Getting Close

Next weekend (June 2) is my daughter’s high school graduation. Last night was the Baccalaureate ceremony and year end awards. She received a couple of scholarships. In a class of 44 students I think they all ended up receiving at least one each.

The boys were so excited to see me. Both came running when I walked in to the gymnasium. I had one (and often both) of them on my knees for nearly the entire night. Between the Baccalaureate  ceremony and awards presentations they served cake and coffee and the boys made a spot for me to sit between them…it was nice.

Boy 1 really wanted to come home with me last night but it was already after 10 before the awards were done, it would have been after 11 before he got to sleep and he would have had to be up and out of my house by 6 if I was to drive him back to town for school and make it to work on time. I reassured him that I would pick him up early on Friday and that we get to spend three days together for the long weekend.

The Girl was happy to see me and I got many winks from the front of the room…and even one from her chair across the room when she did not get one of the scholarships she was really hoping for.

Unfortunately I am not at all involved in the planning of her graduation celebration. This was orchestrated by her and the ex. They have successfully ‘kicked me out’ of all of her graduation plans. I was surprised when I got the call from her on Monday that she wanted me at last nights’ ceremony.

One more week and it’s all over…she will have graduated, her party will be over, and life will go on. I pray that she can understand that the decisions she has made that I am respecting (as difficult as it is) are her doing. I am letting her make decisions about the time we spend together as well as holding her to earlier decisions. This has not been easy for me.

I love my kids more than anything in the world…I believe they know that. Today, that will have to be the blanket I wrap around my heart…that knowledge…my brain knows that they know how much I love them…today, my heart just misses them so much.

Worried

I wanted to post yesterday but just the thought of writing about all that is going on is difficult. It makes it real.

As a person who has dealt with mental health issues for many years, I understand, probably better than anybody else, just how sick my daughter is right now. I am doing everything IN MY POWER to get her the help she needs.

As a mom, my heart crumbles at the thought of my child being so sick and not being able to fix it for her. I can imagine it is how the parents of child, terminally ill with cancer, feel. Just as some of the cancers afflicting children are treatable, so is my daughter’s illness. I also know that it has the power to kill her at any moment.

I explain it to her in a way that reduces the stigma in her own mind: right now her brain is sick; very sick. There is a tumor that is trying to kill her and we need to treat it in hopes that one day a cure can be found.

The challenge is keeping her safe long enough to get her the treatment she needs to get stable. Finding the right treatment is like throwing darts…blindfolded…in a windstorm.

Today I am making the 250 mile round trip again to host the relapse prevention/early recovery class. I usually only do this every 5-6 weeks but they called on Monday and said they had a cancellation. They were very happy to have me coming back and I am so happy to be going back to the same group of people…it would be nice if I could do this every week…then at least we could follow a semi-curriculum and progress through a series of talks. Last week we discussed forgiveness and letting go. I think this week I will touch on expectations…their own and the people around them while talking of motivation.

Pray for me to have the strength as I continue to follow the path God leads me on.

God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change

The Courage to change the things I can, and

The Wisdom to know the difference…

 

If I’m Dreaming…

Image

My baby girl…so broken, so scared…so brave. I took this picture as we waited for the intake worker at the hospital on Wednesday.

My heart hurts tonight…so much…so much. I want my baby well, I want her whole, I want her happy.

I had a dream my life would be
So different from this hell I’m living
So different now from what it seemed
Now life has killed the dream I dreamed.

~from Les Miserables “I Dreamed a Dream”

Thankfully, I have not allowed life to kill the dream I dream. I still dream of growing old with a man who loves me for who I am, who gets me, who never wants me to be anything but my best. I dream of my children growing in to wonderful adults, partners, parents, grandparents. I dream they are able to find the happiness I thought I had. I pray every day that their happiness is a true happiness and not the illusion I was living in.

I keep thinking if I’m dreaming I wish somebody would wake me up…in reality though, I know that’s not what I want. We grow through our suffering. We change, we find our strength, we understand ourselves and hopefully we learn to understand others. We learn to accept ourselves at face value, no longer concerned about what others wish for us, or what others expect of us…just to be happy with being ourselves and understanding that we are exactly perfect just as we are.

God doesn’t make mistakes…I am perfectly as He planned me. I am living the life He set out before me, I am finally learning to live life on life’s terms and not my own.

Hang in there Miss B…mama’s right here, and I love you more than hockey…(well…maybe not MORE than hockey…) XOXO

My Hope

I was having a conversation with a friend this morning and we were talking about big upcoming events in the lives of our children. Boy 2 has a school event coming up, Girl is graduating from high school…BIG events.

Girl has had some major struggles with this divorce. She was put in the middle for a little while, then, when we got our heads out of asses that way, she began to insert herself where there was conflict, sometimes creating conflict when there was none. I think conflict was her comfort zone…even if her parents were fighting, at least they were talking. If they were fighting because of her, then that meant they were paying attention to her.

My relationship with her is very unique. We have always been extremely close. When we argue though…small nations shake with fear. We are loud, we are emotional, we always say we are sorry.

Through this divorce though, our relationship has taken on a new dynamic. She is extremely close with my ex-husband who is not her biological father. She has deep seeded abandonment issues surrounding her biological father. Her Issues lead her to lash out towards me when she is angry with him. This has led to her to push me away from her in a twisted attempt to show her allegiance to him. Due to her age and the current situation I am following her request. I have backed away.

When she reaches out, I reach back. Each time my hand gets bitten. So now, with guidance from professionals I am no longer reaching my hand out to get bit again. She is also learning some real big life lessons right now abut relationships and to be careful how hard you push people away as they may not come back at all. We have had this discussion MULTIPLE times in the office of her psychologist and deep down she understands it.

I am not attending her prom (as per her request) and my ‘mom heart’  aches like you couldn’t even imagine. I continue to look at the big picture, but it not easy. I see before me, a little girl who, when the time comes and she sees all the other girls with their mom’s, is going to be broken. I see a young woman who, when she graduates will wonder if I even care…or if this can even be fixed.

Of COURSE it can. My love for my kids will never stop…just as I’m so glad my mom’s never did for me. I’ve been that mad, angry teenager. I’ve felt alone with nowhere to go. I lashed out at my mom…I understand.

In a few years my ex may be able to see the damage he’s caused and the lives he is destroying…I just hope that the kids don’t end up hating him for it. My eight year old should NEVER have to be taught by the school counselor that it’s okay to say, “Dad, when you talk about Mom like that it hurts my feelings.” No child should ever need to use those words. His job is to be a kid…just a kid, not my protector. No child should EVER have to pledge allegiance to one parent or the other…by saying these things to his dad, he is pledging allegiance to me, if he doesn’t, he is pledging it to his dad. Why the hell should ANY kid, eight or nearly 18 be forced to choose? How big does your ego have to be to make a child choose you over the person you made them with? The person you, at least for some time, loved deeply enough to want to spend the rest of your life with, who you loved so much you wanted to bound to forever through children. I don’t get it.

I get the boys this weekend and cannot wait to spend some good time with them…we need it. The next time they visit I should be in my apartment. That will be super exciting. I am trying to decide between an air mattress or camp cots for their beds…I think I will let them decide. It will be a great ‘budget’ lesson as well. We started the ‘wants and needs’ conversation a while ago, now we can build on it…and with the proper guidance it can be so much fun.

I will set a ‘budget’ for new beds/blankets/etc and then let them browse through stores, take notes for them on prices…maybe take them to a consignment shop or two, a thrift store…they can learn how far their money can really go. And then, with whatever they have left over, that can go towards a vacation fund or an X-box fund. They are great negotiators. Yesterday when Boy 1 and I were in with the school counselor he said he was already thinking about the summer and that he was thinking that he would stay with me for one week and dad for one week  during his summer vacation. I told him that was a great idea and that I would also propose that.

I am so very proud of my kids. In the midst of turmoil and chaos, they continue to make me so very proud to be their mom.