Monday, May 30, 2011

She Means Grace

You know that I loved you? From the moment I first saw you, I loved you, a beautiful stranger, my sister. Even the very sound of your name, sparks my heart to skip a beat. Even when it's not you, but someone else with that same name. Yes my heart flutters at the very sound of your name, at the very thought of you, sister. Ah, but I, a mere child, and so naive, could not understand where you'd been, the things that happened to you, and the hatred and rage which festered in your heart.

I grew up watching our mother grieve for you, her lost little girl. And, so, I could not imagine how you couldn't know that she loved you. I thought that love, mine, could make us sisters, real sisters, such as I never, ever had, but always dreamed about. How could I know that, some of that hatred and rage, you'd saved for me? How could I know, in my child-like way, that you hated me simply because I had what you did not ~ our mother? How could an awkward little girl like me envision myself a symbol of your painful, love starved childhood?  I want to beg forgiveness for my childish naivety. I want to beg forgiveness for all the things your child-self suffered, in the absence of a mother. I want to beg forgiveness for every moment in your life that starved you from the most basic, life-sustaining element ~ love. But how should you forgive me, for the sins of others, others who have long left this earthly life?

The Little Sistersphoto © 2007 Joy Coffman | more info (via: Wylio)

I want to understand this thing, this force, that both draws us toward and repels us away from each other. It defies logic. Love defies logic. And the more I loved, the stronger my anger became. Anger at your rejection of me. Anger at learning that love cannot and will not repair everything that has broken. You entered adulthood with a bruised and broken spirit, believing that blame would bring you healing. And when you finally found your scapegoats, did the healing begin? Only you can answer that question. Just as only you can reconcile the fact that you've spent so much time angry for the pain and deprivation of your childhood, time that you could have spent reveling in that one thing you have so longed for ~ a mother.

I love you still. I suppose I never stopped, though I believed for a long time in the mutual exclusivity of anger and love. I suppose I had yet to learn that anger doesn't exist without love. Now I know. My heart has always had room enough for ambivalence. And so, I love you. Still. Even if only from afar.

2 comments:

chickory said...

its amazing how much joy is sacrificed to the present in order to stoke the fire of old pain. sad to think you could have each other but dont. I treasure my sisters and their friendship. I wish for you this, some day, sooner I hope and not later. xoxoxox

Jen said...

This is heartbreaking and still beautiful. I really love this:

"I suppose I never stopped, though I believed for a long time in the mutual exclusivity of anger and love. I suppose I had yet to learn that anger doesn't exist without love. Now I know."

So true. Thanks for sharing this wonderful post... and thank you for reading and commenting at my blog! I appreciate it a lot. :)

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