Today, I was straightening up dad’s room before his arrival, collecting those things that belonged to Mami for safekeeping. He has remarried and though his wife didn’t come with him, she will be taking the trip soon and let’s just say after the last visit, I realized my mistake in leaving mementos for my dad.
For some weird reason, the new chick decided to take everything that was on the bookcase in his room and put it in drawers. Well, there I found an organizational journal I gave to mom years ago (or did my sister give it to her?). In any case, I was about to take it when I thought: I’m not going to use this. As I went to put it back, I decided to take the band from around it and open it. I keep hoping to find a last letter penned in my mother’s hand. Some deeply profound note telling me…stuff. I want to hear from her. Especially as we near the anniversary of her death.
But I didn’t find a letter. I just found this:
This wasn’t a coincidence, folks. This picture has given me life! It. Is. EVERYTHANG! For so many reasons. First of all, I adore the resemblance. But more than that, look at that damn attitude?! Shit! You would not be messing with, her would you? She is serving up a cold and sultry side eye that I have worked for years to perfect. I feel like that attitude, that je ne sais quoi is now deeply sown into my soul.
Mami was a go-getter. No one could stop her from doing what she thought she had to do. She was a hustla. Smart, beautiful. The complete package.
I’m having to make a lot of tough choices this year. The biggest one, though? The clarity and understanding that I have to take care of me. That I have to be responsible for my family of 2. Not waiting around for people to make up their minds as to what they want to do, who they want to be with, whether or not they will be living abroad or within the confines of my mother’s house (with a new woman?).
I’m tired of being mother hen. Tired of feeling like I’m being drawn away from what I am meant to do so I can help someone that might need fixin’. I can’t fix people. So, I’m not about to keep on trying.
This past week, Pastor Joel said we should love people where they are today. That’s what I’m doing. Not committing to the possibilities or the potential. Loving them and continuing on down my path so I can love some mo’!
This picture today is worth more than 1,000 words. Because it brought me the freedom from my thoughts and the release of a responsibility I didn’t realize was so heavy, so consuming. This picture freed my soul with an ah-ha moment I don’t think I would’ve gotten if I’d found the letter my mother never wrote.
Because I’m worthy of being happy. Worthy of not settling. Worthy of not feeling responsible for the entire planet.
I’m worth it. Worth the work, the sacrifice. And if you look at that picture, you’ll see, what’s what she’s saying too.
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