My mother died today. To me. She died to me.
The rest of the world can still see her, hear her, touch her.
Our relationship has been terminal since it started 46 years ago. It’s been dying since it was given life. A relationship grounded in resentment, built on conditions that could never be met and reinforced by attachments to the idea of a mother-daughter relationship that COULD have been. That could never have been.
Letting go and wishing her peace is the only way forward. Letting go of wishing things could be anything other than what they are. This is what is. I am dropping the hot coal from my hand, as it only serves to burn deeply each time.
Years of estrangement, woven loosely with intermittent attempts to be in one another’s lives created a predictable pattern of disappointment and pain. Each time the scab would heal a little harder. Each time, I could sense the conditions starting to arise. Each time, I said it would be the last time. Until this time.
While the ending was not kind to either of us, the letting go is indeed an act of kindness. Forcing a toxic relationship that only serves to cause reciprocal pain is not wise. There is freedom and compassion in letting go.
Moving forward, I can cultivate compassion in my heart for a person whose own inner pain would prevent her from loving unconditionally. I can mourn the death of a person, who didn’t actually exist for me in this life. I can be grateful for the resilience, and self-reflection that this teacher has afforded me. I can choose to love abundantly, those that can receive my love, purely, unconditionally. I can choose peace each day for my mind and my heart.
I can. I will. I am.
And I wish for her that she may find a similar peace.