One thing that used to frustrate us the most about our mother was her obsession and hang-up over dates. I never quite understood why, for example, we were expected to behave a certain way on the anniversary of one’s death. Don’t we miss the person the same that day as we did the day before? As we will the day after?
However, October 18th is always a day that will always elicit a moment of somber reflection.
On this day 4 years ago, my sisters and I became wards of the state of North Carolina. That crisp October morning, we were summoned to a meeting that consisted of our parents, grandparents, family friends, social workers, counselors, psychiatrists, and school principals.
We entered that room with fears, doubts, and heartbreak, sure…but we went as a single unit:
Three as one.
United by a lifetime of hurt and violent chaos, but also by a fervent hope that somehow always managed to sing its quiet song amidst the storms we weathered…
But we left that meeting completely different people.
We were forced on yet another dark and winding path, but unlike the roads we had travelled in the past, this one split in three. We were all forced to navigate alone- stumbling along scared and blind- with no hope of getting back to where we started and no promise of an end.
We would never again be the same…