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The Loss of a Mommy by Assad Malik

Mother, I remember when I was just five years old.  How much, I didn't understand. Unlike all the other Pakistani (Aunties) mothers who stayed home, you worked hard and made a living.  Whenever I would see my other pakistani friends interact with there mothers, I was always reminded how different I was.  Seeing the mothers being gentle and nurturing with their children caused a great yearning upon my heart.   I would often ask myself, how come I don't get that TLC?  What is wrong with me?  What did I do wrong?

I lament for the mommy I never had.  How I wish you could have been my mommy instead of my mother.  To this day tears well up because I mourn over the emotional bond that was never fully developed.  Since it was never formed, it has affected my emotional intimacy with women.  Growing up, there were times I would open my heart to you, seeking your gentle comfort; however, your distant reaction would be a blow to the face.

I am not blaming you.  Parenthood doesn't come with any instructions.  All we have to look at is how our and other parents interacted with their kids.    Now the time has arrived to face this issue one on one.  I need to forgive you, so I can go on with my life.   However, forgiveness done in selfish interest is not enough.  I want to forgive you; after looking at how you were raised, I feel compassion.

I can't imagine what it must felt like being told since you were little (by your father) that he wished you were a son (instead of a daughter).  I do realize the impact his words and actions had upon you life.  You not only felt it through words, but in other ways too.  You used to tell me how your parents would dress you up as a boy for as long as they could get away with it.  Looking at your life it all makes sense.  In the 1950's, you payed for your own education and agressively sought a career in medicine, a male dominated field.   Looking at the weak positions of Pakistani women, you took a vow never to be economically dependent on a man. 

In medical school, not only did you study with devotion, but you participated on the rowing team and drama club.  I still remember the picture of you convincingly portraying a male hindu priest in one of University's drama.  Heck, I thought the picture was one an actual man.   By proving you could do most, if not all, the things a son could do, you believed you could earn nana's (grandfather's) respect.  Through all your actions, you aggessively sought something so vital to your being: validation and love from your father.  Because of your struggles and desire for unconditional love, I now understand why you could not be like the other Pakistani women.  Now I can accept your desire for a closer relationship. 

I love you mommy. I am very proud of you.

I have to thank the great spirit for giving me guidance when trying to understand my issues with you, as well as, your own issues.

I also have to thank Shila for helping me restore my faith in women.

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