I think about my mother and I feel like I should die. I am a bad daughter. I am undeserving of love.
Maybe I was never deserving of love and that’s why I was never treated with love.
My kids ask about her. They want to understand. I’m vague. Yes, she kissed me sometimes. No it wasn’t every day. No, I was not hugged every day. There were days when I was hit and told to leave the room when I asked for hugs. When I was younger I thought I wasn’t hit very much because I wasn’t beaten with implements or beaten to the point of bruising. But I was slapped all the time. Especially on my back. She saved face slaps for when I was disrespectful. I was slapped on my back and on my thighs really frequently. When I complained I was told it “didn’t count” and I internalized that for years.
Now I get it. I get how overwhelmed with ongoing trauma she was. I get that she literally couldn’t bear to be touched.
But I didn’t get it when I was three and four and five. I don’t know when I stopped asking for hugs.
I remember coming in my mom’s room with a book and curling up on the bottom corner of her bed to read. That was as close as I was allowed to get to her.
And I’m 35 and I ache with the desire to touch my mother. But I probably never will again.
People don’t understand what those with PTSD mean when they say “trigger”. Because my feelings about my mom are triggered all the time. I feel like I am dropped in the middle of a cyclone of feelings. I’m completely overwhelmed with panic and longing and distress. I feel like I’m still three. I’m still rocking and sobbing and begging my mother to pick me up from my foster home.
I want my mommy and I can’t have her. I never really had her. She never felt like mine.
And she is probably going to die with this entirely unresolved between us. And there is nothing I can do about it but sit in a room and cry. When I really should be working. But I had something come up that triggered a wall of feelings and I can barely think or move because I’m consumed with wanting my mother.
I will never. Ever. Ever. be capable of doing anything that makes me deserving of a mother. That ship has sailed.
I was born not enough. I will die not enough.
This strikes me as a good topic for a lot of somatic work.