“I should have gone for an abortion”. These are the words my mom has been telling me since I was a child. When I was a child, observing mothers caressing their child and enveloping them in a blanket of love used to make me jealous. I used to cry for hours on end in my bedroom. Everybody said my mom was mentally unstable, but the medical reports state the opposite.
My mom never spoke to me affectionately, let alone showing affection. I always wondered how motherly love felt like.
One day my aunt visited me.
“Hey honey, you’ve grown so fast”, she said and gave me a cwtch.
“I never knew I had an aunt”.
“So your mom told you nothing about me?”, she said without showing much surprise.
“She never speaks to me, Aunt Callie!”, I laughed deliberately. “By the way, where were you for so long? Couldn’t visit any sooner?”.
“I was waiting for you to grow up”.
“And why were you doing that?”.
“Because I know children are very inquisitive. And you live in darkness, you don’t know who your father is, you don’t know why your mother prefers the shadows and why she never shows interest in you. So I assumed you had more questions compared to other children of your age and the younger you are, the more difficult it is for me to explain.”
“You’ve waited and suffered for long. I don’t intend on making you wait any longer. Let me clarify things for you. Your mom wasn’t like this before. She was sensitive and loving.” I choked on the words, sensitive and loving. That woman who never even bothered to feed me when I was burning with fever, unable to open my eyes, used to be kind?
One night on my way back home from a park, I lost my way. Luckily, I soon found a police station, and the police dropped me home. At home, my mom did not even bother to ask me if I was okay.
“Look, I’m her sister. She spent half of her life with me. I knew it would be hard to believe at first. But that was how she was”.
“It’s hard to believe but I’m trying”.
She smiled empathetically at me, but I beamed at her.
“I wish I could adopt you, Rick,” she sighed.
“What’s stopping you?”. I so badly wanted to go away with Aunt Callie. Away from this awful woman I call mom.
“Your mom’s stopping me!”
Why would she do that? I think she’d be the happiest person if I went away. All my life I’ve thought she wants to get rid of me. I’m baffled.
“She doesn’t even want me to live with you guys”.
Then it strikes my mind. She wants to transform my life into an inferno. She wants me to regret living. But who gave me life, Didn’t she, herself? She conceived. She decided against abortion. It all happened with her consent. But when she knew she couldn’t love her child, why did she conceive one? Or why hadn’t she just killed me?
Anger and all these questions were bubbling inside me, but I fought back the urge to spill it out. She’s expecting me to act maturely, and I don’t want to behave like a whiny five-year-old throwing a tantrum.
“Go on”, I say. My voice sounds foreign.
“When your mom was twenty-one years old, she had two boyfriends”. Oh! So she’s been a cheater all along, I thought, but kept my mouth shut.
“One was Jacob, the other was Ross. She was head over heels in love with Ross and Jacob was her heartbroken best friend. Two girls had already ditched Jacob, and he was on the verge of losing his job too. As a responsible best friend, Genelia, your mom, helped him recover and vulnerable Jacob fell in love with her. Afraid she might break his heart and he would again start acting like a lovesick lunatic, she became his girlfriend. But she was sure about one thing. When Jacob returns to the confident man he used to me, she’d somehow coax him to breakup with her. But she didn’t want to cheat on Ross so like a good girlfriend or rather like an obedient puppy..” We both started laughing hard.
“Aunt Callie, you should not joke amidst serious conversations,” I chuckled.
“Ok, angry young man! So where were we? Ah yeah. So like a good girlfriend, she told Ross everything and promised to get out of that relationship as soon as possible.”
By then, I was struggling really hard to not ask ‘who is my father?’. But I know that by the end of the day my question will be answered, but waiting is the only thing I’m tired of doing.
“But Genelia had no idea that she was in love with the wrong person. Ross was not serious about their relationship. He was just trying to have fun. So he took advantage of the situation and started dating his best friend, Jessica.
When it came to Genelia’s notice, she was flabbergasted. She went straight and asked him why he was dating Jessica. He casually said that as long as she’s dating Jacob, he’ll date Jessica. Jacob had overheard their conversation. Later that day, Jacob found Genelia inebriated at a local bar. He drove her back home, put her to sleep and fell asleep on a couch in her house. The next day Jacob told Genelia that if he was an obstacle between them, he’d back away. But Genelia knew that Ross wasn’t the one, so she told Jacob that she wants to continue dating him and wants to break up with Ross.
Jacob and your mother dated for five years. Genelia loved Jacob and Jacob loved Genelia.” Aunt Callie abruptly stopped and sighed. I gave her some time then said, “Can you still continue or should we drop the conversation?”
“She became pregnant and soon Jacob got to know. Rick, you should have seen how happy Jacob was. We all thought the jubilation would drive him insane. He was dancing on the street!”
Aunt Callie laughed heartily, and because I didn’t want to be rude, I pretended to be amused.
“Two days later, Jacob asked Genelia to marry him, but she refused right away. When your Granny and I asked her for a reason, she said that her child’s father was Ross”.
Oh my god! What kind of labyrinth is my stupid mom’s life? She’s a cheater and cheaters are never content. That’s why she is always alone, grumpy and despicable. My brain clogs up with such thoughts and my heart clogs up with hatred for my mother.
“She said that she met Ross accidentally in a grocery store and there they exchanged mobile numbers.
Soon he started calling her frequently, and since then they had grown close. She also said that Ross was unbeknownst of the fact that she was still dating Jacob. As a result, Ross asked her to date him and she willingly became his girlfriend again. Our mom thought this was cruel and unethical, so she stopped talking to her. And after a few days, our mom died of a heart attack. When she died, she was still cross with your Genelia. Genelia was depressed and heartbroken. For three consecutive days, she wept silently in her room and turned down food. The day she came out of the bedroom, she went to meet Ross. She informed him she was pregnant with his child and instead of feeling jubilant and celebrating; he scowled. And instead of asking for her hand in marriage, he asked her to abort the child. He said he was just having fun and didn’t want to get into any commitment. That very moment she walked out of his house and bought the house you live in.
Her experiences have taken a toll on her.” She said.
That day was the only day I felt sorry for my mother.
“Callie, you may leave now”, my mother said, appearing for within the shadows. But instead of going for the door, Aunt Callie walked towards mom and said, “You’ve proved to be a terrible mother. I beg you to change. You’ll lose Rick like the way you lost mom. And by the time you regret your actions it will be too late”.
Mom stared through her. I was sure that not even a single word had affected my mom.
I just love sports, especially long jump. My long and sturdy legs were just made for it. My only dream is to grab a gold medal in the Olympics long jump competition. This is the only way I can follow my passion and create an image in my mom’s eyes. But I didn’t think I could follow my dream after the tragic incident. My friend had had an argument with his girlfriend and wanted to leak her nude pictures online. Before he could do it, I informed his girlfriend’s parents and his parents about the thing he was going to do. He was grounded and scolded. After a few days he met me and a fight broke out between us. He pushed me backwards; I stumbled on the road, a vehicle was coming my way. There was an acute pain in my wrist, then I passed out.
The next thing I remember is waking up in a hospital bed. My mom was sitting on a stool next to the bed.
“You’ve lost your palm,” She said.
I searched for my hand, and when I saw it, I was devastated. I was looking at a palmless hand.
“I know what you are thinking. You can still compete in the Olympics, or rather Paralympics.” She said.
And from that day, my mom changed drastically. She started showing interest in my life; she started addressing me as her son, and most importantly she looks at me with pride. And as I sit on the table ready for the Christmas feast; clutching my gold medal. She tells me what triggered the change in her behaviour.
“You stood up for a girl you didn’t know”. Then she says the words that I would have died to hear. “Though I didn’t prove to be an excellent mother, I’m sure I gave birth to a real and responsible man. I’m proud of you, son. Love you.