Twelve years old, letters to my mother

The biggest lesson I took away from reading my old journal

My mother taught me

how to be a woman.

I learned what was true,

By watching what she allowed to be true for herself.

Her compass was the entirety of my map.

I learned her path before getting lost on my own because it seemed safer.

For years I chased the gold stars that would come when I followed her example.

It wasn't just her, later it would be friends, teachers, mentors. But my mom was my first relationship when I outsourced my own voice and substituted it for hers. I became the mirror holding her reflection, and without her reflection,

I didn't know who I was.

"Roses are red

Violets are blue

I will go dead

If you

Ever leave me."