Hello, It Wasn't Nice To Meet You.
Some rewritten letters between an estranged daughter and her mother.
I have been thinking about this letter for a very long time, and of you for even longer.
I suppose it's strange to be hearing from me. I know I must have left a lot of chaos in my wake and I'm sorry for that. I hope we can meet up this Mother's Day (kinda poetic don't you think?) and sort everything out. I've attached the following address for a nice coffee shop near here. My contact information is also below. Please, I hope you will give me a chance.
I know I wasn't really there, but I am your mother. And I've lived so much life from the foothills in the east to the rocky mountains. From the jobs I've had to the rides I've hitched. I have so much to tell you. As I'm sure you do too.
I hope there is no malice when you meet me and you understand why I had to go.
Sincerely - your mom - Deborah.
Hello again mom,
I want to thank you for taking the time to meet with me today. It was incredibly revealing and I think it will be good for us to start over. I hope you know I don't judge you for what happened or for me...
I have to be honest now I...
I must admit I never really missed you. Sure there were moments when I daydreamed about what it would've been like to have you in my life and times when I wondered what was going on in your life, but I didn't really miss you. I didn't think about you much and I certainly didn't hope you'd come back any time soon.
The truth is I was glad you left that you ran away and lived out your bohemian dreams and left me and dad behind. Frankly, you weren't really there when you were at home you just took up time and money, and I hated you. Because you didn't care.
So why was I supposed to miss you, to want you, to need you, or any other fucking thing? Because you pushed me out into this hellish little world? Because I share some of your genes? With all due respect that's not enough. Because you're a mother and it's mother's day and we're all meant to love and wax eloquent about how mothers hold society together and made us strong and we're grateful for them and buy gifts but during father's day there's just a few shitty ties and half-hearted posts? Is that why?
Why do you want to come back to me at all? You had fun it seems. You felt pressured by a conservative family to rush in to a marriage after you were pregnant and so you confined yourself to a miserable life and made my infancy and dad's few years of marriage miserable too. It was frankly good that you left all in all. So why should I have missed you?
But just because it was good you left doesn't mean I'm not still bitter about it. Still doesn't absolve you. All it means is that I have to be practical about it.
I never disliked mother's day, if anything I liked it. A lot of my friends have fantastic mothers who made them nice lunches and huge birthday parties, why shouldn't they have fun? Besides, I usually ended up getting gifts and food from their moms. People always expect me to care but I had enough with what I had... Not everyone needs a nuclear family. And besides, those family types can blow up on you anyway.
I don't need a mother's day. Dad was more than enough. He loved me, cared for me, he gave me everything, and didn't ask for anything back. Dad was my father's day, my mother's day, and so much more. You were just a stranger who quit before the going even got tough. Yet here you come back, here to reap all the rewards of a mother-daughter relationship you never made.
It's a little selfish, and I shouldn't have agreed to meet you. It wasn't nice to know who you were. You just made me mad.
I admit this letter wasn't that artful, but your cheeky meeting suggestion wasn't that great either.
So linger on in your own time. I've got my own life and I'd appreciate it if you'd let me live it.
Deborah rewrote a response letter about a dozen and a half times, oscillating between anger, regret, blame, and remorse. But eventually, she settled on not writing anything back at all. It did make her grieve for a moment, but Angel was right. Adoptive moms don't bring any new children into this world and yet they have more claim to the title than she does. Ten months isn't enough. Children aren't crops you can leave to grow on their own. You have to actually raise them. She hadn't raised Angel.
But perhaps she raised herself. From a sniffling subservient 18-year-old to a woman who had made her own path. Someone who made their own life. Someone who grew into her own independent person. Someone she had taught and nurtured for years and could finally walk on her own two feet. Someone who became a modern-day beat. She'd reborn herself, she'd raised herself.
Her ex-husband Matthew was Angel's father. Deborah was her own mother, and perhaps that was enough for this world.
About the author
I'm a new writer who enjoys fiction writing, personal narratives, and occasionally political deep dives. Help support my work and remember, you can't be neutral on a moving train.