Keith Boykin posted a picture of him and his mother on his site, and was talking about their relationship. That just got me thinking about my mother. We definitely did not have the best of relationships when I was growing up, but it’s a lot better now. My mother battled addiction when I was younger, but she never got so strung out that we didn't have what we needed, we never went hungry. She always did the best she could do, and as I get older I recognize her more for all she's done and continues to do. All of my siblings know that too, we know that no matter what our mom will always be there for us. I called her on Sunday to wish her a happy father's day, because she's truly been mother and father my whole life. When I was talking to her today she said that all of my siblings had called her on Saturday to ask her for money. Now while it may appear that we're all being spoiled, I think it signals something more. My brother is 34 years old and he called too because we know that our mother would never deny us anything we needed. Now if we call her with some foolishness she will say no in a hurry.
As I struggled with my sexuality and the inevitable question about coming out to my mom came up, I was afraid, but never too afraid. Because, I knew that no matter what my mom would always love me. Me and my mother are a lot alike we have the same personality, which is why we butt heads so much. However, our similar personality is also what helps me to understand her. My mother is the one who planted the seed of Black studies in me, years ago. My mom was kicked out of her high school because she refused to be silent about the racism in her school. She never raised us with the standard little girls do this and that; she let us define our own gender identity, which I'm truly appreciative of. She's always been committed to education and got her Bachelor's degree a week before I got mine. Now she's pursuing her master’s degree and really pushing forward with her life.
As a lot of my friends and family are having children I think about the relationship between mother and child a lot. Even though my mother didn't say the words I love you often, I knew it. She showed it in walking to the hospital with my brother in her hands when he was younger and having an asthma attack. When she quit taking night classes because we wanted her home more, in going to rehab when she knew she couldn't manage her addiction again. My mom showed me and my siblings love, and because of that her imperfections mean nothing. To me my mom is the perfect mom, and I'm truly thankful for her.
Wednesday, June 20, 2007
I love my mommy
This is my favorite picture of the two of us
“I remember how being young and black and gay and lonely felt. A lot of it was fine, feeling I had the truth and the light and the key, but a lot of it was purely hell.” ~Audre Lorde