I met myself when I was 38.
Mom died 1279 days ago, or 3.5 years for those who aren’t ticking it off day by day like a prison sentence. She died, out of nowhere. A curveball thrown by the universe with a deep, maniacal, slow-mo laugh echoing around my world. Mom. Dead.
All of a sudden I was thrown in a pool of my own shit. All of it. The smallness, the self-loathing. The shame. The grandiosity, the self-importance. I felt everything. Anger fear rage sadness denial depression isolation outrage numbness guilt fury sorrow. There aren’t five stages. I didn’t move through anything. It came in waves, and all at once. I drowned in my feels. I was consumed by what had happened and by who I was and how I was handling and processing—or not processing. Who I’d been no longer worked for me. I was left. With myself.
How sad that it took my mom’s voice being silenced for me to fucking hear her. Hear the praises she’d given that I’d dismissed with an eye roll. Hear the guidance she gave without brushing it off my sleeve. To acknowledge her unconditional love for who I am. My mom’s very loud, very dead voice still echoes within me saying she’s proud of me. Just as I am. Weaknesses, strengths, and all.
I met myself when mom died. I was forced to face everything about me. I was forced to make my own decisions. I saw myself in all the nasty ass, brilliant technicolor of my messy and glorious self. I saw what mom had seen. And I have chosen to believe her.
I don’t want to have “learned lessons” or “grown” from mom dying. I don’t want my mom’s death to have been a “good” thing, or to have found a “silver lining” in all the fuckupedness. Mom didn’t pass like a kidney stone, nor is she lost like some inconsequential keys. My mom died. I use those other softer words only when I’m feeling weak. But she did die. And it was horrible. And it sucks. And I’m a mess. And because she died I met my most authentic self. I looked her up and down disdainfully until I could handle looking at her with pity, then sadness, then compassion, then awe, then love. The woman my mom had met at my birth and insisted I was.
(I wrote this a little over a year ago. I haven’t posted in my blog for so long! But I’ve been working on my book. I haven’t forgot about you though.❤️)