What I Cannot Have

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Memoir  |  House: Booksie Classic
A short, hasty confession of what my mother has done to me.

Submitted: May 17, 2008

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Submitted: May 17, 2008



Every mother wants her little girl to be just like her. I never understood that, but I did it anyway. I became like her. Of course, in the little ways, I betrayed her; lied to her, snuck out on her, yelled at her. But in the big picture? I became just like her. Just. Like. Her.

I smile. I keep my chin up, and I never look down when I am walking. I laugh when everyone else isn't, when I'm supposed to frown and stare straight ahead like them. I force myself to look at the people I have hurt, to talk to the people who have hurt me. I take risks and make guesses, and it makes people laugh because they never would've done that. They know how it would've turned out. That means I'm always one step behind, but always striving to catch up. I must keep up appearances at all times and costs, I must make people think I am happy, that I am alive and vibrant and exactly what she, I, want to be. I must never cry, must never let go of the appearance. Keep it up, let myself become it.

So, I guess you could say I am strong because I go on though I am hurting, I keep up that act. But, see, you can't, because I don't even have that. In those small hours of the night where everyone else is supposed to be sleeping, I am awake. Thinking. Drowning in thought. And, eventually, for just a few minutes, tears.

That's right. I let go for those few minutes. I break down, and I let the world in, the silence of my room. I let it swim inside me, and I let go.

So, you see, I am not like her. I am not strong. I let myself go. I cannot call myself strong. The act, the endurance, the hanging on, is not worth it because of those few minutes. I will never be able to call myself strong.

I cannot even have that.

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