They stood like that as they both shared their own tears, this was hard for the both of them. More especially Francie because she felt like she had failed as a mother. She just couldn’t imagine having to choose between her babies, she had done what she thought was best for Xeno, letting her see the world on her own and allowing her to be an adult. On the other hand she had held Xenia close, with her illness she just couldn’t imagine what her little girl would be subjected to out there.
But here she was, crying her lungs out because somehow Xenia had made her feel like she had failed as a mother.
‘I tried my baby, I really did.’ She cried some more holding on to Xeno who was not saying anything.
Hearing the conversation between her sister and her mother had stilled emotions in her, she grew up telling herself that her mother didn’t love her; that she loved Xenia more but now she realized that she had been wrong all the while.
‘Hush mother.’ She said rubbing her mother’s back as she cried some more Francie cried some more until she finally sobered up. She went to sit just at the edge of her bed, Xeno sat next to her.
They were both quiet, none of them not knowing what to say to the other. ‘Xeno.’ Francie began
Xeno looked at her mother.
‘Where do I begin?’ she asked as she tried to blink up the tears that were threatening to fall
‘From the middle, I will connect the beginning and the end.’ Xeno responded causing her mother to smile through the fallen tears
‘I am sorry I wasn’t present when you needed me, I am sorry I didn’t act like I loved you when I really did. I really do.’
Xeno allowed her tears to fall
‘I am sorry I wasn’t there to watch you graduate to each and every other grade, I am sorry I didn’t come for your career’s day each year, I am sorry I didn’t come to your sports tryouts or games. I am sorry I wasn’t there to help you do your homework. I am sorry I wasn’t the mother I was supposed to be.’ She apologized more tears falling
All that wasn’t important.’ Xeno said
She shook her head vigorously
‘I just wanted you to tell me that you loved me, I wanted you to look at me as your child and not an adult that you perceived me to be. I wanted you to ask me how my day was, to find out if I needed help with something. That is all I wanted mum, just that and nothing else.’
‘My baby.’ Her mother said looking at her with regret
‘I don’t blame you, Xnia needed you more than I did. She needed you to be present
in her life always.’
‘Baby don’t say that.’
Xeno stood up and walked around her room then turned to look at her mother ‘There is a point I hated you.’ She blurted out
‘What?’ her mother asked, shock registering on her face.
‘Yes mother, there is a time I hated you with every fiber in me. I wished for nothing but death to reach both you and Xenia because then maybe my life would be better. I hated God for making me your child, because how can he when you wouldn’t even love me one bit?’ she asked wiping the little tear that had formed at the corner of her eye
‘Don’t say that, never you say that. I love you both, you and Xenia.’ She said now on her feet as well
‘But you love Xenia more right?’ she asked with a raised eyebrow Francie didn’t respond
‘You don’t have to respond to that, I have already come to terms with that fact. You don’t have to try to make things work with me, I am already grown and the time I needed your motherly guidance is long gone.’ Xeno said with a straight face ‘Xeno.’
She moved closer to her mother and kissed her on the cheek.
‘I love you, even when I feel like hating you I can’t. By virtue of you being my mother I love you, I see myself a lot in you and I am sorry that we came at a time when you were supposed to be being a child. I am sorry we made you grow up faster than your age. I am sorry that we came as a pair, making you choose between us too. I wouldn’t wish that upon my worst enemy.’ Xeno said before kissing her cheek
‘Mother I am twenty, I have already learnt life’s lessons along the way and trust me if I ever need anything I will always ask you. So let’s not begin to pretend like we like each other. It will make things weird between us.’ She said and walked out
She had been through way too much, she could stand on her own; that she knew. She was about to head to her room but stopped half way and got into Xenia’s room with knocking then locked the door behind her.
‘What do you want?’ Xenia asked with her tear stained face ‘I see the crying party is still going on.’ Xeno mocked
‘If you have nothing better to do, I would suggest you leave my room.’ Xeno laughed
‘Of course I don’t want to be here, I just came to give you a piece of my mind.’ She said moving closer to where Xenia sat Xenia stood up as well
‘For twenty good years I have had to feel like the outsider in this house, for twenty years I have had to put up with thoughts that maybe my mother doesn’t love me all because she loved you better. And now that you have grown wings, you want to trash that love back to her face?’
‘Xeno the conversation I had with mum is none of your business.’
‘Oh, it is my business. It is my business because I accepted to be loved less because I thought you needed that love more and now instead of being the grateful child that you are; you decided to make me regret being second best?’
‘It was never my fault that you were loved less, I didn’t ask to be sick, I didn’t ask for any of you to treat me like you did.’
‘You should have died a long time ago, you should have been buried by now.’ ‘Oh, I will die but not before I can prove to you and the world that between us I am the stronger part of us.’
‘You? Strong?’ she asked pocking her forehead ‘Don’t you dare do that.’ Xenia yelled ‘Or what?’ she asked pocking her again
Xenia looked at Xeno with anger.
‘You say you are stronger, show me that you are.’ She said this time pushing her with her chest
Xenia grabbed her side lamp and hit Xeno’s head, harder than she intended. Xeno fell to the floor as blood oozed through where the lamp had hit
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