“It’s like…it’s like something is missing inside me. Like there’s this hole I can’t fill up and it’s been there such a long time now. It hurts…aches all the time, Megan, and there’s no way to make it stop. I think I’d give almost anything to have a mom who really loves me. The kind who gives hugs and wants to know how my day was.” I felt a flush of embarrassment creeping up my neck as the words spilled from my mouth, but I’d already said so much, I figured I might as well finish. “Sometimes I think there just can’t be anything better than that. There’s a feeling, a certain love only a mom can give you.”
One of my characters in the Guardian series feels a void deep in her soul from never having a true connection to her mother. It wasn’t as though her mother wasn’t part of her life. Her mother was always around. However, her mother took no interest in her life. Other than meeting her physical needs, her mother felt no desire to be part of her child’s life.
I don’t know about other authors, but I draw upon my own experiences quite a bit when I mold my characters, especially my main characters. So it should come as no surprise when I tell you that this character’s feelings mirror many of my own.
My own mother has always been far more interested in my sister’s life than mine. I spent more years than I care to admit trying to do amazing things to draw praise from my mother’s lips. To leave her no option but to notice me and want to know me better. However, the most I ever managed was to gain her attention for short spurts of time, only to have my hopes shattered when she lost interest once again.
For many years, I dealt with feeling jealous of my sister’s natural ability to attract my mother’s love and devotion. I wrestled bitterness and sadness. I questioned my worth.
And then I had children of my own. Three beautiful girls. One day someone asked me which of my children was my favorite.
I don’t have a favorite child. Each of my children has a unique personality. They are so beautifully different from each other, and I absolutely love and adore them for who they are. I could never pick a favorite.
Maybe some parents have favorites among their children. I never will.
The void I have carried in my heart for so many long years, that yearning to be loved and cherished in my mother’s eyes, taught me how to be the kind of mother I never had.
Because of the wounds I carry in my heart, I am driven to be the very best mom I can possibly be. I am not naive enough to believe I will ever be perfect, but I am strong enough to take what once hurt me and use it to make me a better person each day. I strive to let my girls know how loved and adored they are everyday of their lives. I want them to feel valued and important. Loved and listened to.
I don’t want them growing up with the same Mommy Issues their mommy grew up with. I know we will have difficult times, just like all parents and children do, but I feel better equipped to navigate things as they come up because of my own experiences.