Before I became a mom, I knew there was one thing I wanted and that was to not be like my mother. I didn’t grow up with her, and while I loved her with all my heart, I didn’t feel like that love was reciprocated. My mother was like a ghost in my life, appearing here and there. Always traveling for her business, barely seeing her. I did not start calling her mom until I turned eight, and it was only because I wanted to mimic that sound that others around me made when they called their mom. It was always next to me today and gone the next day. Terrible. This is the reason to this day I have a hard time trusting older women, I don’t easily attach to people and I’m not great at showing affection.
Now that I’m a mom, I just want one thing: to be like my mom, and that is to do my best. As an adult today, I understand that she did her best. Things aren’t so black and white and there aren’t always right or wrong, simply different perspectives. Getting pregnant at 17 isn’t easy. Growing up at the same time as your child is a horrible predicament to be in.
And the best she did was to have my grandfather raise me. If not for this single decision, I wouldn’t be the person I am today. If not for it, I would not be this much into books, much less writing. I wouldn’t know what it’s like to have someone love you, absolutely love you. I’ve been spoiled by my grandfather. I know what it’s like to have a man love and support you. To know that no matter what there is always going to be someone there for you. Come rain or shine, this person will never leave you.
If your parents hurt you, it’s time to forgive them and understand that they aren’t the perfect people you thought they were. No one is perfect.
I think this opens up a bigger conversation about growing up and realizing that our parents are (were) just people. With their qualities and their flaws, their insecurities, and their strengths. They weren’t perfect, and so aren’t you.
Also, childhood experiences have such a stronghold on who we become as adults. It’s important to understand this part of ourselves so we can better understand who we are and become a version of ourselves that we’re comfortable with and proud of.
The good news is that we can’t change the past, but we can always influence the future (within certain limits).
I can decide what kind of mother I want to be for my child, and to me that represents power. The power I have to positively influence the life of someone other than me. That’s everything.