How can I conquer this mountain?
June 29, 2020
My mother’s songs
When our mothers were pregnant with us, we heard their laughter, their songs, and some of their memories.
My mother was everything to me when I was younger, and her songs were filled with love.
As we grew up, the songs changed. We would hear them whispered between our lashes, feel their presence in the plaits of our braids.
When I was seven years old, my mom recited one of the patriarchy’s songs to me, saying, “Don’t wear a short skirt.” Did my mother truly like this song? Was she not afraid of it?
Patriarchal songs became a frequent occurrence, building a mountain of anger and guilt between my mother and me.
I tried to understand these songs, to grasp my mother’s anger and her fear of the world, her desire to protect me from it and to protect it from me. Yet, I would often go to sleep feeling anger—anger at the system, anger at the songs, anger at her.
Love riddled with guilt is an impassable mountain, and many girls must struggle within it to survive.
How can I conquer this mountain? How can I love my mother without hearing the world’s rejection of me in her songs?