Perfectly Imperfect:

Your Mother:

At first, you dont see it; that first crinkle around the eyes of your mother. You dismiss it and blame it on stress, hard work and you find all sorts of reasons why those lines you dont call wrinkles, are more noticeable than the year before. It's the strangest human phenomenon; we understand and can see ourselves get older, but never our mother. She is strong, she is invincible, she is superhuman. She has proven that by rearing children, facing poverty, working hard for minimum wage, helped with homework, nursed you back to health and dried countless tears that have fallen from your eyes.
She was the loudmouth at your sports event, the "loudhailer" at your first concert who cheered for the two words you spoke or sang as if you were the star of the show. She fed you with the last bit of food, then lied and said she was not hungry.

You grew, developed your own viewpoints. The world changed and technology was something you understood and it was funny when she attempted to use the keyboard and mouse. Your world became filled with love if you were lucky enough to fall in love, you had your own home and your children, your work, your activities that kept you busy, but whenever you needed advice, she was the "go-to" person. You needed a babysitter, your mother was there to love and look after your children. Often you didn't have to ask because you figure, "she can't refuse because they belong to her."

Life carried on with you busy with yours and thinking that time has not aged her in any way. It's like self-preservation lies you tell yourself because you don't want to look too close to the evidence that the tiny crinkles by her eyes have now become deeper grooves around her mouth and jawline; that she looks older.

Perhaps it is a way for you to deny her mortality and her limited time with you; a type of "burying your head in the sand," behaviour.

Then one ordinary day, you stop and really take a hard look at her and suddenly you see that while you were growing, maturing, she was ageing. Once you notice the wrinkles, you also see that her movements have become slower. She is no longer as fit as she used to be when you were a child.

Time stops for you and the thought that every day is a step closer to you losing her, hits you like a ton of bricks. You become fearful, anxious and sad! Memories play games like ping-pong in your mind and you think and re-think every action and interaction.

Did you do enough to show her you loved her? Did you say it enough? Did she manage to fulfil the dreams she had for herself or set them aside so you could realize yours? And finally, what could you do in this time you have left to show your appreciation for all she has done?
It's not easy because you haven't been asked to repay her, but you want to show her that you care, that you have and always will.

So you set about with little changes, such as buying her favourite chocolate then onto bigger things like lunch dates. You try to squeeze a lifetime of her loving you into a time much shorter. It feels as if you are making up for a lost time, but deep down you know that's not possible.

Attempting to do that is like putting a giant-sized balloon filled with helium in a box designed for a piece of jewellery. You know that is impossible and you're wasting time attempting that.

The reality is that you can not make up for a lost time, but what you can do is make the remaining time precious.

What you can do is take the deflated balloon, and not use helium to inflate it. Instead, use every breath you have (if breath can be converted to action) and show her how much she means to you while you still have time. Making her the cup of tea equates to one breath, listening to her retell a story in her life is another. Place every special thing you do with her from the time you get that empty balloon, like breaths in there to make new memories.

Memories that will last you a lifetime. Memories that are new to both of you. Let the new memories be the breath you use to slowly and exquisitely fill the "balloon." Not to make a perfect shape as a helium-filled one, but one you design over time with no rush but moments that make it uniquely yours.

She was, after all, not a perfect mother but one who loved you perfectly in her imperfection.

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Thesna Aston

Thesna Aston

CRT Practitioner, (life requires brave people), Writer @ The Fair Digest, Human Rights Activist, Motivating you (There are enough mean people)Member SahariTHJ