Monday, March 7, 2011

Through the good times AND the bad....right?

It has been one heck of a two weeks. And by that I mean it has not been all sunshine and roses. 

Cary and I have a strong bond, incredibly so actually. But, these past two weeks have been 
 strained. For all those who really know us,  you know that we love each other deeply and that we are pretty much polar opposites. 

  Cary is a laid-back, peace-making, calm fella who avoids confrontation at all costs. Me? Yeah, not so much.

Having been married to him 11  years (this month!) has helped me learn more patience and more laid-back-ness. yeah, i  make up words here and there I get my "hackles up" and am ready to go. I'm not proud of it, but that's the way I am. I guess I have a short fuse and my buttons get pushed quicker and more easily than Cary. Let me tell you, that's so not a great thing when you have a child (or children) who have attachment issues and transfer their frustration and anger to you. The completely logical side of my brain, I know, I'm surprised mine still works too, realizes that I should not take things personally. I hear it from Cary, the Therapist, friends, and family. But, when you are in the "heat of battle", it's hard to realize that it isn't completely personal.

These weeks have been hard. I've struggled. A lot. with kids, with Cary, with knowing if I can take it, with doubting my strength as a Mom, with everything, especially my oldest son.

My oldest boy has had a hard, difficult life. He had to grow up really quickly and was abused by older sisters. He's angry, really angry, still, at his birth mother. He has "women" issues. Every woman he knew in his former life treated him badly, ignored him, let him down, and abused him. All of these things I know. I realize that these are the roots of the problem. Why can't I remember this when he's taking out his anger and frustration....because it's on me.
I was reading the book, "Beyond Consequences, Logic, and Control" and this jumped out at me. Smacked me in the face, really. It's headed with the quote, " Revenge is a confession of pain".
..."Parents dealing with extreme behaviors from their children often find themselves empty, depleted, and hopeless. check, check, and check.  They begin to regret their decision to parent, they begin to feel completely incompetent, and they begin to hate their role as a parent. Ultimately, they may even reach the point of "it's either him or me that has to go". After years of living with a child who is unable to reciprocate respect, affection, and love parents go from being a lavish rain forest of love to an arid dry desert- hostile, angry, depleted." ..." "Parenting children with severe behaviors is not a simple job, yet it is a responsibility charged to us by God. It is a call to directly face our own worries, fears, and frustrations."

It's not easy to admit it to myself, or any of you for that matter but that paragraph sums up the past two weeks for me.  As he pushes and pushes, I retreat...from him...from Cary...from all of it. It's hard. But, I'm here. I'm still here.
 We have an amazing therapist and she is working with both of us through this difficult time.
And, through all of the bad, Cary has been there for me. My very own cheerleader. My very own rock.

My. very. own.

Heavenly Father did prepare us to take these children as our own. Personally, I'm not sure that he fully prepared me. But, I'm learning.
  We fasted yesterday. I fasted for me. for my son. for both of our hearts to be healed. Heavenly Father answers our prayers. I know this.  I know He loves us, we are both His children.

I'm ready for some good. Actually, I'm ready for some GREAT!


Amy C. said...

Thanks for your honesty. I admire you as a Mother. You are wonderful, and I am thankful your kids have such a wonderful women to be their Mom. It only going to get better and easier right? Good luck -I so don't want teenagers.

greg said...

Manda...what a sweet, honest post. I have no doubt in my mind that you were prepared in the pre-existence to care for and nurture these poor, empty souls. You are amazing my friend. You were sent her to be their angel...Don't ever forget that. Hugs to you :)

Dawna said...

Whoops! That was me above...sorry, I forgot to sign Greg out of the account before I posted.