I always think about my mother on Mother’s Day.
It used to be—when I thought of her on this day and every mention of Mother’s Day—I wondered where she is.
I haven’t seen her face nor heard her voice in 23 years, half my life. But, I remember her face and her voice, as if I was 23, as if I was 7.
On some Mother’s Days, I was afraid she’d knock on my door, terrified of what might happen if she did.
I’d be able to see her through my door’s windows. I’d know it was her, even if she had her back toward its small panes of glass. I’d know the shape of her, the height of her, how she stood with her hip out. I’d even know if she meant to harm, or might harm, or didn’t intend to harm, but might harm anyway.
Would I have the courage to open my door, after asking who it is, even if I was pretty sure it was her?
If I didn’t have this courage to open my door, and I was certain she wouldn’t shoot me through it (yes, I sometimes feared she would come all this way to kill me), would she want to ask me things through my door?
Would I have the courage to answer, with my door between us?
Would she ask what I’ve been up to these last 23 years, as if nothing had happened during the first 23 years? Or would she ask to talk about what happened?
Would she ask to talk about what happened when I wasn’t ready? Or when I was in the middle of the hardest part of my life, when I shouldn’t be talking about what happened with my mother?
Or, would she tell me she loves me and ask for my forgiveness?
I wonder if she’s happy. I wonder if she’s found peace.
A big part of me wants—when my 18 years are done—to ask her if she’s happy, to ask her if she’s found peace.
A big part of me wants to ask her these things—in person.
I imagine knocking on her door, and her look of shock if she sees me through her small panes of glass (I’d be facing forward), or her look of shock, if she’s found the courage to open the door, after asking who it is.
If she hasn’t found this courage, I’d ask her these things, through her door. Maybe, she’d have the courage to answer, with the door between us.
And if she hasn’t found this courage to answer, I’d say: “I hope you’re happy. I hope you’ve found peace. I love you. And, there’s nothing to forgive.”