Just by the look on her face, I knew nothing but bad news was following. It’s that look that she always gives before telling me something I just don’t want to hear. My mom’s tone was shaky and cautious. Her voice cracked and her eye contact was fleeting. My BOLD, tell-it-like-it-is, HOOD AF (I mean more street than most) mom couldn’t even hold a steady gaze at me. What?!
This had to be it.
They say Karma is real and welp…I just knew this was about to be mine. Either everything wrong I ever did in life was coming back to haunt me or I was starring on Ashton Kutcher’s “Punk’d” television show right now. Secretly, I hoped it was the latter. Producers you can come out and yell “SCENE!” The jig is up
… only it wasn’t.
For the love of God! One day. 24 hours of uninterrupted happiness. Please? No. That was too much to ask for and in the moment I could feel my sadness turn into something dark and foreign. It didn’t look like the minor tears and sniffles that I was familiar with. No, this was different. It was beyond hurt and surpassed rage, but I just couldn’t put a finger on what it was. How do you define a myriad of emotions flooding your heart with one label? Since I couldn’t understand anything I was feeling, I dumped them. I dumped them all. I dumped all of my feelings before my mom could even finish her sentence.
Internally, I scanned through every part of my body, searching for every emotion, every feeling, every sensation that made me human and clicked the DELETE ALL button. I didn’t take the time to separate joy from sorrow or thrill from gloom … none of that. Every thing had to GO! In seconds, I trashed every single emotion until all that was left of me was an empty shell of an 18-year-old mother that was tired.
Meisha it’s going to be okay baby. Listen, you have a beautiful baby boy and he’s worth living for. I know you’re over it. I know you don’t even want to hear what your mom is about to say. I know your hopelessness is through the roof, but hear me out, one day you are going to look back and this will all be a part of your story. Meisha…
I didn’t say a word. No one even noticed that parts of me were dying right here and now. I wasn’t in the hospital room anymore. I was sitting on the floor of a cold, bare room in my mind. I can’t even tell you the things that my mom tried to say to “make me feel better” and “warm me up” before dropping the bomb on me. However, I was jolted back to reality as soon as I heard, “you can get your high school diploma this summer …if you can’t make graduation”.
“MA WHAT?! What are you trying to imply? You know I worked hard to graduate at the top of my class. You out of all people know. I don’t care about a bed rest. I don’t care what the doctors say, what the the teachers say…WHOEVER. Everybody tried it. I’m walking across that stage. That’s not even a question,” I screamed. I snapped.
Despite not even being able to stand up without crying out in pain from my c-section, this was one compromise I was unwilling to make. Even if THEY had my best interest and health in mind, I didn’t care. My rational had been deactivated with the deletion of my feelings. No one was going to take this from me.
My mom and I went back and forth for a while before I realized that I was fighting a battle that I wouldn’t win. I also realized that my friends were still in the hospital room and well, I was embarrassed. They didn’t know all I had been going through since being here because I didn’t tell anyone. They just saw me arguing with my mom for no reason…arguing with someone that wanted to help. When I looked at my son’s innocent eyes, I knew I had to stop. Though he couldn’t comprehend what was going on, he made me do a thing that I thought I couldn’t do anymore.
He made me feel.
I thought I had tossed out every single emotion, but I looked at him and felt love. He didn’t deserve an empty shell of a mom. If I didn’t know God was real before, I knew now. Only a miracle could bring back my feelings so quick and strong.
The bright glow of a sunny afternoon began to darken into auburn thickness. My mom who had been in and out all day had come back just before visitor hours ended. I apologized for earlier. She wasn’t “my enemy”. She just wanted what was best.
“Meisha I’m not going to tell you this is going to be easy because it’s not. Being a mom is going to get tough some days but don’t think for a minute that I haven’t seen how hard you have been working and..,” she slowed as if she trying to create a dramatic effect before finishing her sentence.
“…but I spoke to your teachers again and you can attend your graduation under one condition. It’s only a few days away and you can barely even walk. Even the doctors don’t want you moving, so here’s what we are going to do…You can cross that stage, but you will have to be in a wheel chair”
I CRIED HARD - - only this time the tears were inundated with overwhelming joy.
Maybe I wasn’t an empty shell.
Maybe life wasn’t purposely trying to upset me.
Maybe this was the start of new beginnings…