If you had told me a few years ago

That in so many ways I was like my mother

I would have laughed in your face,

Adding in a bit of my breathless and squeaky voice

And the flare of my multiple laughs

Just to emphasize the mere absurdity of that thought.

I would have told you that there was no way

Our paths would align

Because of those few moments she didn’t have my back

And said the words that wounded my heart

Even though a few days later she could not remember saying that

She unintentionally drew us apart

And I was more than eager to grow apart.

Our relationship died just like that:

An unobtrusive death

There was nothing to revive

No broken pieces to glue together or join again as one.

 

If you had told me so many years ago

That I would follow the same path as my mother

I would have protested so much,

And maybe you would have seen the glint of anger in my eyes.

But as I see so much of her in the one I call “I”

Strongly, I wish I could go back in time

To understand why in my eyes she was always so compromised,

Why her strength never stood out in my eyes,

 

Or her sacrifices for my siblings and me,

Why my vivid memories of her are from when she hurt me so much

And not when she gave up her life for mine.

Sometimes I am filled with guilt inside

For all the times she was the villain and I held her to that,

Before I could get past the flaws that are also part of her.

 

She is a woman I truly admire,

Her strength. Her hopefulness. Her success. Her will to fight.

When I can find no reason to live my life

I resolve to live for her

Because I am always convinced that things will turn out fine.

 

If you tell me I am like my mother

I will smile with delight

Because I will imagine that I bear my strengths and weaknesses with pride

Just like her,

My flaws and vulnerabilities as part and parcel of one to love and be loved.

I am my mother’s daughter,

A walking skeleton of contradictions

That I am growing to love.