Monday, July 11, 2022

The fireworks that I hope my mother would see

I haven’t talked to my mom for over 13 years. And to be honest, I am terrified at the idea of it. Talking to my mom. 

Luckily talking to therapists is much easier in comparison - yes, I am aware and grateful of my privileges, and I don't take it for granted, that is why I seek help. And through those constructive conversations, I have realized the importance of continuing taking care of my connection with my mom, as hard and impossible as it feels. After all, it is also to connect with the part of myself that is full of tenderness, regret, sorrow and hope. Mothers have that effect on our hearts, right?

Last year this time I recorded a sound portrait of my mom: basically Q came up with a list of questions about her, and one evening after work, Q asked me to respond to them from my perspectives and memory, a bit of Q&A if you will. For example, one of the questions was "tell me about your favorite memory of you mom". Long story short, we recorded my responses to the questions, and that became my sound portrait of my mother through my eyes and expressed with my voice. Afterwards I shared a link of the Sound Portrait recording with my mom via email, to which she actually acknowledged to my surprise. A simple "thank you" was enough to bring me to tears, even now.

Anyway, the sound portrait was probably the first meaningful connection that I have sent to her in the past 13 years. It is such a frail sign of affection from a comfortable and safe distance - probably for both parties. And before you ask, no, I don’t have the means nor courage to face my mother. The reasons are not relevant at this point. All you need to know is that I feel that we, my mother and I, are on isolated islands separated by far waters, connected with faint heartbeats of waves. I honestly don’t know if we are drifting apart or closer. Only time will tell. 

In the meantime, I will continue sending out occasional fireworks from my side, whenever I find enough strength, hoping my mom will see them. And maybe the best way is to just continue sending sound portraits? I don't have any other better ideas. Do you?

So let me turn the table around. Those of you who have mothers or have had mothers. Tell me. 

  • What would you like to know about your mother? Or wish you had known?

  • What would you like to tell your mom? Or wish you had told your mom?

I hope to get more inspiration from your brilliance, and continue sending fireworks to my mom. After all, I may not be able to close the gaps between us, but maybe it will add some passing colors to just heavy darkness, and who knows, maybe my mom will also get a glimpse of the fireworks and for those brief moments, we can feel each other’s warm existence.

P.S. And why haven't you shared your own responses to these questions with your moms? Do that.

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