My Mother’s Daughter

Hilaire - Wichita, Kansas
Entered on March 2, 2008
Age Group: Under 18
Themes: family

I can hardly imagine how I would turn out without my mother, the only consistent person in my life. Even though I have a dad, my mother, in many ways, is my only parent. However, it took me the majority of my life to realize this. In fact, I did not begin to understand until a few years ago.

My parents divorced before I can even remember, leaving me in a shared custody that they hardly shared. Not because my mom refused to share me, but because my dad rarely made the time for me. One night my mom left town, leaving my dad to take care of me. However, when I woke him up shaking because I had thrown up, he simply said, “Okay” and went back to sleep. This left me extremely dumbfounded, as I told myself “that’s not what mommy would do.” So, I called my mother, waking her up in the middle of the night. Even though she was miles away, her voice soothed me. Not only that, but she changed her plans: instead of staying the rest of the night away, she came home to take care of me, discharging my dad of his burden. At that moment I realized my dad had never played the role of my father, leaving my mother as my only parent.

This experience frustrated me: I felt not only angry towards my dad, but towards myself. I recalled a visit with my child psychiatrist, when I said that my father seemed more important than my mother since I missed him. Even though I am aware of the fact that I was young and superficial, I still cannot seem to forgive myself for believing that. I know now that if my dad ended up the one responsible for me instead of my mom, I would resemble my older brother: a drop out with no future, and an unprepared parent in jail.

My dad’s only interest involves taking care of himself. My mother’s interest involves providing me with everything I need to succeed. She pushes me to try my hardest in school, while my dad could care less. She answers my questions with her honest opinions, even when I do not want to hear it. My dad just fills my head with excuses, and answers with “I don’t know.” How can a grown man not know his own opinions, his own beliefs?

My mother has faults of her own, but I am less worried about inheriting those, yet I am terrified of one day resembling any part of my dad. Thanks to my mother, I know exactly who I am. I am confident enough to stand for what I believe in and to form my own opinions, even when that means I am standing alone. I completely owe all my success in life to my mom. I believe I am my mother’s daughter, the one belief that I will never feel ashamed of.