy ones.
I began to chastise myself for the years wasted trying to get my mother to truly accept me as I was when I further realized that . . . “HOLY CRAP!! I could have been so much further ahead in my life if I’d stopped listening to her years ago. Damn it, man!!” This one was on me and I couldn’t blame her for it. The realizations weren’t quite done rolling in yet, though. “Oh. My. God. When I think of all the things I could have learned and done . . .And I wasted so much time trying to get her to understand me when she probably never could in the first place. She just wasn’t meant to. She can’t relate to me like she can with my older sister . . .”
I was then overcome with grief. I knew I had to let that dream of experiencing a totally open, honest mother-daughter relationship go. It was probably never going to happen the way I’d always hoped it would. By then, I’d come to understand that during my life’s journey I’d go where she couldn’t. It was already happening.
OK. End of back story, back to the series . . .


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