You told me I would feel relieved when you died.

You were right, I do.

Mom,

You were abusive. And I loved you very much.

There is no shame in either statement. Both are true.

I’m glad that life, which you found so painful, is over for you. You used to tell me how much you wanted to die. I’m glad that you have what you wanted. And I’m so sorry that you felt that way.

Your joy was always brief but intense. And you never seemed to be able to remember it when it was gone. Nonetheless, you taught me how to appreciate the world. To see the beauty in ordinary things. Every time I look at the moon I think of you. You used to call me and tell me to look at it when it was especially pretty. 

I remember being on the phone with you, looking at the moon, knowing we couldn’t talk. Knowing that this was a temporary thing, wishing it weren’t, wondering why I answered. I’m glad we had that quiet moment. I’m equally glad I stood my ground when, later on you pushed and shamed and demanded something I could not give you. 

If my skin was worth anything, you would have cut it off me in a second without a thought. There was a time that I would have asked you to. Thanks to you, I thought it was okay to let people insult me, hit me, threaten my life. I thought that’s what good daughters did. 

You never believed anybody who told you they loved you, me included. You told me you loved me a lot, and I think you thought you did, but you treated me like you hated me most of the time.

I’m relieved that you are free from pain. I’m relieved because I finally know where you are and what you’re doing. I’m relieved because maybe I can stop trying to prove myself to you. 

You had an amazing smile. I wish I had more memories of it. 

2 comments

  1. Matt

    No combination of words I can come up with expresses how much I get this, feel this, and love you more than ever for this. So I send you love and when the clouds lift, will look at the moon with both sympathy and love for you both.