Thursday, March 22, 2012

And sometimes we don't.

My mother makes hats. My daughter practices her letters. I listen to accents and the stories their people share.

We’ve each plugged ourselves in, found our respective ways to be. We know joy. We share fears. Some of the time.

I like to call this logic.

I recently started a new job... One I wanted and knew I could do. One I’d be happy to let define me for a while. Stretch me, even.

And so: I prepared. I read books, bought outfits. I put away all my flats to ensure I was/am always 6 feet tall (heels). I listened to the vocabulary of the hierarchy and made it mine.

I met my staff, my colleagues, my team. I admire them in how tentative some were, how open, how distrustful. I let the hierarchal speak go. Their accents captured me to listen to their own stories.

One day, when I came home I called my mother to tell her how important I was/I am. I was/am proud of myself. I was certain she'd be too. And she was. She started making connection: New job, new location? Yes, Mummi. She then asked me if I was doing data entry... I’m a director at a state agency serving refugees, immigrants. I manage 1/3 of all staff there. But she’ll never know that. Never,ever understand.

I try not to sink. I said in a very small voice “No, Mummi, no data entry”. My chin quivered. It would have upset her to hear me cry. It upset me to know how few people I have to share this with.

Something specific about having a parent, a mother who makes hats, a mother with a chronic mental health condition:

There will always be this separation. I will always be a hungry island. We’ll likely always have this grabbing-at-air –but-not-reaching each other thing.

We find ways to each other, most days.

But, as my 3 year old likes to remind me: Sometimes we don’t.

1 comment:

  1. Another beautiful share, Diane. As your friend, please know you always have many who are here and get excited about every joy, success and achievement you have to share. Love you, Chica!