The last time I saw my mother, I was in my mid-teens.

The last time I was supposed to see her, I didn't. Scheduling conflicts and miscommunication meant the meeting didn't happen. If it had, maybe that wouldn't have been 'the last time'. But I doubt it.

Given the age I was, I've been somewhat surprised that I don't have more memories of her. Given though that I was seven when I last spent any real time with her, it's not that surprising.

What I know about her could fill a single A4 page. And not even in that tiny scrawl one uses when they're trying to cram as many notes as they can on their exam “cheat sheet”. And perhaps it's not so much a page of notes as it is a short pro/con list, of her positive attributes or reasons why I should or shouldn't have positive feelings towards her.

Pro: She was a keen baker, would send me home with some of her enthusiastic efforts in the kitchen.

Con: She left my father and I when I was seven.

Pro: I probably inherited her grace and poise. But definitely hers and my father's skinny genes.

Con: Her only contact each year was a birthday card.

Pro: She once made my father very happy.

Con: She spread lies about him to cover for herself when she left.

Pro: She gave birth to me.

Con: Her persistent financial dependency.

Pro: That she hasn't personally tried to contact me.

Her absence and her actions used to leave me feeling a lot more fucked up than I am these days. On the whole, I think it's a giant 'pro' that I grew up under the tutelage of my father rather than her. So I guess I can thank her for that.