Updated: Apr 3
Name: Nikki Di Cunto
Age: 28 years old
Occupation: Registered Nurse & Founder of MDWMN
Location: Toronto, On
“I want to know you moved and breathed in the same world with me” - Scot Fitzgerald
How do you let go of someone who is still in reach? Someone who you can still hold tightly in your arms and tell them that you love them. This is something I have been struggling with for most of my adulthood.
Is it because I made the choice to let this person go? Is it because I sill love them?
It’s been two years now, maybe a little less or a little more. At times it feels like an eternity, others like it was yesterday. But, letting go of my Mom is something I will struggle with for the rest of my life. Truthfully, I think we let each other go. And, I know I’ll lose myself in the "what if’s" time and time again, but in order to find myself I’ve had to learn how to love her from a far. To accept that maybe we just don’t know how to love each other the way we need to be loved. To accept that people change. That fortunately, I’ve changed. That by learning to let her go I’ve been slowly been learning the process of how to choose myself first, which has allowed me to forgive myself for treating myself poorly.
For the years of binging and purging as a way to deal with the all the pain and the slow, but inevitable loss of her. As a way to gain back control in something I had ultimately lost all control of. And, if I am to be honest with myself and everyone else finding the courage to write this has even caused me to relapse. It is a painful reminder that our family began to unravel before it even began. And, as I got older the distance between us grew and our differences became more & more apparent. Sometimes, I wonder if that is why I have felt so unworthy and incapable of love at times? It is a painful reminder of the space you once filled that is now empty. An emptiness & darkness that I will continue to lose myself in because it is a space that belongs to you. And, only you. It's the kind of space that cannot be replaced.
The divorce was inevitable. How it unfolded was preventable. It never had to be this way but after so much hurt what are you to do? I know that she is suffering. I know that she is not well and it hurts me. But, the thing is either am I. I’ve offered to work on us. To get help. To go to therapy. To fight for our relationship. To fight for the mother-daughter relationship I believe that we could have. But, she attached a price to our relationship and walked away. She attached a price to her daughter; which for most is priceless. I wonder to myself sometimes what did I do wrong? But, I suppose it was a price you weren’t willing to pay or ready to pay because in my heart I want to believe that it doesn't come down to the financial price, but the mental and emotional price it will take for her and I to get to where we need. It's not easy or comfortable in any means, it's hard is an understatement.
People say that time heals everything, but I don't necessarily believe that. The days come and go and there are still days where I need her the most. Where I am just a sad little girl who needs her Mom and it doesn't hurt any less. To be honest, sometimes it hurts more. I wish I could remember the last time I saw you. What were you wearing? What did you smell like? Did you smile when I walked through the door? Were you happy, I mean really happy? Did we tell each other we loved each other? Did we embrace like it was the last time? Did we even care? I don't think either of us saw this coming. But, maybe one day when we are both strong enough we can find it in us to pick up all the pieces and fix whats been broken.
I still remember you told me you needed to work on yourself, that you hadn’t forgotten about me. If that is the case I hope you are well. I hope that is what you are doing because now I am trying my best to do the same. I’ve come to accept that there are questions I may never have the answers to. But, in order to move forward I have had to learn how to choose myself first. Choosing myself first has allowed me to redefine the meaning of love. To let go of all the heart break. The rejection; the worthlessness. To forgive our painful past. To move on & to leave the chaos behind. I’ve come to realize that maybe this is my journey. To learn how to let you go in order to find myself.
These portraits represents the woman that I am today. A woman I never knew existed. A woman my Mom does not know. A woman she may never know. A woman that I am done hiding from the world. A woman who is flat chested, with thick curly hair and DIY bangs. A woman that is by no means perfect but is proud and full of love - for the first time.