Secret Pop

Sep 24, 2001

"No. No. No. This ruins a child."

Conversations with my mother lately have been both encouraging and maddening. I am moved to see her exhibit an interest in understanding why her daughters sometimes suffer unnecessarily. I admire her recent desire to find the root of the anguish, even when she may discover that the root is her. It causes me to show compassion when once there might have been scorn. While the communication is still arduous and the resolution is not yet upon us, I am encouraged to see us trying. Too many times in my family we stop before the trying begins. We surrender to the hopelessness of unhappy results. And there's no need to do it. When I see my mother soften, when I see her struggling with the innate desire to help and the inevitable urge to control, my empathy is great and my words become more tender. I have learned not to eschew the suffering for its own sake. I have learned to cherish pain and disappointment for the way that they seem to till the soil within me, leaving me fertile with new hopes and aspirations. It is difficult to see past the blank page of disappointment to the florid words that will one day fill it. More and more, I am compelled to pick up my pen.

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