Couple days ago, during my mental support group the LCSW leader once said, ‘We are not our label. It is not the problem from the label itself, it is our mindset set on being alive within the label’s limit. We need to change the label, if we can’t change the label, we shall live beyond the label means. ’ It took me almost 40 years to figure this out. I am not a victim, but a gift from the almighty God. I don’t need to run hurry toward other’s appreciation, instead search the peace within being alive and born. I wasn’t like this when I was 8 or 9.
I was the most unwanted girl and that was when I first truly notice who is my mother.
The day I ‘reunion’ with my biological mother was around the time I keep asking why I have to call grandmother ‘grandmother’. I just can’t accept the truth might be different than what I always been imagined.
“Hello, auntie! Nice to meet you.” I said hi to this lady with short hair, I thought I could be brave by being polite to break the ice.
Nobody heard what I said. My face turned red with embarrassment.
“Say MOM, this is your mother,” Dad said with his normal brunt tone when he turned his face away.
“…mom,” I said with a very low voice. I know what mom means, I learned at school last week of what family tree means, but she is not my mother. I was so sure about this. Brother told me this lady is an evil monster when I asked him when I pointed her photo in the album.
“Come closer, let me look at you.” This ‘mom’ lady said.
I came closer to her and she hugged me tightly. I almost out of my breath. I hate people hold me this tight yet I understand that is what adult does. They liked to torture children when they express love.
“Little brother, you come over too.” This ‘mom’ lady said to my brother. He stared at her and standing still as a statue. He reluctantly came closer.
I don’t know how to react to this, I reminded myself have to act polite. I am a good well-behaved girl. I have no emotion on this, and I let my logical took over.
“Who am I? Why am I here? Who is my ‘real’ mother? Where am I coming from? Was I being bad so everyone lies to me? Did I get in trouble and everyone wants to punish me by saying this lady is my mother? Why isn’t grandmother jasmine my mother? Why I cannot just call grandmother ‘mother’?” I think deeply and spacing out. I do not understand this moment why am I here, am I ready to head home yet? I miss my rainbow pattered blanket.
“Take a look to see what I give you. Try it on and see is it fit you” This ‘mom’ lady pulls out a purple-white checker pattern dress. It has a purple satin ribbon bow on it. Peter pan collar in white and it is knee length. It is pretty.
I started to count how many squares on this dress while I am trying it on. It fits like a glove. Perfect gift and makes a great contrast in this chaos mind I am having. “Why is this stranger gives me a gift? Does she want to adopt me?” I keep the train of thought running in my mind and I still not accept this story everyone makes up for my existence.
“You look super cute in this dress; do you like it?” This ‘mom’ lady spoke again.
I nodded silently. I have to admit this is a pretty dress, and I must keep quiet I wasn’t allowing to wear any dresses; I have to conceal the truth outside of the family. Mess stays within, stays within into the trashcan I put inside my mind.
“It looks ugly.” Brother finally spoke. I don’t understand why he hates my pretty dress so much. I shall remain silent, hold on my thoughts because I am in a conceal mode, I made up rules to make me feel better on this situation to encounter this ‘mom’ lady. My face turned red without reason.
“Act nice, brother.” This ‘mom’ lady said to my brother. My brother did not respond to anything. The silence moment is like the whole world stop for a very long time, at least in my mind I think time just stopped for this awkward moment. I want to go home. Where is grandmother Jasmine? I miss my grandmother and she is at the hospital I think.
The ‘reunion’ ends with photo taking. I put the biggest smile on my face to cover my doubts. I tried to play along this game everyone setting me up for with politeness. I act like the anime character I watch every day, I was the princess who always happy and act like sunshine to my family. I must keep going on pretending I’m happy. That is the only way to surviving what adult called this life. Life is full of pretending happiness and nobody likes to see anyone crying or angry. Nobody likes emotional break down, they ignored the one cause trouble and send the trouble ones to the hospital and lock them up. I put an even bigger smile on my face and felt proud that I figure out how to deal with this whole situation. I win, and I win alone, I won’t lose in this adult trick game about my existence because of all your lies. I promised to myself I would always stay truthful in this game, the early punk personality start developed inside me. I refused to listen to all you stupid liars. I am not this easily be fooled. I am not stupid you idiot!
The reunion became a scar in my heart.