Fat, skinny. Fat, skinny. Fat. Homeless, Poor, Homeless, Poor. Fall, Crawl, Fall, Crawl.
I’ve witnessed the progression, learning to numb to its effects, to her, to her treatment of me.
Looking back at who she was in my childhood, teenage years and young adulthood, I would have bet a million dollars she would be dead by now. I expected it. Anticipated it. Mentally prepared for it.
Today though, she comes to me in sobriety. Years and years ago meth and heroin addiction were buried. One year ago her tobacco addiction was buried. Six months ago she let go of marijuana and 90 days ago she let go of alcohol, the hardest to let go of all, she said.
Fat stage. She is working on her food addiction now, struggling. We have that in common. My mother and I.
I’ve asked her how she’s overcome her addictions and she tells me she does not know. She attributes her strength and her growth only to G_d. I am still curious.
I know the odds of overcoming the addictions are against her. She has a lack mindset, knowing she ‘deserves’ better but not quite believing she can do better. She ‘thinks’ poor.
She was a shitty mother, full of so much vitriol, anger and hate that I was sure I could not possibly be of her blood or have come from her body.
I breathed in hatred long before I learned to know the smell of love and want to bake my life in its essence.
I think I should be proud of her but it isn’t pride I feel. It a joyful sorrow really. At the pain we all must endure on the way to the rainbow’s end.
This once shitty mother has unknowingly exhibited a ‘fight’ mindset, teaching me never to give up. With this comes the lesson of acceptance. Of others. At whatever place they stand on the rainbow, with the knowledge that we all deserve to reach the gold.
I could have never known the value of the pain as I fought to see and stand through the endless tears.
It seems that my role at this time in life is to stay strong and to let her know how rich she truly is. To help her ‘see’ the gold she does not ‘feel’ worthy of.
These are lessons I have been severely wounded to secure and ones which I am proud to be able to pass down to my children, without combat.