From the Nook,
|Art by Saundra Lane Galloway|
I know it's close to impossible for you to read this, and that gave me more liberty. If that's a good thing we'll find out. You know me. All your life, you've been too busy taking care of everyone; I mean your siblings and their offsprings, and their electricity bills and tuition fees. I grew up in a house that never ran out of visitors, some stay for a few hours to eat with us, some a few months searching for jobs in the city, or throughout the years to take care of me and Michael (okay, my brother) My auntie became my yaya, and I'm forever thankful that I didn't have to grow up switching nannies. It breaks a kid's heart you know.
Because I chose to rebel at age 8, I stayed behind our old house to attend my school of choice. I can vividly recall how you tried to convince me that the foreign Academy is actually a better and happier place, with air conditioned classrooms and nice yellow painted school buses. Little did you know that I was happiest while walking to school. And because I was adamant, I purposely flunked my entrance exam, stayed behind, and therefore didn't grow up by your side. It proved to be my first life changing decision.
Being away from my mother made me a strong, independent, decisive girl. I chose where I want to live, what course to take, what I can and can
I didn't like the idea that you gave TOO much of what you/we have, that we ended up having less. I didn't like sharing my room, my clothes and my Christmas shopping money. But now I realized it's not losing material things I hated the most, but rather, I detest that you shared yourself too much, lost yourself in the process, and then, I lost you - my mother. How many times should a child lose her parents?
Now, having experienced a lot more in life (joy, heartbreaks, but definitely not enough of either), I found myself more composed and less dramatic. I started seeing things from your point of view; I realized what a b*tch I can be when I'm mad, I felt sorry I was always biased towards dad, and it scared me how your only daughter perfected hiding affection for so long she almost forgot how it felt to be someone's daughter. You must have been scared, too.
It was a long ordeal, but I slowly stopped being angry. And so some months ago, I mustered the courage to face the mirror and talkto the obviously hurt girl.
It's not too late to be someone's daughter again, I told her. And I'm quite sure she smiled back.