Wednesday, October 30, 2002
Home is where...
More and more, I'm disliking living here at home with my Mom. I love my Mom as much as the next guy, but part of that love is knowing that prolonged periods of time with her aren't exactly the best for either of us. Most anybody who knows me, knows that I'm a laidback person in general... but my mother somehow insists on always pushing my buttons and irritating me. Damn, I know some women can get moody... that's understandable... but my Mom just takes too much damn liberty with her moody-ness.
I used to think I could cope with it before, but after 2 months of being back at home, I think I'm sinking to emotional all-time lows. Perhaps it's because I've recently realized how much my own mother has no idea who I am a person or as even her son. Hell, she has trouble remembering my name sometimes! How sad is that, she can't even remember my name! She isn't that old yet. The most my mother and I connect over is food... she knows that I don't like mushrooms and that I don't like gravy right ontop of my rice. That's about the full extent of her understanding of me.
How can you love somebody you don't even know or understand? I don't my mom has ever really made an effort at all to know who I am as human being. I remember growing up in those years after Dad died, I was also off on my own, left to my own devices while my mother doted over my sister... for them it was always shopping trips, splurges that brought home clothes, trinkets, and a bunny rabbit. Garrett got books. Any complaining of neglect of my part always got me rantings from her about her childhood, where the gist is "my brothers were treated like kings and I got shafted". Jeez... do you know what it's like to be guilt tripped by your own mother for something that YOU had absolutely NOTHING to do with??? Irrational to say the least...
Yeah, I'm bitter about life and my childhood right now. I wonder how much my life would be different if Dad were around. I mean, my mother provided food and roof over my head, I'm grateful that... but it takes more than material substance to be a parent. When I was at kendo practice last night and they were talking about the upcoming federation shiai (tournament) I briefly recalled some sad memories. While other kendo kids had their mothers there with water and cookies, their fathers there cheering and offering advice like Don't give up...we're behind you! - I was the kid who got dropped off and left by myself. Even when I took my first trophies, got to make a trip to the nationals in Cleveland... there was no family in the stands cheering for me. I fought by myself, for myself... and sometimes wondered as a kid, what was so wrong with me that deserved neglect. In the off times my mother was present, it more out of a lack of things to do than a wish to support me. It came as no surprise to me when I observed that she would eagerly attend almost all my sister's basketball games, cheering all the way.
I guess I was an unlikeable child. My friends could hardly even begin to relate... a single parent family in the Asian American CHRISTIAN community? Unthinkable.
Yet despite all that anguish and sadness in the past, I always tried to keep the faith and hope for a better future. I clenched my jaw and took everything that came... those long years without a father (or any approximation of such), the loneliness, even the funerals... all because, the "future" was supposed to be brighter. That the joy of tomorrow would salve the hurt of yesterday. Now here I stand... in the future.
Tomorrow came, and nothing came with it. Those around me are free to laugh, because I'm living proof that the struggle to live a life in the face of faith-rendering circumstances is filled with the emptiness of irony. I never asked to live like a king, but I'm denied even the right to live like a regular person. I gave up my best for something other than myself and I have nothing to show for it... a putrid pile of regurgitated lies, platitudes, pseudo-virtues fed to me by the world, babbling on about that there is something noble about suffering and sacrifice.
There is no nobility. If there is a victory, its depths are shallow as the world in which it is won.
I'm hungry. Time to make myself lunch and wish for a goddamn drink.
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