I dread this day all year. My mother died when I was 23 after a short, painful battle with live cancer. Her skin was yellow and she looked nothing like the robust woman she once was. Towards the end she was particularly hostile to me. She asked me to not visit her anymore and then in her last days recanted. I was dumbfounded as I had always been so sweet and loving. When I was a little girl I would tell her happy birthday and then try to cuddle with her. Most of the time she thought it was cute, but other times her long-standing depression left her like a zombie that regarded me as a burden.
I accepted her as she was because I loved her. When she lumbered around in a Benedryl haze, I was extra quiet. Anything could set her off and she once told me that she wished she could abandon me the same way my father did. I internalized it and carried it with me. She was a deeply troubled, somewhat neglectful parent, but she was mine.
On this day people celbrate their moms and I am again alone. What ever will I do? Same thing I have done all weekend-grade papers and prepare myself for the end of the year. These papers are partly a distraction or a way to cope. It is a lesson I learned from a young age: accidents were my fault, I had no rights to my feelings, and I had to take care of the adult in my household. So today I will mark and become focused on my least favorite part of teaching and feel comforted by the fact that something out there holds on to the unbroken part of my mother.