I am so excited to share this post with you, it is from my amazing son, Sean. If you recall a while back I wrote about my difficulties as a teen mom in What It Is Like To Miss 9 Years of My Son’s Life. If you have not read it, I suggest you do before you read this post.
My son is 19-years-old now, and I am so thankful for the amazing young man he has become. I hope you enjoy this post as much as I did, and I would love to hear your thoughts, chat me, or comment below.
Two Worlds One Child
There’s a certain value in separation that spans from good to bad, to everything in between. When someone thinks separate, they often only think of the bad. After all, if two things aren’t together, how can it ever feel whole? How does it function?
When people ask me what it’s like to live with separation those thoughts don’t cross my mind. There has never been a moment in my life where I’ve thought that something wasn’t right or whole about the relationship between my parents. I had grown knowing full well that they had their differences, differences they couldn’t force upon each other, differences that separated us, and made us a different type of family.
My mother and father come from very different backgrounds, the former being a tempered island flower from Puerto Rico, and the latter being an ambitious entrepreneur from the United Kingdom. Where my father found problems in his middle-class lifestyles with himself, my mother found problems in sustaining herself and her family through the low-class struggles.
In a twist of Fate, however, they both found themselves in the same place at the same time, engaging in an effort that would eventually result in me. Because of the situation at the time, things were hectic between my parents, only teens, my time was ultimately split between living with my mother, my father, and my grandparents.
In the Shuffle
In those early years, I remember the times we spent playing, or watching movies and eating various little dishes in the form of Spanish delights and to various other things we could scrounge up. There were various outings by my mother on the limited time I was able to go and be with her. Remembering the small house my mom and most of her family had lived in Kissimmee, a tightly packed community that had plenty for a young child to explore.
More easily remembered was the time we spent moving around more and more. Recalling the many miles traveled and many of them ring with my mother in mind. The many long drives up to Leesburg, to the home my mother shared with a now former boyfriend. Among other things I can remember, it includes a collection of small apartments we moved into, and out. With various roommates along the way that came and went and so did the boyfriends that came, went, and came back once more.
Throughout this time, I really learned what it was like for my mother. As she would later tell me, she was stuck as many are in a world of labor, trying to make a living for herself. Times were especially tough on her, as she was forced to stop attending school and work to sustain herself and me whenever I came by. It was around that time that I could feel that things weren’t so sunny and happy as when I was smaller. Yet, there was something so endearing about this, as much as it confused me at the time.
My mother has always been a caring person from the earliest days I can remember. There was never a selfish or neglectful moment in her care, at times perhaps a tad bit too spoiling in my younger years, but always welcoming nonetheless.
Around this time, I received a small present as a Valentine’s Day gift from my mother: a white teddy bear. By no means was it fancy, but at the same time, it didn’t need to be. As one of the few things from my mother that has lasted, I cherished and still cherish it to this day, but as I think about it, there’s more to this bear than just a small gift.
To me, this bear represents my mother in those days, a standing symbol for working hard to just to satisfy the little things. As days went on, it only became more and more apparent that this was the way life was going to be. My mother, one of the hardest workers I know, was giving her all so she could make it up to me for not having the time to be the best mother, something I always hear her saying as she too recalls the time that has gone by.
In the Present
Now, I spend most of my time living with my mother. We live in a townhouse with my stepfather and my two siblings. We’ve been settled here for years, and haven’t been moving around since. On occasion, I go out and visit my father and his wife, who just recently had my youngest little brother in October 2018, he is now one. The primary difference between now and then is that now it’s completely up to me where I go. Before, I went with whoever wanted to see me, dropped off and picked up in a cycle. While traces of that cycle still stand, in order to spend a fair amount of time with all my family, it’s ultimately asked of me to decide.
Now that I’m 19, and I have my driver’s license, this freedom extends even further. No longer will it be a scramble of where I go as I’ll be free to go where I so wish, and yet I can’t help but reminisce more on the days long past; I can’t help but think of the time I have spent with my mother, and how she, even before settling with her, has impacted my life to this day.
The culmination of her hard life story and persevering care makes me aspire to this goal of one day, I may have a family of my own. One unlike and yet similar to how my family is now. The efforts my mother has gone through to make of life is the force that drives me in many ways. I am driven by the struggle to produce and secure a future where I can be there with what and who I want from the beginning. To care without worry other than for my own kids. At a time when I’m truly ready and as to give them what they need to succeed until they’re off. Just like my mother!
In my mother’s case, she has provided me with a sort of fulfillment that I wouldn’t have had otherwise. When it is all said and done, I would like to repay my mother the world. I would love to return to her the love, care, and lessons she has provided in shaping me. By loving and caring for her back with the things we never got to do before, the things that she deserves in every fiber of her being. No matter how tough she or life has been, I could never ask for anyone better.