Whenever I dream of my Mother it's always so real. They always start with me being like "maybe she didn't die, maybe that was just a bad dream", because I want that to be the reality more than anything, that July 21st 2008 was just a bad dream. That I can see my Mom every day, and that our only interactions are in dreams, or as I like to call them; visits.
Last week's visit was different in the case that I went seeking my Mom and not her coming to me. I was in my apartment, it's the downstairs of my Dad's house. I heard my Mom come home from work, I went to the door that goes up stairs and I asked her come down to look at what I had added to my apartment. I showed my Mom my Han Solo shower curtain, the Beverly Hills 90210 poster I have framed above my TV, my new Star Wars merch and light saber. I woke up before I could show her my podcast room, or as I call it "The ManChild Studio". Not that my Mother would care about my 4 wrestling belts that are in there.
I don't know why I wanted to show my Mom all this stuff, she wouldn't like any of it lol. I've always been a Momma's Boy, and proud of it. It's only as I get older I become more of a man child. But then I think, am I just becoming this or maybe I just never stopped liking the things I grew up on. Star Wars, wrestling, 90210, these things all bring me to a place when I felt everything was ok, and I guess in my dream I wanted my Mom to tell me that it's ok to be like this, ok to like the things I like.
I would always seek my Mom's approval on things; her validation meant the world to me, like most Mommas' Boys. Like most son's, they want their Mom to be proud of them. That is something that I wrestle with every day, if she would be proud of me. I am the first to admit I don't do things conventionally, and things haven't gone the way I planned. So I always ask myself if my Mom was here, would she be proud of me.
Of course I would like to say yes but most times I'm not sure, and that is 100% on me. I know I must frustrate the shit out of my parents and family. Since 2010 I've haven't been able to hold down a job, been broke, and the only thing that really holds me together from completely falling apart is comedy. My Mom was diagnosed with cancer on September 8th 2007; I think my digression started that day, my life as I knew it was over, things would never be the same. I wanted to be strong, I wanted to be someone my family could count on but I crumbled, I checked out, I wasn't the same. I was letting everyone down and I couldn't get out of my own way.
As the months went on and I was trying to come to grips that my Mom wasn't going to be here much longer I wanted to tell her how much she means to and me and how much I love her, and how scared I was about what my life would be without her in it. I chickened out every time, I would go into her room to tell her, or stay home from work to spend time and tell her but it was too hard for me, and is now something I regret and carry a lot of guilt about. Probably something I should talk to a professional about instead of eating my feelings and writing a blog but I've never done things the easy way.
My Mom never had the chance to see me perform stand-up comedy, and I think that besides from the fact that I love it more than anything, it's one of the reasons I keep going at it, it drives me. I wish that just once I could look down from the stage and see her laughing, like she use to when I would imitate her in front of her friends and our family. Maybe though if she was here I never would have started, I don't know. All I know is that she isn't here and if she would really be proud of me. In my dreams I have about her she seems like she is and everyone always tells me she would be.
I do believe in an afterlife and that the dead give us signs to let us know they are still there, long before my Mom was gone I believed this. The other night after a show I did at a local club I went to the bar after the show, a woman came up to me and said she was battling breast cancer and that I made her laugh and made it that much easier for her. When I hear things like that it means the world, worth it all. Before she left she gave me a big hug and said "Your Mother is very proud of you". I never mentioned on stage that she is gone or mention her at all. Most people would say it's a coincidence that she had too much to drink. As I'm saying good night to the people, the last woman who was leaving the show came up to me and said "Your Mother is proud of you".
It's something I will feel guilt and regret over for the rest of my life, and I will treasure each dream that my Mom comes and visits me, and from day to day I question how she would feel about me and the bad / good choices I've made. What gets me through it is the random signs, real or not, that my Mom is looking down on me and proud I've finally found something that makes me happy. I don't want kids, or really to get married, I don't want to be the vice president of Pencil Sharpener Inc., I just want to tell jokes and make people laugh. It's hard for me that my Mom has never been able to sit in the room and watch a show, but I take comfort that she hasn't missed one yet, and that maybe she has the best seat in the house.