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Longing to Be Loved

By: Rekita Chenault

When the one that gave birth to you doesn’t want to provide the simple thing called love, that you need, that you crave, it’s traumatizing. No one should have to deal with not feeling loved, not being loved by their mom.  

Unfortunately, I have felt what it’s like. It feels like a hole in my heart that increases as time goes on. You don’t know what to really do with that feeling because no one can replace your mom.  

I remember when I would help my mom clean up the house, take care of my brothers and sister. She would say I’m the oldest and therefore, she really needed my help. I loved helping her in any way that I could.  

I remember when I experienced my first period. I was sixteen years old. Prior to experiencing it, I had watched an episode of “The Cosby Show” where Rudy had been surprised by getting her first period. She ran to her mom, Claire, and she helped her by going to the store and buying feminine products and some ice cream. Claire had a heart-to-heart conversation with Rudy that day, letting her know that what she was surprised by, was part of becoming a young woman. They watched a comedy movie, ate ice cream and Rudy was so relieved. Her Mom was right there to make everything alright.  

I remember thinking, that’s how it’s going to be once that happens to me.  

Boy, was I wrong. When I told my mom what had happened with my body, she just looked at me and said well, I believe you can handle this and continued to watch TV. My heart immediately sunk. I went to the bathroom and wrapped some tissue together to help form something that would suffice until I was able to get what I needed. I sat on the toilet and cried for about 30 mins thinking, Rudy’s Mom was so sweet and loving. Why wasn’t my mom like that with me? One of my cousins ended up coming over and got what I needed.  

I have so many memories of my mom being there physically, I could hear her, see her, but as far as emotionally, she wasn’t there. I felt like she hated me. She would only be nice to me when she needed me to do something for her. It was just a one-way relationship.  

As time went on, I started to embrace the fact that I was not going to have a mom that was there for me. She was just “there.” So, I started to think about what I could do with the hole I had in my heart. I had really great friends, but they couldn’t take my mom’s place. I decided that I was going to love myself, nurture myself every single moment. Even though I knew that it was going to be a challenge to navigate this life without the one that I thought would help me figure this thing called life out, I couldn’t allow myself to sink in that ocean of desperately seeking the love of a mom that didn’t love me.  

I started writing poetry to express how I was feeling, and it helped me to release that energy that would get me down at times. One of the poems I wrote went like this: 

I needed your love 

I needed your love 

You didn’t want to give it 

So, I stopped asking 

I started demanding 

That still didn’t work though 

Cause you didn’t want to give it, no 

The love of a mother 

Is what I was missing 

Sometimes I couldn’t think 

Couldn’t operate correctly 

Continuously reminded myself 

Up against all odds 

Love always prevails… 

©2022 Rekita Chenault 

The longing to be loved by my mom was once a heart wrenching, rollercoaster of emotions. Now, when I think about wanting from her, something she simply didn’t want to give to me, I feel peace, where there used to be so much pain.  

I can honestly say that even without her love, I have learned that I deserve to be loved. Simply because I continue to love, no matter what. 

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