On a good day, parenting will test the integrity of your character. On a bad day, parenting will test your will to live. Parenting children with trauma histories will cause you to test the integrity of everything and everyone you thought you knew, for the rest of your life.
~J. Skrobisz

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Fly Away With You

I've cried myself to sleep the past two nights so I thought tonight I would try something different.  I watched a movie with the kids while I gave myself a mani/pedi.  I put on my nightie and went to the bed and...right.  Three loads of unfolded laundry on top of a stripped bed, chores I intended to get to earlier today but which were, as with any other day, forgotten in the melee and craziness of a day with challenged kids and leaving my home every Monday and Wednesday evening while the children visit with their father.  So, seeing the bed piled high with untended responsibilities I did what any sensible 39 year old single mom does.  I popped the top of a hard cider, turned on the latest ColdP1ay CD, a gift from a long time reader and FB friend and decided I needed to blog.

I mean, I COULD be lying on top of the bare bed and the clean laundry to cry myself to sleep again but there is the conundrum of having to rewash three loads because of the snot and tear riddled mess I would make.  And let's be honest, who wants to do THAT?  *holds up cider* Cheers.

Mondays and Wednesdays I usually spend with my friend, Cinch (here in the blogosphere) and her hubby , eating and dashing home.  Tonight she was teaching and C~, her German exchange student, returned home last Tuesday so I cooked for family friends who have endured their own ridiculous heart ache the past few months.  I liked the change of atmosphere.  I like cooking for other people and filling tummies with yumminess.  It's a simple thing but it has always felt like love to me.  Eating together, talking, laughing, drinking, smacking lips, washing dishes.  So much happens in the kitchen of a home, it is where families are made or broken. The kitchen of a home tells the most about what really happens behind closed doors.  As much as my life has bent and twisted and landed me on my ass time and time again, whatever home I have occupied as an adult has been where my heart and soul is.  I like my kitchen, my table, my home.  I haven't always been able to say that. 

As I drove home this evening, I reflected on how much this life has changed me.  Some for good, some for bad.  Do I like who I am now?  Yes.  I love myself very much.  I love how strong I have become, I love my power and my smile, my laugh and my tears.  I love my confidence and my wisdom, my wit and my humor.  I am one cool broad.  Do others think that?  Some would say yes, indubitably.  Others, who knew me before this painful life odyssey morphed me into a sometimes caustic, often foul-mouthed, always sarcastic, occasionally bitter, seemingly aloof, red wine savoring, dance-in-the-moonlight, incense-burning, trampoline jumping, horse-loving, fire-poi spinning, hippie zen goddess of love and light would shake their heads in bewilderment.  What on earth happened to Jennie? 

Old Jennie wasn't the real one, as it turns out.  This me?  The me sitting here, fighting tears, wearing a neglige for no one but myself because I like to look pretty, blogging the truth of my life in its rare, untethered ugliness is the real me.  I slowed to a stop at a traffic light, my new brakes stopping the van gently after so many months of grinding halts, I harrumphed and nodded my head.  Av1cii sang to me.  I rolled down the windows, cut the AC and turned it up.  The light changed and I made a left turn, my left hand hanging out the window, waving gently to the rhythm of the song, I sang along.  Then hit repeat when the song ended because, like all songs, if you let them be, it was an oracle, singing the thoughts of my head and heart. 

Where does the body hurt?  What does it tell me needs to heal?  Yesterday it felt like I was wearing a metal brace around my entire abdomen, chest and back; a metal casing preventing deep breaths and fullness, relaxation and acceptance.  Several weeks ago Sissy made a claim to the bus aide on the way to school that I was abusive.  As a result, on Monday, the county social services sent out a case worker to do an investigation.  Now, in my head, I know that I won't be charged with anything but oh, what a bitter pill to swallow.  After all the abuse and heartache, pain, the hearing loss I now have, the anxiety that has me taking a daily pill for the rest of my life, the incompetence of Sissy's current agent working her case, the lack of resources for my family, my inability to be in public for long periods of time, the toll on my body and mind 24/7 and I am the one being investigated for abuse.  It hurts.  All over my body.  You could have cut off my limbs and I wouldn't have known it.  The burden weighing on my shoulders, metaphorically crushing my spine so that my body metaphysically created a brace support system that felt like it was suffocating me, that pain doesn't just go away.

My friends, so lovingly helping with the gofundme campaign.  I am speechlessly overwhelmed but I can't bring myself to emote.  I'm not ungrateful, it's just that the money raised is already spent and there will always be more need.  Yesterday, AB's psychiatrist said, "They will both always be in your care, you know this, right?"  I nodded my head.  "Sissy.  She is your biggest burden.  I'm really worried about you dealing with her. How is it going selling the house and finding a job?"  I held back tears and bit my lip.  Because it's not going.  I'm not going.  My life isn't changing, moving, morphing with me.  It's not.

A gofundme campaign is so amazing.  I should be bouncing off the walls in joy and laughter but not five hours after the campaign went live, I was getting the call from social services about the investigation.  So that's why.  That's why I can't trust, I can't be happy, I can't dance or sing or be amazed.  There will always be sorrow and pain chasing away the love and light.  There will always be me, by myself, struggling to make it all work, putting on a cheerful face, laughing through the pain, staying positive despite it all, serving others because it's what makes ME happy, cooking, cleaning, riding horses, burning incense, blogging, texting friends when i fall apart, wiping my tears on my pillow every night while I wear lovely nighties - wishing, hoping, but no.  Not dreaming anymore.  What's the point? 

Sissy and AB will always need care.  No one will join this burden with me.  Hell, I don't want it.  I will be alone with them.  Stuck.  Wishing I could fly away but being too stubborn to shake it off.  Watching others move on to their happiness and doing everything in my power to be really happy for them because i don't want others to hurt or carry burdens too.  But what about me?  Flocks of birds fly away with the wind as they choose.  They pair up, some for life, no struggles, no worries. Eat a worm or drink some nectar.  Snuggle in a nest of straw and hair, sing lovely songs.  I get to watch.  That is all.  That is all it will ever be. 

So...I will finish my hard cider, fold three loads of laundry, put clean sheets on my bed, get into it alone, cry until the tears run out and do it all again tomorrow.  By myself.  With all the temerity and strength, love and light I put into it today.  All day.  Every day.  And once in a while, I will imagine what it would be like to fly away with you.

I know I posted it already, but will you please consider helping, donating, passing it on, sharing the link, pin it, tweet it, whatever suits your fancy.  Thanks.

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