28 years

Tomorrow will be 28 years. 336 months. 10,220 days. Actually its a little longer than that, if you count the last 5 days you were here, you were in a coma and unresponsive. But we will go with the actual date. June 30, 1985. I hope your last days were not painful – but I fear they were. No kidney function, no liver function, stomach on mass of bleeding ulcers – yep, pain. The compassionate woman I have become would feel sorry for you. The daughter who watched your descent into the depths of hell feels nothing. You left me. You left me November 1, 1979 – the day my dad died. From that day on, through the 17 suicide attempts, through the drug use, through the alcohol – your common thread was “I just want to be with him”. Forget the fact you had 2 daughters and a son who needed you – who would have liked you around. Forget the fact that your 2 grandsons and your granddaughter would have loved to have known you. Forget the fact that you now have a great grandson. You got what you wanted. It took you 4 and a half years, but you got it. You left behind smoke and ashes and destruction. It took me years to forgive you. Maybe I haven’t. I’ll never forget – because I don’t want to ever repeat that pain for my children. I never want my children to feel left, unwanted, or unimportant, like I did.

28 years. Longer than I had you with me in my life. You gave birth to me. For my first 15 years and 11 months you loved me, I think. For the next 4 years and 7 months – I don’t think you cared about a damn thing. Thats a shame. So now, 28 years later, I can say goodbye, Mama. The pain you inflicted on me, the guilt you laid on my shoulders is gone now. I will remember the first 15 years and 11 months fondly, and with smiles. I will remember the last 4 years and 6 months as the ones that forged me, that made me strong enough to last through the storms life threw at me – because when your own Mama doesn’t need you, or want you anymore – you can handle anything else that comes your way.

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