A lot of people assume that one’s daughter is a lot like their mother, and a lot of times that is true, in some aspects. I can tell you that my wisdom and common sense came from my mom. My sense of humor, my laugh, my eyes, and my strength also came from my mom. My mom is the reason I have chosen the career path I have chosen. So, I have a lot of traits in resemblance of my mom, the only trait I lack is her addiction.
Growing up I imagined my life to be perfect, as I guess all children usually do.But as the years went on, I slowly began to realize that my life was far from perfect. At eight years old, my parents split up and I was forced to move to the DFW Metropolis to live with my grandparents. Living there I began to realize that my mother wasn’t who I thought she was. She was hardly ever home, her and my grandmother were fighting continuously when I had always known of them to be the best of friends. The fighting escalated more and more, year after year until finally my mom had enough and we left.I was in fifth grade at the time attending a middle school in the area and my mom and I had left my comfort zone to move in with her friend from work, which was probably the worst decision ever made.
While living there I found out that my mom was an alcoholic. Her absence started to occur more often. I would spend my nights lying wide awake in bed waiting for her to get home from where ever she spent her nights; I would call her over and over again until she answered the phone and told me she was on her way back home. I had discovered my mom was far from perfect and so was my life.After a disagreement occurred between my mom and her friend, we were on the move once again. This time we actually got our own place, a one bedroom apartment further away from my grandparents. I was forced to change schools, my first year in middle school.
The apartments we lived in were located right behind the school, which was a huge convenience to my mom considering she no longer had to wake up early in the morning to take me to school, this way I could just walk. Living alone with my mother was a fearful life for such a young kid.I never knew what was going to happen. There was always people over late at night, my mom and her friends would lock themselves in her room for hours and not even bother to let me come in with the sound of a knock. I was invisible to her. I would wake up in the mornings with her past out on the couch, surrounded my empty beer and liquor bottles, the house reeked of a skunk odor, and there were pipes on the end tables of the couch. I spent my mornings cleaning up after my mother in fear of someone finding out what I was living with and taking me away.
Little did I know, no matter what I did, sooner or later I would be taken away. One night in November, 2003 my mom had taken me over to her friend’s house for dinner. While upstairs watching television, I heard my mom call up to me telling me that we’re leaving. As I walked down stairs I saw that my mom was crying when she walked out the door, whenever I followed her outside she was on the ground convulsing in to an epileptic seizure. The cops and ambulance were called and they had found prescription pills in her purse that were not made out to her and accused her of taking them.After my mom went to the hospital my aunt came and got me and I spent the night with her. The next morning after I woke up, my grandparents were over at my aunt’s house.
Everyone, excluding my mom was sitting around the kitchen table talking. As I entered the room they all got quiet and my grandma had asked me to sit down. My grandmother then asked me how I would like to come back and live with them. I was confused. She had not mentioned my mother coming back just me. So, I asked. “What about my mom? ” She answered me.
“Your mother can no longer take care of you.She is sick and needs to get help. ” For some strange reason at twelve years old, I understood exactly what she was talking about. I accepted the offer and by that night, I was back at my grandparent’s house. Living with my grandparents made me feel more at ease, I was put back in to my original schools with my original friends and I still got to see my mother here and there. Seeing here every once and a while made me believe she was better. She was happy when I saw her, she wasn’t so upset, she looked beautiful all the time, and she looked like my mother.
But all of that was a show. By the time I was in the eighth grade, my mother had slowly became a stranger in my life and when I found out she was arrested and charged a year and a half in prison due to drug charges, my mother was no one in my life. I got letters pretty frequently from her, asking how school was, telling me how sorry she was to have put me through what she did, explaining to me her passion for God that she had picked up on while being locked away, but no matter how many letters she wrote to me, I could never find it in me to respond.By the time I received her tenth letter or so, I was tired of getting them. I finally wrote her. I wrote her a one paged, short and sweet letter, explaining to her that I was fine and so was everyone else, I told her school was good, and I answered all of her questions she had written me in her previous letters. Then, I went on to say that I no longer wanted any contact with her until she grew up and realized how to be a mom.
That was the first and only time I spoke to my mom while being in jail.After a year and a half went by and my mom got out, I was already a freshman in high school and living my life with no worries. I did see her on the day she was released, I gave her a hug and a kiss and told her that I loved her and always would but my mind had still not changed. That was the day she informed me that I had my mothers attitude. “Like mother, like daughter” she said and I cringed at the though of being like her. My mom had decided on her own, without a judge or a probation officer forcing her to do so, to move in to a sober living home.Of course I was proud of her and happy for her, but I was not getting too excited due to the face that I was not convinced she was sober.
It wasn’t until her one year sobriety celebration that I realized this was the real deal this time. My grandparents were slowly, but surely forgiving my mother for what she had done, and so was I. A year went by and my mother stayed sober, two years went by and my mother was still sober, a few months before her third year of sobriety my mom had asked if I would do her the honors by giving her, her third year sobriety chip.I was stunned at the thought, horrified to say the least. I had no idea what I was going to say, but I accepted and I am more than happy today that I did so. I wrote a little speech for that night, and when I stepped up on to the platform and stood in front of the microphone, looking out at all the addicts, seeing my mom looking up at me, I then realized that I finally had my mother back. I took a deep breath and I started to speak and I broke down in to sobbing tears.
I finally got control of myself and started to speak and simply spoke out two sentences, “Three ears ago today, I lost my mother to drugs and alcohol.But I am happy to say that not only do I have my mom back, I have my best friend back. ” I would proudly say I am just like my mother today. I would go on to explain that I share the same compassion, strength, courage and wisdom as my mother does. I do not cringe at the comment of “like mother, like daughter”, I accept it and cherish it because I now idol my mom. I had a rough childhood, and even a rough beginning into adulthood, but I can honestly say that I would not change a thing that has happened to me.
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