i wonder if she still hurts?

anonymous woman with bouquet of fresh roses
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It happened when she was so young.

The thing that’s here and now for me.

She went through that at just eight.

Can the pain still last so many years?

Or will it peter out to death?

Surely she can’t have lived through this

For thirty years or more?

That pain would kill in suck high doses,

For so long, so much life to lose.

When I was eight I was a swimmer and there was a girl in my squad who I still remember. Her mum left one day and didn’t come back. She chose another man over her two daughters and she actually left them. They had their dad who is a brilliant guy, but the fact remains; she left them.

I often think of her and since my own mum has bailed on me I think about her a lot more. You don’t understand people’s pain as a child so I didn’t really appreciate what she went through. Now that I’ve been rejected a few times, I think I have a glimpse into that pain.

But what must that have felt like as a child? And does she still feel that pain? I don’t know how many more days or weeks or months I can handle this level of discomfort and I’m a grown woman. Has she lived with this feeling all these years? If she has, then she’s a stronger woman than me.

I’m writing about this because Mother’s Day is almost upon us and that pain just seems to intensify that Sunday. It hurts so much to know that my mum isn’t dead. She just chooses to be apart from me. There are others out there and I feel your pain with all my heart.

Much Love

Rachel xx

picking at old wounds

toasted breads
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I feel like I’m picking at old wounds at the moment. And I really don’t know how safe it is to do. If we pick at physical wounds we can be left with ugly scars, so can the same be said of our psychological wounds?

I’m writing a lot about my past and that is bringing up lots of old memories, some of which are quite upsetting. A lot of it is weird little memories that shouldnt really still be there in my mind, but somehow they’ve stuck.

One thing I wrote about recently was the ‘toast incident’. It still makes me feel uncomfortable when i think about this even though it was from before I had even started school.

I was desperate for breakfast one day and my mum was busy. I’d asked and she just carried on poring over whatever she was doing. So I decided to make my own.

I pulled out a chair so that I could reach the countertop and then began to slide the toaster out of the cupboard. As I dragged it along the shelf, my fingers slipped and the toaster clattered to the ground. The sound was deafening and the front panel had dislodged itself and skidded along the line floor.

My mum came hurrying out to investigate and I was yelled at and sent up to my room without the breakfast I’d set out to make for myself.

When dad got home from work he dutifully fixed the toaster and mum filled him in on her version of events. I had snuck down to the bottom of the stairs and I listened carefully while tucking myself out of sight.

My mum told my dad that I had deliberately broken the toaster and that she was really angry with me. There was no mention of the fact that I had asked and was then just trying to look after myself.

It was my first realisation that nobody has your back. I could never really trust my mother so it doesn’t surprise me that I struggle to trust other people.

I believe that we are all a little bit like computers and we’re programmed in our early years. Unfortunately, nearly all of us have bad experiences that set horrible thoughts in our minds.

The ‘toast incident’ probably sounds so ridiculous to most people but I seem to have hung onto it into adulthood and it’s really shaped the way I think about myself and others.

I hope that you are able to see that you are always ok and the things in the past will always shape you but they dont have to be the be all and end all.

Much Love

Rachel xx

my mother chose her sister over me and it really hurt

I don’t think that there’s any pain

That shoots through bodies with such searing pain

As the white rejection of a mother

Who’s chosen someone other

Branding skin with broken lines,

Ugly to the eyes.

They mark you out within a crowd

As one who’s never good enough.

My parents split up last year and my mum pushed me away too. No matter what I did to try and fix the situation, it just seemed to get worse and worse. Now she just listens to her sister and I can’t even have a dialogue with her without it having to go through my aunt.

I’m writing this to get it out in the air just how much that hurts. I think that the rejection of a mother must be the hardest pain to bear. To know that somebody who gave birth to you and raised you can’t stand to talk to you is so painful.

I guess I’ve always known that she doesn’t like me much and I think that it has led to a lot of the problems I’ve had in the past. I literally walk into situations already thinking that I’m going to fail, because if my own mother hates me then why should these other people like me?

I hope that there is a reason for this really painful time in my life because I feel like I’m nursing a broken heart. And I feel like everyone can see how hated I am which sometimes makes me just want to curl up and hide from the world.

Much Love

Rachel xx

makeup and mothers

Pots and vials and plastic tubes,

I had a few of each, spread across the table.

“You’ll be needing some of that,”

She whispered in my ear.

I shrugged her off dismissively,

But still I reached and grabbed the pot.

I felt her sneer, it burned its way into my back,

Both cold and hot, all at once,

A special skill she’d mastered long ago.

Dutifully, I smeared it on,

I covered every blemish, every pore.

That was what she wanted.

My mother always focused on my flaws.

Long ago I’d lost the confidence

To show my face without its painted mask.

She’d told me that it needed hiding.

The world, it didn’t want to see,

What was lurking underneath,

The building blocks that she had given me.

After all, it was her who formed me in the womb.

Half of me was all of her and that was more than she could take.

If I was less than perfect, then what did that make her?

Better fill my stocking with

The very best that she could buy.

To conceal and colour, to offer a foundation

On which a perfect lie is told,

A lie that paints us in a better light

And keeps our ugly secrets firmly out of sight.

Why the hell do we wear makeup if not to cover up who we really are? I was always getting makeup from my mum. There would always be a little something in my stocking each year even though I never actually wear makeup all that often. I sometimes wonder if the reason she wanted to buy it for me was because she didn’t like what she saw. Maybe she saw the bits of herself that she didn’t like when she looked in the mirror?

Mums do tend to have a way of being super critical and I think a lot of it is because we hope that our kids are going to be a better version of ourselves. But everyone on the planet is flawed and so we are always going to be a little bit disappointed if we put all of our hopes and dreams in another human being.

I do like to play around with makeup every now and then but I refuse to let anyone make me feel like I’m less of a person if I don’t wear it. We’re all beautiful in our own way and we should be proud of the people we are even though we have flaws in both our physical appearance and our personality.

Love who you are and don’t let anyone tell you otherwise.

Much Love,

Rachel xx

flowers on the side of the road

I stooped and touched the drooping petals,

I guessed those flowers had been there

For several weeks at least.

Cellophane all cracked and crumpled,

And a greeting card that’s long since disappeared.

I wondered how the person these were for

Had died, had perished, lost their life.

I wondered if they had a spouse or kids,

Or anyone who missed them dearly, now that they were gone.

And then my thoughts, they trailed away,

To my own life and my own pain.

I missed her even though she lived.

But the breaking of those bonds,

Were just as violent and severe.

I missed her with the same intensity

That I would feel if I were taping flowers to this tree.

She’s gone, not dead, but vanished from my life.

Perhaps I need to buy some flowers,

Make a little grave to mark

The passing of a love that’s done.

Then perhaps I’ll find a way to put her ghost to rest

And remove this heavy weight that’s rested on my chest.

I miss my mum so much. She’s not died but she has cut me out of her life completely and I have found that some of the things I say to people make it sound like she is no longer here at all. I’m so sad about everything that has happened that I just want to put it all to rest. But no matter how hard I try, I can’t give up on the hope that I might get her back. I can’t have the ‘funeral’ because there is so much uncertainty. And I love her and would have her back in a heartbeat.

If you are mourning the end of a relationship I hope that you are staying strong and looking after yourself. Just be open and ready if the person does want to reconcile because hatred is a horrible and energy draining emotion.

Much Love,

Rachel xx