Dear Mom…

I wish I hadn’t been such an asshole when I was younger.

I wish I had known how precious our time was and realized how lucky I was to have you as a Mom so much sooner than I did.

I’m so sorry that I screamed ‘I hate you’ at you when I was 10 years old. And 12 years old. And 15 years old. And probably fifty-dozen other times. I never really hated you.

I’m sorry I used to sit outside your bedroom door after a fight, knocking and crying incessantly and not giving you the space…


Photo by Sydney Sims on Unsplash

PREFACE:

I read through this today after publishing it yesterday & realized that perhaps I should not use the term ‘victim’? Maybe ‘survivor’ is better? And maybe I shouldn’t have been so flippant as to make a comment about decking my husband (later in the essay)? I don’t know. But I NEVER want to offend anyone or make light of anything that may be considered offensive. …


I spend a lot of time writing about my struggles

…about the myriad of tough life moments I’ve had over the years…

…about the trials and tribulations that I’ve gone through, both due to my own poor decisions and irresponsibility as well as simply being dealt a few shitty cards in an otherwise pretty decent hand.


My Mom has been dead for almost three years.

And if you’ve read any of my personal essay-type pieces, you’re probably sick to death (bad pun?) of hearing about my dead mother.

And how I helped her die.

And how her death has impacted my life.

Etc. Etc. Etc.


“grayscale photography of a man standing in front of a Jesus graffiti” by Gift Habeshaw on Unsplash

I like to consider myself to be a pretty open-minded person. Okay, very open-minded.

How so, you ask?

Well…I suppose politically, for one.

I generally avoid political convos — I am scarred from my Dad being incapable of having political conversations without absolutely losing his shit…but…if I were forced to classify myself politically, I’d say I’m liberal…?

…I think marijuana should be 100% legal everywhere. Aside from the obvious benefits and myriad of helpful uses that it has, and the fact that it is natural and non-addictive (yes, yes, I realize this is highly debatable — I am only speaking…


“woman in gray dress walking on sand” by Velizar Ivanov on Unsplash

I’m not talking small changes, like hairstyle or eating habits.

I mean BIG changes — like moving, relationships, careers.

I am obviously exploring this for selfish reasons as I am currently trying to decide what my next step in life is — not career-wise, but…I guess, location-wise.

Even though I am realistically not thriving in my personal life where I currently am, I am not unhappy. In fact, I’m pretty darn happy.

I’m also pretty darn alone.

So, my question is — do I need to move somewhere new to try and broaden my personal life and grow that area…


“woman sitting and leaning wall grayscale photography” by Tammy Gann on Unsplash

2

“Wake up. Zoe! Wake up! Please, wake up!” I felt someone urgently shaking my entire body and lifting my head up to the toilet. My mind struggled to come to back to life, the pills having left it foggy.

“Uggghhhhhh,” a guttural moan escaped from my lips followed by several dry heaves.

“You did not just take ten Tylenol, little girl. I found the bottle and it is empty,” my mother whispered angrily into my ear. She only called me little girl when she was really mad at me. …


AUGUST

1

“woman lying on bed in room” by Annie Spratt on Unsplash

“You did what?” my father growled. His eyes were like little blue saucers bulging out of his head. He leapt out of my parent’s bed and stormed over to me, his entire body instantly rigid with fury.

I stood meekly in his doorway, staring down at the dark gray carpet. He always managed to make me feel like a little child when he got angry. “I…uh…I kind of…took some pills and…” I didn’t want to say it again. I felt his eyes searing into me, his rage mounting. I wanted nothing more than to run back to my…


“river surrounded by tree” by eberhard grossgasteiger on Unsplash

Grandfather’s hands gripped the steering wheel on our ancient, rickety pickup truck, guiding it down the backcountry road towards our family farm. I noticed his hands. They were filled with wrinkles and calluses, tanned and weary from years of hard work.

He had dedicated his life to our family’s peach fields. But despite his best efforts, we were poor. Many night’s spent hungry kind of poor.

Though weathered, his hands still revealed all the strength and dignity that defined Grandpa Yiannis. Glancing down at my own small little boy hands, riddled with dirt and grime, I wondered if one day…

Margot Carmichael

Writer + Producer | CreativeThinker 💡 | AnimalLover 🐾 | Life+Death+Love❤ | margotcarmichael.org

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