As I’ve gotten older, it’s also become clearer to me how my parents see the world, and what they always wanted for their children. Whenever I visit my them, it’s a funny sense of what I call “then, not now”, which loosely translate to the feelings of the past in the present. Seeing them age, seeing them become increasingly sensitive to their spiritual side and seeing them become more passive about things they were once crazy about – it’s funny, and sad, though inevitable.
My mother was always the soft-hearted one, with kind words and never a lack of imagination. My father, hardworking till this day, ironclad on the outside, a bit passive aggressive still. Both of which are lovely people, however opposite they can be.
When I went back home this time, it was to celebrate Mother’s Day. It was a short weekend, but I was reminded that her wisdom, despite being strange from time to time, spoke volumes to me. I found that I have inherited some of her qualities in me – empathy for others, laughing aloud at my own actions, lack of cooking skills, but trying desperately hard anyway, her strength to see light in everything.
I miss my childhood home, the comings and goings of a far simpler life. Sometimes the bay area seems pressure-filled, and often, saturated with talent that far exceeds normal expectations. The idea that, one must be the cream of the crop to succeed, is stressful. The need to belong often a lingering afterthought of the fear of failing.
Going back to my mother’s house though, and her telling me that even as a child I wandered off looking for adventures, a fearless sister who took her brother around town, driving at 16, validated what is here and now. She looks to me for stories of adventures, I see that now. Despite the duality of the life I live there and the life I have here, i am expected to find this adventure.
It gave me the sense that even though I don’t know where I am going sometimes,
I’m exactly where I should be.
This is what my mother taught me.