Publish date 16-06-2021

by Marco Grosseti

Mom got compliments from the teachers and couldn't believe it. She closed her eyes along with the call. And she started crying. She was at home because now everything is done remotely, even interviews with the school. She once she would have paid to be able to help but feel so ashamed in person. When you look down and you just want to disappear. Why does her son never sit in the classroom? Why does she beat other children? Yesterday she cried all afternoon again. Are you all right at home, lady?

Mom sat on the couch and breathed. There are times when the air is better. She that she knew of a new thing that she had seen in other people's eyes but that she had never felt inside her. She was in the house she rented and furnished with the finest things. They are used but look new. Without having to beg for the help, the reference, the guarantee of anyone. Mom breathed hard to fill her heart with the new flavor of that good air. She closed her eyes and she looked back. The war she ran away from in order not to have a bad end, while everything around her burned and she smelled of death. The father who unwillingly welcomed her back into her new life of her, but at 18 she showed her her door, she had grown up and it was time to make it alone. She was a guest and not a daughter. The man she clung to to escape her sadness, but who left her with only a new pain, a new loneliness, a new life inside her belly. Yours. The fear of her that she would take that little life that she was unable to take care of. Years in the community. Her first job. In the morning, in the afternoon, in the evening, at night. She always cleaning and fixing something, while someone helped her and was with you. That beautiful, strong and intelligent child. So agitated, restless and violent. So same as dad. The anger of school teachers of all levels, the scolding of other mothers for broken toys, marks and scars that filled their children's skin. Are you quite sure everything is fine at home, ma'am?

A new companion. Another abandonment, another betrayal. She was with you but was preparing the arrival of another woman. He was with you and in the meantime he bought the refrigerator, the sofa, the washing machine for the house where he would go to live with her and another child. To be alone again. With you. The possibility of changing schools. The strength to do it. Even if you know what you leave behind but you don't know what you find. Even if there at least they know how to get you. Even if there at least they know you. They know it. She almost no longer feels ashamed when every day she comes to pick you up and she gets full of insults and complaints. The obligation to move house. Even though she was great. Even if it was nice. Even if it was comfortable. She knew of family: the neighbor who gave you the fish on his return from the trip to the lake, the lady upstairs full of gifts and attention for her and for you.
Change with the fear of making mistakes again, because it seems that in life mom she doesn't know how to do anything else. Leave a void and hope that for once something beautiful comes to fill it. Put everything in boxes. Throw away what you no longer need. Knowing new roads where you will walk every day. No, it can't always go wrong.

Mom sits on the sofa and breathes, her heart is filled with that good air. So is this how people feel when they're okay? The trip has been long. The house is beautiful and large. More than before. You look at it. Proud of her and how strong she has been. Review the pieces of you and of herself that she has picked up from the ground countless times. Congratulations lady. Her son has become so peaceful. He is so sweet and smart. How good she was.

Mom opens her eyes, she looks out the window, the cars stopped at the traffic lights, the people leaving and entering the shops. She wonders where they are on their journey. Whether they have already arrived or are still in the midst of their adventure. Maybe they have yet to leave and they don't even know it. She sees the reflection of her face in the window. She thinks about everything you've been through and smiles. You know this air of peace. It must be that thing that everyone talked to her about and that she never understood. It is inside her house and inside her heart. She cries because she can't contain her. She hugs her and tastes her tears. They taste sweet and they taste good. That must be the taste of that thing that everyone had and you didn't. She made you so angry to see her in the eyes of other children and other mothers. Happiness.

Marco Grossetti
NP March 2021

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