We were all younger once. I know that seems like a distant memory. Ah, to be young and free. Free to do stupid things all over again. How many of us have made stupid choices? How many have acted foolishly or hurt others with our recklessness? How many of us have done things that we wish we hadn’t? One, maybe two? I think it is probably a much larger number than that. I know I can include myself in that category for sure.
Today’s Susie is much different than the Susie of 10 years ago. I am stronger, perhaps even a wiser version of me. I for sure don’t make the same stupid choices I once did. I guess where this all started is that I got a message from someone that I hadn’t heard from in years. They told me that they “bet I was a wonderful mother.” It was a simple and sweet statement, but it made me think of the person that I was once when I knew them. That person was not mother material. Now, I was not a horrible person. I wasn’t beating puppy dogs or even getting arrested for jaywalking. I was a girl. I was a stupid girl who didn’t have any responsibilities and the ones I did have I barely managed. I did whatever I wanted and sometimes that was making bad choices or perhaps no choice at all.
I thought about them calling me a good mother and I wondered what evidence they had to support that? My Facebook page? We all know how brutally honest Facebook is right? Haha. I know it was probably just a nice thing to say and to be honest they probably didn’t really even believe it when they said it. Maybe I was overanalyzing it like I always do. I just couldn’t shake the thoughts though. Then I thought about all of the people I once knew. The ones whose lives were a mess. The ones who had screwed people over. The ones who had screwed me over. The ones who were lost in their early years just as I had once been. I thought about them all and I wondered, “Have they changed like I have?” Have they grown and matured and become better people?
I see so many faces from my past and the impressions I have of those faces are from specific times. Those times are not who those people are though. Those times are simply “times.” We must all learn and make mistakes in order to grow into something better. We must all mess up. It hurt to think that people still see me as the person I was. It hurt to think that I would forever be that stupid girl and yet how many times have I thought that of others?
The young Susie explored herself down to the depths of despair and because she did that she allowed this Susie to be stronger for my children and for myself. I am the Susie of Today. I am nothing more or less than that. I hope that I can begin to let others have a clean slate. I hope that I can look at those faces and not stigmatize them by their youth and foolishness. I want to work on forgiving time for what it permitted us all to do.
I am and am not the person I was. I am a compilation of times and mistakes. I am a compilation of realizations. I am a compilation of improvements and Yes of setbacks too. They told me that they bet I was a good mother. I can say with full confidence that I AM a good mother. I work hard everyday to provide the best for my children. They never question my love of them. They never fear being alone. They will never know the suffering that some children face. I will kiss them goodnight every night I can. I will listen to their chatter and I will wipe away their tears. Most importantly I will show them that not all paths in life are to be walked down and if they stumble upon the wrong path I will be there to pick them back up without judging them for their mistakes.
Thank you for the compliment. I hope that it was earnest and unattached. I think that is what most of us would like to get from one another. A chance to prove who we truly are and not be held back by our own selves.