May 22, 2020

Dear Parent who Wasn’t There.


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Dear Parent,

I wish I had a heart-connection with you the way I do with my therapists.

I wish I loved you, but I can’t say these words. I wish more than anything for things to be different, but they aren’t. 

I wish you read to me Brown Bear, Brown Bear, played house, and made cookies with aprons. I wish you checked my homework, had rules about how much sugar I could have, and brushed my hair every morning. I wish you got mad if I didn’t brush my teeth. I wish you scooped me up and took me away from him forever. I wish all of these things and more.

I wish my vernacular were different as a child. I wish you held my hand and showed me the way. I wish you had dreams for me.

I wish you knew that I don’t hate you, but I do wish you had shown up for me. I wish you knew how much I longed for your presence.

I wish you picked me up. I wish you held me. I wish you never let go.

I wish you never struggled. I wish your story were different. I wish so much more for you than you have ever had.

I wish you knew this doesn’t have to be your story. I wish you experienced the love you deserve.

I wish you took me bra shopping, showed me how to use tampons, and made me doctor appointments. I wish you didn’t embarrass me in front of my friends and wish you were always sober and coherent. I wish you didn’t ask me to get you more Sudafed when you hit your limit. I wish you read me stories, danced with me, and encouraged me to study. 

I wish you knew that my name is not Becca, but Rebecca. I wish you knew that when I speak Portuguese, I feel in love with life, and when I dance Forró, my anxiety is gone. I wish you knew that I want to be a professor and that I show up to class every morning joyful and ready to learn. I wish you knew that the same love you show people at your work is the same love I have for my patients.

I wish you protected me, showed up, and saw me for who I am. I wish you knew that I have big dreams and that all along the way, people have been there for me. I wish you stood up for yourself and told him enough is enough.  

I wish I could come home, but what I wish for more is to be free, to be authentic, and to be loved.


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