Friday, February 13, 2009

About my mother (Part 6 of 6)

I asked her about my family from my dad’s side, because I haven’t had much contact with them. My parents split when I was 6 or 7 years old, I don’t remember much about him, I just remember that he loved oregano (a spice) and I knew that he was a drunk.

I was 18 years old when I heard that my dad passed away.
A year before this, I went to look for him, he was living in Los Angeles, it was an 8 hour drive from where I lived. I never told him that I was coming, only my aunt (his sister) knew, I went to his house and he wasn’t there; he took sometime off and went to another state. I could not wait for him to comeback; I just left him a note and a picture of myself and slipped it under the door. I heard from him a week after, he said he was sorry that he missed me, thought that I was a beautiful girl and told me that he loved me. Did not say that he will come and visit me or that I should be back some other time but I figured that if he was a drunk he was probably always smashed (deliriously drunk) and did not want me to see him that way. I really did not care what he said; I was over the fact that I did not have a dad.
When my mom told me that he was really sick, I went to see him, I saw this skinny man lying in bed, he looked like a stranger, I did not recognized him, I did not look like him. He was high on medication and although he knew who I was, he did not talk to me, he said to my aunt “My daughter is prettier then yours” I was so embarrassed. I left because there was nothing I could do he had cirrhosis; the doctor only gave him a couple of months to live.

When I heard that my dad died, I did not feel anything, I did not shed a single tear, I was not angry at him, nor bitter or resentful, it was like listening to the news. I had nothing to say. I refused to go to the funeral because I believed that there was no point on going since he was dead, I saw him when he was alive. When my mother came back from the funeral she brought back a couple of t-shirts from my dad, letters, Identification cards, pictures etc. I did not know what to do with it, so I tossed it. I just kept the t-shirts and used them as pajamas.

I asked her about why she left my dad, she told me how abusive and drunk he used to get, how he used to wake her up by the hair at 3 or 4 in the morning to make him something to eat, that if she would not respond to him when he was talking he would spit in her face, on how he used to beat her and told her that he was going to kill her if she left. She never told me this before, all this time I knew that he was a drunk but I did not know all the details.

All of sudden I started to remember…… I especially remember that it was my birthday( I don’t remember how old I was) I remember my mom getting off the phone and she started crying. I told her mom, do you remember that?, she said yes, I am surprised you remember this, I was crying because your father's lover called me and said: David is not going to your fucken daughters birthday party, he is staying with me, he does not love you. My father never made it to my birthday party.

I said to my mother, mom I also remember that one day I found you in the bathroom banging your head in the wall and pulling your hair out. She said” I did not think you saw it, I am ashamed, I was feeling helpless, your father was beating me everyday for no reason, I had no money, I was very young, I was living illegally in a country were I knew no one, I did not speak the language, my family disowned me because I left to be with your father, you were so young, I did not know what to do. She also told me that I was 4 years old and when I defended her from my father, he was strangling her, she told “you saved my life because he would have killed me”
I was crying because I had no idea that she went through all this, I was starting to remember many things that some how I’ve blocked. I don’t know why I could not remember before. I was understanding this mess, I was starting to see the whole story, her past have determined the person that she was now. My mother was not perfect but she did the best she could. She tried to give us the best in material things, that was her way of telling us that she loved us.

As I am writing this I am feeling “un nudo en la garganta” in Spanish it literally means a lump in ones throat it means getting all choked up(sad, and speechless.) I know that I was meant to have this mother.

I am thankful for the good things that I have learned from my mother, her compassion towards the needy, her generosity with the poor, her sensitivity, her spirituality. Life did not give her what she want, life was very unfair to her, life crushed her dreams and aspirations, and life was a bitch. Maybe life was using my mother to make a way for me, to do things differently for myself and my children to be. Life was selfish with my mother but generous to me.

I have found a new respect for my mother, I am appreciative of my mother.I am just glad that we were able to patch things up while she still alive. I know she is not perfect and neither am I. I know that probably in the future we will have our differences but I am not holding grudges any more, I will see things differently. I am proud to be my mother’s daughter.

There are things that lie in the past that I cannot change and in a way dictates who I am. I must learn from my experiences and take them as blessings. I cannot dwell in the past and wonder what would’ve happened if things were different, I am exactly where I need to be.


bobbyd1536 said...

"I cannot dwell in the past and wonder what would've happened if things were different, I am exactly where I need to be."

Very deep, very expressive, very appreciative you shared. Thank you for the kind words you left in regards to my page. I very much enjoyed the few words I was able to read on your page. I will definelty be sure to visit again. Stay up and Stay lovely. Peace, Respect, and Blessings.


"Those who bring sunshine into the lives of others cannot keep it from themselves."
-James Matthew Barrie

Gail said...

I understood both you and your mother. Parents do make mistakes. Especially with their first child. They were once young like you trying to raise a child. I'm glad you can talk to her. Great blog.

.beee. said...

I think you're so brave for sharing your story! Thanks for that =)

Shania said...

bobbyd1536,Gail,bee, thank you all for taking the time to leave me a comment, I truly appreciate it.