When I was 4 years old, my parents divorced and I moved in with my mom. She was a brilliant doctor, but was never very social. We never had dinner together or went on family vacations. She had migraines, was hospitalized frequently and cleaned her home every day. I felt lonely living with her. When I was 18, I got married and left home. A few months later, I left Russia and moved to the U.S. with my husband. When I got pregnant and my husband left me, my mother promised that she would come to the U.S. to help me with my baby. When my son was born, she told me to figure it out on my own. After that, she stopped answering her phone. In 2007, I came to see her with my new husband and son, but she did not open her door. In 2008, we caught her leaving her home and she let us in. There was no bed, chairs or food in the fridge. She had fancy wallpaper and beautiful paintings, but her apartment was empty, immaculately clean, dark and eerie. My mom wanted nothing to do with us. When we came back to the U.S., she disconnected her phone line permanently and we never spoke again. She was totally unreachable.
I had a vivid dream in April that I went to Russia to see my mom but couldn't get in and left feeling devastated. A week later, I found out that my mom died. I sat on the ground frozen for hours. My husband had to take time off to care for our four young children because I couldn't. My life lost its meaning. However, her door that I despised was finally open! I experienced a powerful existential crisis. At the funeral, I told my mom that I want to remember the day she brought me home from the hospital and gazed at me with motherly love.
I went to see a medium, she said my mom was waiting for me and that although she couldn't let me in, she loved me. Her message to me was to not judge her harshly because she could not connect with anyone and one of her biggest joys was having me. I am now pursuing a graduate degree in counseling and I realize that my mom struggled with a number of mental illnesses. I found out from her brother that she was abused by her stepfather; trauma most likely caused her mental illness. My goal in life is to overcome fears... (cont in comment)