I knew one day I’d get the call, the call that she was gone.
For most of my 23 years of existence my mother was sick. She had various stomach issues, suffered from depression and constantly struggled with her biggest demon, a prescription drug addiction. I had heard the words, “it’ll be different this time” periodically through out my life and was never surprised when nothing changed. It became a phrase to me that eventually had no meaning at all. Most days the only thing I could do was fake a smile and pretend like everything was fine.
Promises of being sober were never kept, while more pills continued to find there way onto her nightstand from new doctors. Months of being completely fine were often shattered in an instant after the slight hint in her voice that she was she was messed up yet again. There wasn’t a particular prescription drug she favored. To an extent any drug would work, as long as it took the edge off.
My brothers and I never had anything short of a great childhood. We often spent summers at Disney World and celebrated our birthdays much like other children did. Holidays seemed to be the worst for my mother though, which only made the pills seem that more appealing. It was normal for her to be in the hospital on days like Thanksgiving or Christmas and we had gotten use to the idea that it was just another hospital visit.
I remember visiting her once in rehab. We brought a bag with her favorite candy, shampoo, and little some stuff like nail polish to keep her busy until she returned home. It wasn’t long until she was considered “stable” enough to return to her life of being a mom.
My mother was far from a bad mother. She did her best to keep it together and was always there when my brothers or I needed her. She taught me to love, laugh and be the strong woman that I am today. I constantly thank God everyday that she was put on this Earth long enough to see what I got to accomplish in the 22 years she was with me. I wouldn’t have been able to get as far as I’ve come if it wasn’t for her pushing me every stop of the way.
After I moved to college our relationship almost seemed to get stronger. Even though she was an hour and a half away we were constantly on the phone and she knew where I was almost every second of the day. I would talk to her at least 8 or 9 times a day about anything under the sun, she was the only one that ever really got where I was coming from.
Ultimately the problem that she fought everyday was her downfall. It constantly ate away at her until it eventually took her life. The pills made her into a person she wasn’t and it’s a sad thing to have to see happen to someone you care so deeply for. I constantly struggle with wondering what I could have done differently. I often blame myself for something I had no control over. I ask myself why I didn’t try harder to get my mom the help she so desperately needed or why I wasn’t there when she was at her worse. It eats away at me wondering what I did to deserve something so horrible to happen to me, but the fact of the matter is I couldn’t have changed fate.
My life will never be the same. That phone call will play over and over in my head until the day I die.
We can either take our battles as a sign of defeat or we can rise up and learn to become stronger from them. Life is never going to get easier. We will be forever fighting to keep our heads above the current. Even though I wish everyday I could get one more phone call with my mom, I know that she will be with me forever and that’s one thing no one can ever take from me.