Shit, I’m 27.

Last night was super spiritual.

I watched Scandal, I poured a glass of wine, and I took a shower. Then, after said shower, I stood in front of a mirror. Sans clothing. Sans a towel. Sans everything I thought I loved and defined me. I stood there in all of my 27 year old glory and admired the work that I’d done. I reveled in my tattoos; from the ones with stories to the ones where I can barely remember what I drank that night. I bathed in the ambiance of the muscle tone that I’d built on dedicating myself to the gym sometimes. I thanked the universe for every grey hair. I breathed a sigh of relief that my stomach protrudes nothing. I relinquished my feelings of old age to feelings of coming of age. My age. I’m 27. I’ve been granted that many years to do something. To be something. I think I’ve spent them well.

It doesn’t mean a damn thing, though, without my mother. My lighthouse. The one person who, amongst all my extra shit, stood in the front row and cheered me on. I was her first. She’ll tell you she made plenty of mistakes with me but I can only name one; my little brother. She gave me, literally handed me, the confidence to be me. She unadulterated her love for her children so that we could be fearless in this world. She filled us with the best morals and music the world could offer and, when the time came, made us leave. She made us, me, experience the world. She traveled with us and gave us a sense of gratitude for what others may not’ve had. She didn’t mold me. She flourished me. I fear having children of my own because I know I’ll never be half the parent she was.

There were rough times but we forgave each other. She taught me that. She taught me to love without boundary. She taught me to see without limit. She gave me the confidence to be the man of someone’s dreams. She gave me the confidence to be a man.

Last night wasn’t a celebration of me and my birthday. It was an appreciation of the journey my mother started on this night, 27 years ago, that led to the following morning of her taking on a life. Taking on a life and nourishing it in every possible way. All that I was, all that I am, and all that I’ll ever be is because of her, my mama. I couldn’t be more blessed and comforted in knowing that at 27 years old, I am a product of her.

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