Wednesday, 21 March 2012

Something of great importance to me happened two nights ago

Jennifer is hosting Write on Wednesdays this week and our prompt is a line (above) from Alex Miller's "Autumn Laing". So the challenge is "Set your timer for 5 minutes or write about 500 words. If you’re looking for specific feedback, please let us know. Otherwise – enjoy the writing."
I've done a 5 minute flow of consciousness, not quite sure where it came from!

Have you ever wondered what it would be like to grow up not knowing the truth about your mother? When you are a shiny smily child you believe that you do know all about her, that she is an angel in heaven (well that is what they told you). But then, when the adults deem the time is right, they tell you their new version of the truth. This, of course, is only their perception, the story that fits best with the reality they live with, the truth that they believe to be the right thing to say. What do you say to a teen who thinks their mother is dead?
“Your mother had some problems”, they said, “she was never the same after what happened, she just couldn’t cope, so she went away”. It never really gelled, it never fitted the photos, the smiling face gazing at a babe in arms.
And then the years of wondering, the watching of faces in crowds for a glimmer of familiarity. Somehow I thought I would “ just know” when she was near me, but that feeling never came. With the arrival of my own child, her absence was more acute, more poignant and more painful. How to be a mother-less mother?

And then, just two nights ago, there was a knock at my door.