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Begin Again

Posted Sep 11 2009 2:12pm
Brianna called tonight. She'd been crying. Mike's not happy. It's not her, he has explained. He doesn't know what he wants. I braced myself. She said, calmly, that she's been pretty depressed since her 27th birthday. Her brother has graduated from college. Her sister has begun college. She feels that she's stumbled around and not accomplished anything. For the first time, ever, she did not ask for anything. She said that she does not need anything, but she wants us to be supportive. She is going to take a nurses aid course. Once she's got a job that she can support herself at, she's going to take stock. She wants to go to school. She wants to be independent. She wants to feel good about herself.
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History has taught me to proceed cautiously. I tell her that I want nothing more than to see her succeed, but that I can't really bring myself to get really enthusiastic until I see that these things are actually happening. I explain how each time that she crashes and burns, so do I, that I love her dearly, but I need to step back and watch her begin to step out of the chaos of her life. She has to be the one to choose the new direction to her life. She is quiet. She tells me though that her father told her the same thing.
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We talk, we cry. She tells me that this time it will be different. I've heard this before. But it feels different this time, as if she is truly tired of the life that she is living. There is a quiet about her. She appears to be listening. She tells me at the end of the conversation, "Don't worry mom. This time, I'm going to prove you wrong." I tell her that she would not be proving me wrong. She is smart. I've always known this. She may well be brilliant. It gets lost in the swirling chaotic life she leads. I tell her that I know that she can do it, that I've always known this. And she signs off by saying, "Okay. I'll prove you right then."
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After I hang up, despite myself, I find my hopes buoyed. Maybe, just maybe, this time it will be different. I can only pray. Nothing would make me gladder than to see her stepping free of these chains. I cannot imagine throwing my head back to laugh without that niggling voice telling my heart: "What are you so glad for? Your child is lost."
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I know that I want nothing more,
have never wanted anything more, in life than this one thing:
to see my broken daughter soar.
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