I was 16 when my parents divorced. Our life was never “perfect”, I had two alcoholics for parents, and I chose to be every bit of willful, and horrible and defiant, because I wanted to to do something so horrible and awful to myself, that they would have to pull themselves out of the gutter to save me. Instead, I chose to walk down a path that changed the outcome of my life forever.
How two drunks who hated each other with every fiber of their being managed to hold our family together, I will never understand. When my mom finally left my dad, it destroyed my life. My school wasn’t paid for any more, so I had to go to a public school my senior year, which meant I couldn’t play varsity soccer and I would lose the scholarship I was so close to having. I got car so I could chauffeur my sister and brother to school. When I started to come home from school and my mom was passed out and we had no food, I finally had to get a job to support us. I started down a long path of drinking and heavy partying and drugs. I was raped and got pregnant. I dropped out of school and left home. Even then, neither of them would save me.
After I gave my daughter up for adoption, I moved to San Antonio. I got a ride from a friend, transferred from a job I had waiting tables and found a garage apartment to rent for 75$ a month. I worked hard, I got promoted into management, met my husband, got married all without ever speaking to either one of my parents again.
My mom called me, out of the blue, and said she’d like to take my husband and I out to dinner. She met us, and drank all night. She shook with each drink, her eyes were yellow with jaundice. She reached out to me at the end of the night, she hugged me and told me she was sorry for everything and that she was proud of me. I forgave her that day.
She was killed a week later. Upon her death, I sought out my father, and forgave him. Years later, I stood in court room and forgave the man that killed my mother. I continue to forgive people with out them asking It heals me. I shouldn’t have waited so long to forgive my mother. I spent a better part of my life trying to work through anger and prove something to myself, when the simple answer would have been to just forgive. I know I am going to ask for forgiveness, and I hope it is paid forward to me. Being able to forgive saved me.
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