We’ve all seen this saying, we probably have said it once or twice to a friend in need and maybe we shouted it out to a former lover. We may have read it on a page of some self-help book or heard our pastor give a sermon on holding onto the past. We may have even been on the receiving end of that statement a few times. God knows I have.
Yes, I do believe that life is too short to sweat the small stuff ….. like, wearing two different colored socks, missing your flight, being a dollar short in the drive-thru of your favorite fast food joint and I agree there is a time to just move forward and let the past just stay in the past…..
BUT, there are exceptions to this …… there are times that the only way to move forward is to deal with it head on. I believe that “some” people use this expression as an easy way out; a way for them not to have to deal with the pain that they have caused other people. They don’t want to face the hard cold fact that they have something to do with the nightmares and constant inner struggle someone has gone through for the past thirty something years. …..and by “someone” I mean me and the delusional “someone” is none other than mommy dearest.
“Life is too short to dwell on the past” she wrote today.
Maybe for you…..you’re seventy, I have a good fifty years still ahead of me… I thought.. as I ripped a twizzler out of its bag and began chomping on it, I was irritated. Leave it to her to turn a blind eye on the crap that she pulled. Years of manipulation, years of guilt trips, years of seeing her throw temper tantrums on her bed because “life isn’t fair”, years of head games…..fucked up head games. Fine, you want to be in denial, you want to sweep things under the rug and pretend nothing happened….Fine live your life that way, but I won’t. I want to be healthy, I want to rid myself of the ghosts that have haunted me for years, I want to be strong and finally be proud of myself, I want to ………………..hear you say “you fucked up” and acknowledge that you didn’t love me like a mother should….but that will never happen because you want to turn a blinds eye, pretend it never happened.
Yes, let’s pretend that you never played favorites……let’s pretend I never heard my father say “it’s our choice who we choose to love”…let’s pretend that you never ignored me while I was pregnant with my first child and thought that God was punishing YOU! ….let’s pretend that after I was there for you while you were dealing with your mothers sudden death that you didn’t become your icy self once you went back home. I remember that night when you opened up to me, how you wished your mother had loved you. You were hurt because she considered her neighbor more of a daughter than you…….I sat there night after night listening. I thought we had a mother daughter break through. You cried, you made me feel sorry for you, you yearned for her love, you told me you wished she would have been more of a mother to you. That night I expressed my feelings about us, I thought you listened…… I was wrong……so wrong. Remember when Andrea had a change of heart and wasn’t going to go into the military, and you turned on her…….who did you call?? You called me…….for the first time I got to see what it was like to be your favorite, for a week and a half I got to feel what my sister felt. We went places, did things, laughed and cooked together. “You need to talk to your sister” you asked. I did…..the day my sister decided to go through with her decision and continue on with the military was the day you changed. I was again an outsider looking in. Let’s pretend you never called me a bitch in front of your home, let’s pretend you never told a family friend that I was a failure and no amount of praying will help me, let’s pretend how when I wanted to be hugged by my mother all I got was a fake “I’m too busy” embrace, it wasn’t even an embrace. Why even bother to hug me now??
You were the reason why you weren’t invited to the wedding……………it was your hurtful words that you said to our family friend not only once, not twice but a few times about me that finally was enough for me. You can go ahead and live your life as you do and I will live mine. I will know that I HAVE stopped the cycle that you and your mother started. I will know that when my kids were growing up they knew I loved them UNCONDITIONALLY. …….they know of their mothers’ love, something I only experienced the first five years of my life.