I cannot seem to find within myself the connecting bridge between intention and the spoken word. In prose, I am gifted; able to not tell, not show, but invite you to feel what I feel, and know what I know. It is only with a platform upon which I am able to dump out my thoughts and sift through them, then find a way to organize them into meaning for you– only then can I connect with you. Odd, isn’t it, that our connection requires the presence of disconnection?
I used to believe that there would be a day I would grow into my thoughts. My mind would no longer usurp my ability to carry out conversation, but would in fact enable me to understand others, and make sense of things baffling me for so long. As I have grown, though, my mind has grown as quickly. My desire to acclimate took a backseat to the desire to create, discover, and journey beyond– further, always further than what I could make sense of if I stood still for a time. I found that standing still was more baffling than anything else; the reality of myself so far removed from what could be called normalcy. So I stopped standing still; now moving fast enough that no one could say for sure what my definitive shape is.
But you, the one who brought me into existence and told me to reach for the stars and believe in myself… you are the most disappointing of all. You are the most disappointed of all in your realization of my different-ness.
“Aberrant: adj. not normal; varying from the usual.”
For a long time, being an ignorant child shielded me. Then, I utilized everything I could to shield myself from the world, trying to blend in and be like everyone else. It wasn’t until I almost completely self-destructed that I stopped trying to cover what I came to understand as beautiful; the same time you stopped meeting my eyes. Once I realized you didn’t know me as the individual I was, I fought to destroy the image you had created as a stand-in. I broke my skin, my bones, my heart, and for a time, my spirit, until I gave up that fight. You can keep your stand-in; one day I will become immune to your neglectful silence.
One last time I will say to you, Mom, that I wish you wanted to know me as I am. You would be proud of the woman I have become, the child I have nurtured back to life and maintained, and the tranquil balance I finally found between the two. You might be awed at the beautiful, unaffected character added by the flaws I no longer try to hide. The organic impression supplied by the natural, unrefined texture in my words and expressions would be foreign to you; perhaps it would take you longer to appreciate. Most of all, there is a galvanized strength within my skin, my bones, my heart, my spirit, and especially, my soul– after healing over the wounds earned in fighting for my place in your eyes. A strength you cannot comprehend, because you have yet to fight that battle for yourself.
I wish I could make you understand the pain it causes me to see you dismiss yourself– greater pain than was caused in your dismissal of me– but you cannot see me. You cannot hear me. You refuse to believe that the one standing in front of you is an illusion you have created to suit your desires, in case I ended up disappointing you. I wish i could tell you not to be afraid, because I haven’t shaped into a disappointment. I wish I could tell you a lot of things, because you are my mother, and all I have ever wanted is for you to see me as I am, know me without restraint, love me without condition, hear me without judgement, touch me without hesitation, and feel me without assumption.
But you cannot seem to shake your fear, and I cannot seem to find the words that, strung together, will deliver a blow impressive enough to free you from your own mother’s grasp. Generational damage I did not deserve, but was lucky enough to escape by my own devices– and that is how I know that you are wrong: I am not innately wrong, I will not fail by seeking to discover rather than following a paved trail, and your stand-in will never replace the daughter I could have been, had you but let me in.
These are the things I mean to say, but have no opportunity– you see, I am holding out for eye contact, face-to-face interaction, and my own seat to open up once more.