Southern Comfort

I spent the last 5 days in the South. Not L.A. as many Californians refer to as the south – the real South – Mississippi. I lived in the ‘Sip  most of my life and this time I had one of those moments that Oprah has made notable, an “aha moment”.  I spent several days trying to understand why my mother acts the way she does.  She can be incredibly wonderful, giving and beautiful and then at the very next breath she can be mean, spiteful and ugly on the inside.  My brothers and sisters and I have analyzed it to the inth degree for years. Trying to figure out how to make our mother happy and proud of us and comfortable in her own skin.  As we grow older it is harder and harder to perform these amazing jumping through hoop tricks just to try to make her happy. From all of the years that I have been in existence I have come to the conclusion that she is who she is.  I am grateful that she gave me and my brothers and sister life and a warm place to be and love and attention and a good family structure.  I know now how difficult that had to be because my father left her when I was 13 and moved to another state to take a job. My brothers and sisters and I were one of the few households in the 70’s whose parents were not together. We pulled through with only a few minor glitches in our systems the one that remains as a thin cord in our lives is addiction. Each one of us is addicted to something and even though we may no longer practice the addiction it is still on the inside and we just have learned how to manage it and overcome it. Perhaps this is a sign that we needed something to comfort us through the childhood/teen/adult life we have been called to live.

In Mississippi the people who live there accept my mother and those like her with open arms. They realize that people are people and we are all a collection of our experiences. It is comfortable to be in a room full of people who really do care about you and will go out of their way to help you regardless of what you may say to them. That is unselfish and that is presently uncomfortable for me to do.  These are the same people who have dealt with Katrina and now they are dealing with BP and the oil spill. Not once did I hear anyone complain. You see my people fish in streams and lakes and not on the coast. At least for a while they can still catch their fish and crabs without any worry about the oil.

I will work it out and attain that level of southern comfort before I retire at 55.

Yolande Barial
Your Words Project: Speaking on Purpose
Seeks to Enrich the Lives of Women through Spoken and Written Word.

“Through her inspirational writings and spiritual poetry, Yolande Barial empowers all sisters, young and seasoned, to become on-purpose for themselves.”


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