What Caused Him to Deny Himself
The car was filled with the smell of cigarettes.
My aunt is a very heavy smoker. The smell must have seeped into the seat.
I couldn’t help but frown at the smell, but she smoked her e-cigarette without a care in the world. She doesn’t seem to smoke paper cigarettes in the car, taking into account that she is driving.
Well, what I want her to be most concerned about is her passengers.
“… I’ll open the window.”
I said, and without waiting for permission, I pressed the switch. I opened the window and felt somewhat better.
Finally, my aunt realized that I hated smoking.
“Oh, I see. You don’t like the smell of cigarettes.”
“… You know, it’s hard to find someone who’s good with it…”
“I bet. Well, be patient…, I haven’t been sleeping much. I feel like I’m going to black out if I don’t take my nicotine.”
“Please don’t do that even if you are joking.”
I breathed. But my aunt just shrugged her shoulders and didn’t say anything more, it’s hard to tell if she’s joking or serious.
“… You know, if you smoke that much, it’s not good for your health, is it?”
“I know. I know the risks without being lectured by a little boy. In the meantime, I’ll make an effort to quit when the business is stable.”
“… Please do so.”
My aunt is quite a workaholic.
She only cares about her business and her career, and her health is secondary to that… I didn’t really like that about her.
She is not the only one.
My aunt’s sister, my mother, is a similar person.
She too is a person who puts work above all else.
It’s not that I don’t love her, but I didn’t like that part of her.
“Yeah, the business isn’t stable right now,… and our company, the one your parents run, is in shambles. Your mother is a real devil, forcing me to babysit for her when I’m so busy that it’s making me dizzy.”
“… I didn’t realize that.”
I know that my parents own a travel-related company. I also know that they have been traveling abroad to stabilize their business.
But I had never heard that it wasn’t going well.
“I know that my sister must be frustrated because of that. She yelled at me the other day when I told her you bought a phone.”
Laughing bitterly, my aunt puffed smoke.
Then she put down her e-cigarette and, operating the steering wheel, told me something like this.
“Stop playing around and get serious about your studies. You know it costs a lot to raise you, don’t you? Then work hard so that you can pay back the money as soon as possible.”
Perhaps, word for word, that is what my mother said.
My aunt seemed to realize that her words were unreasonable.
“It’s ridiculous. I think it’s wrong to begin with to think of risk and reward in parenting… That’s still your mother though. You’ll just have to give up thinking it was bad luck.”
I smiled as my aunt muttered this to me as if she were talking about something else.
“… She’s still the same as ever.”
Really, she never changes.
The first time in a long time, I thought she cared about me, but this is it.
My mother doesn’t care about how the child she gave birth to is feeling and growing…
She only cares about my status.
She is a person who can only look at things from that perspective.
How will I repay the cost of raising me in the future?
How will she recover the money she invested in me?
What kind of return can she expect for the risk she took in bringing me up?
That’s all she was interested in.
My mother was always like that.
No, I understand that this was “love” for her.
She tried to love me in some way, even if it was distorted. That’s why I also care about her.
At least, when I was a little kid, my mother was almost like a deity to me.
I wanted to be recognized by her, so I worked very hard. I did my best in my studies and athletics, just like she told me to do.
But I had no talent of any kind, and my grades were always in the lower ranks. My mother was disappointed in me.
‘I don’t expect anything more from you, so … well, good luck. At least, I hope you can be as good a human being.’
I still remember it well.
My mother’s eyes were heartbreakingly cold as she gave up all hope.
Looking back, I think that was the beginning of it all.
<I’m a person who can’t do anything.>
That was the first time I denied myself.
Since then, I have become a despicable person, unable to have confidence in myself.
I couldn’t affirm myself anymore… and as a result, I started to think of myself as a “mob character”.
In other words, my mother was the cause of my mob character.
Now that I became less involved in high school, and thanks to Shiho, I can affirm myself again,… I felt scared to be involved with her.
I don’t hate my mother.
But if you ask me if I am good with her or not, I can definitely say that I am not good with her.
That’s how distorted that person is.