I need to talk to you. I was listening to India Arie’s Talk To Her and her lyrics touched me, deeply. You know I do not have many girl friends and I find it hard to communicate with them. Growing up with brothers, being more of a Daddy’s girl and feeling like women are black and white toward me- with many of them intimidated– I have not developed the necessary skills to deal with female relationships as easily and properly as I do with the other gender. We have gone through this ourselves, together and separately. I even had this issue last night when conversing with a Romanian girl. I know she is bright and open-minded. I just did not know what to say. Listening to this song today made me confront some hard truths: I am missing out on the power and beauty that makes women, women; I subconsciously value men more than women which needs to stop; and I have undermined your precious womanly value, therefore undermining my own.
There have been many times I have treated you so disrespectfully and allowed others to treat you without respect and gratitude. For that I am truly sorry… I am crying as I type and reflect. You are there for me, even through this. I wish you slapped me. I wish I snapped “watch your mouth!” to others when they disregarded you. Through the years, I have tried to teach you to demand respect because I have wanted so much for you to be the woman I see in you. So much I have been disappointed when I have not seen the changes and improvements I wished to see in you.
I ignored your accomplishments and resented your perceived failures, feeling like you were deserving of the ill treatment from others who were and are undeserving of your love and your light. Because I wanted you to stand up for yourself and be better. I did not accept you; I have not accepted you for a long time. You have been so honest with us about your baggage and your flaws, and I abused it. I have been so frustrated in my own life when I was home- not being honest with myself– that everything around me seemed to discourage and disable me from living how I wanted to and loving myself the way I needed to. I am so sorry Mum. It has never been your fault. You have never been a burden in my life. When I think of how strong and open I am, I owe it all to you and Dad.
The truth is, you are a strong, beautiful woman. You are whole and your imperfections have shown me so much beauty that I look for such depth in others. I have loved you, but in the wrong way, limited by my own agenda. I have defined you by the things you are not; and by roles because you have never defined yourself as otherwise. I have preached to you because I did not want to lose you and I wished for you to dump your baggage. But in doing so, I have neglected you as a person while we are here, together.
When I think of all the times I have seen you seeing less of yourself, I realise I have supported it. I was a bystander and I let you feel less than you are. I let you pity yourself, talk down to yourself, beat yourself up. Making a habit of talking about your health, your environment, your pursuit of purpose when people asked you how you were. Depending so much on relationships to feel any self-worth. One of the reasons why I left was because I wanted you to learn to depend on yourself. I am discovering though, I have not equipped you with the necessary tools. Embracing and loving you has become conditional and circumstantial.
I adore you. I really do not need you to change because you are already perfect. You are not me, I understand. Beyond your role as my Mother and as a Wife; beyond what I wish for you, I shine because I carry your light: a light only which you embody. Your laughter, your emotions, your stubborn nature, your compassion, your passion, your fire, your flaws. The times you get enthusiastic and optimistic once someone provides you an opportunity or changes your mindset. Your hugs and your Dr Phil moments. There is only one of you in this world, Coral Yvonne Bright. I want everyone to know your name. You are outstanding and remarkable. You do not need an education, a purpose or positive outcomes and opportunities to be outstanding. You just are and you give me something unique, as a woman. You have made me praise the subtle, beautiful qualities in women I tend to overlook.
Right now as I sit here, you are my sole inspiration. I will do what I can to change my role as a daughter, not trying to teach YOU to value yourself. But instead, to teach MYSELF to apply your value to everything I do and to make damn sure the world acknowledges. I will do my best to see you in every woman I meet and admire their qualities, their fragility and their teachings. I will etch you in my heart and show your beauty and my loving ode to you, through my sincere actions. You will travel with me and be my legacy, my muse, my archetype. You will no longer be behind me in the background; a precursor and after thought. I promise to talk about you with the love and admiration I feel wholeheartedly. You are and will always be my pride and my virtue.
Love your daughter, your vessel, Laura.
P.S. I am sorry this is in formal writing, not to your face and out for everyone to read. But I want to be honest and I want everyone to know you and what you give to me.