My Inspiration

"O God, you are my God, earnestly I seek you; my soul thirsts for you, my body longs for you, in a dry and weary land where there is no water." Psalm 63:1 (NIV)

Sunday, February 28, 2010

I Am a Motherless Child

All my life I have felt like this - a Motherless Child. I have spent countless hours in therapy and thousands of dollars trying to come to grips with this. Over the past few years, I even reconciled myself to this and accepted my mother for who she was instead of who I thought she should be to me. I had found peace through my relationship with God and friends who supported me through things in my life when I should have had the love and support of my mother but it was not to be found.

I even tried to convince myself that my thoughts about my life were wrong. That all those feelings of not ever being good enough, years of being considered the "black sheep" and all those sarcastic barbs and put downs were just my imagination. The notes over the years ignoring the real issues in my life but reassuring me that she was praying for me, when I didn't need prayers but love and financial assistance, would have been better served as kindling for my fireplace but kept them because it was a connection to her. I have every card, note, letter and newspaper clipping she sent me. I gloss right over the frilly Hallmark cards filled with words expressing love and caring because I never believed them and zero in on the ones telling me she could care less what is happening in my home because it's between God and I, but she is praying for me. The last one coming at a time when I didn't have a pot to piss in, was a broken down wreck because my ex-husband had physically, mentally and verbally abused me and our 10 children but she couldn't be bothered with the details of that. It would have meant getting involved, showing she cared and well I now know she didn't not then and especially not now.

Yesterday my greatest fear was exposed to me in such a way that there is nothing that can convince me that everything I felt my entire life wasn't the truth. Yesterday my mother disowned me in such a way that there is nothing she can say that will ever erase the words from my mind or make me believe anything other than my truth.

"You are the lowest of the low. If this is how you treat FAMILY then I want nothing to do with you. We have decided to change our will. We will split everything between your siblings and leave you $1.00. No one asked you to take those children. You should have let them go into foster care, gotten them to support those kids and so on."

Those words and the rest of what she said to me will forever be etched in my brain. I spent the entire day yesterday in a fog. My head throbbed, my stomach knotted and rolled. I didn't eat. I was a zombie. I talked to friends, I talked to God. I ranted and raved to my husband, who heard the entire conversation. I awoke this morning pretty much feeling the same way and then I went to church and cried my eyes out to God. The one who has been with me through everything and has kept me from going over the edge time and time again.

What did I do to cause her to react like this ? Nothing. That is nothing to her. Nothing that she should have even had a say in but then my mother is her own woman and she picks and chooses when to be involved in her children's, grandchildren's and great grandchildren's lives.

My nephew and his wife had three children in three years. I am raising all three of those children. I have custody of the oldest but adopted the other two after they came to me and asked me if I wanted them because they were going to give them away. No one else in the family stepped up or even offered assistance but I took them because they are my FAMILY. All three children have issues of some sort due to the fact that their parents abused drugs, alcohol and each other during each of the pregnancies and that behavior still continues. I have not received any support for the children from them. As I adopted the two younger ones that was not an expectation regarding them. But the first child, the one I have custody of, is a whole other story. He constantly reminds me that she is their child, loudly, verbally, with great force and unkind words. Yet he has done nothing to support her because he's in and out of rehab and jail. She has been diagnosed with separation anxiety and adolescent bipolar disorder. A hell of a combination. We have been in therapy and we have a lot on our plates in handling her but we have not complained or asked ANYONE including my MOTHER for assistance. She prefers not to be involved remember... We max out of the insurance coverage for her treatment which is out of network and 40% out of our pocket after we meet the family deductible of $2,000.00. She can get Medicaid to cover her treatment once we max out if we apply but one of our requirements was to apply for child support from her parents before Medicaid would consider her case. So I filed the paperwork and they were notified. With all that said, it wasn't about the money and I seriously doubt we will see it but it was a step I had to take to get our child, that I have had and raised since she was six weeks old (when they called me and asked me to come and get her from a hotel room they were living in), the help she needs without going bankrupt in the process. Apparently he has split once again from his wife and he ran crying to his mother (my sister) who in turn ran back to my mother with his story of the blues. No one called or asked me anything but obviously assumed what he said was the gospel truth and I'm sticking it to him as a money hungry person.

So you see, the kids that no one asked me to take - they are her great grandchildren whom she says should have gone into the foster care system so that the state could pay for them. They are her FAMILY that she referring to. When is it the state's responsibility to take care of family? Part of her words in her rant was that "family takes care of family and doesn't try to tear each other down." I guess there is a double standard there that doesn't include me and my FAMILY. We have always been treated differently and torn down by her and her actions toward us. I guess she just hasn't noticed or doesn't care. And if you don't believe me then keep reading.

My children have never spent a night with my mother. They have never spent a day with her when I haven't been around. She has never interacted with them just because they are her grandchildren and she wants to have a relationship with them. She doesn't send them birthday cards or birthday presents consistently I can count the number of times she's done so on one hand. She did do Christmas for them but last year decided that since my 16 year old hadn't bothered to call her that she didn't deserve a Christmas present. My mother comes to Richmond at least once a week, passes by my street and never stops by and never calls. I have been in my house for 6 years, she has been here 5 or 6 times which is about the number of times, if not more, that she's been to my sister's house but she's only lived there a year. My nephew's oldest child lives down by my mother. She spends the night, stays for weeks at a time, travels with my parents and gets the treatment from her grandparents that every child wishes for. My sister (the kids grandmother, my nephew's mother) lives 3 miles away from me. We might see her once a month, if we are lucky, but she goes to my mom's to see or get her other grandchild (mentioned above) and lets her spend the night, takes her to the beach, etc. all the time... My mother goes up to Maryland (4 hours away) to see my other sister on a regular basis. Spends time with the new grandchild and does everything a grandmother should do but what she NEVER did with my children. They even drive out to Michigan to spend time with my brother's kids but remember my kids live 45 minutes away. I don't suppose I'm imagining the slight, do you???

The sad thing is that my kids have always felt the slight and I have tried to buffer them from it. Over the years they constantly commented on how Nana treated everyone else different from them and how she treats me different from my siblings and I've always made excuses and tried to deflect them from that thinking and reassuring them of her love. How dumb is that? What a joke. What a lie. What a life. For what? To let it all end like this?

Yesterday I became a motherless child. Something I will make sure my children never experience whether I live to see them grown or not, they will know that I was and I will be with them (through memories and in their hearts) loving them and supporting them forever.

1 comment:

  1. I am so sorry. I wish there was something I could say or do to make you feel better.
    What I will say is that you are somebody, a very special somebody. Not everyone could/would do what you did by the girls. They never feel like less than your child and are hurt when someone does. For all of this, God sees. And though it may always be our first notion to seek favor in others, it should be our first notion to seek favor in God and forsake all others. He sees, He knows, and He cares. This did not surprise Him. He has built you up your entire life so that your faith can bring you through.
    I am sending you an air hug.
    Love YOU cuz,