How Did I Get Here?

Once upon a time, I was a single mom. I was 19 when I had my daughter and so not ready to be a mom but I was and all things considered I think I did a good job. Was I perfect? God no. I made mistakes, I know I did. I loved my daughter though and I worked hard (with the help of my mother) to make sure she had everything she needed. When I didn’t much help anymore my daughter and I were just fine. We didn’t have a lot but always had what we needed. I was hard on her but I don’t believe unreasonably so and my daughter would probably agree. This brings a question though.

What happened? How did my beautiful inteligent daughter go down the rabbit hole? How have I become a grandmother that is raising a child instead of spoiling her, filling her with sugar and sending her home to mommy? Did I fail so epically after all? Can only one person hold the blame? My daughter is a grown adult and she is the only person responsible for her actions but did I plant something in her to make her fail? Am I being to hard or not hard enough on myself?

How much good then is raising my granddaughter? I did the best I could and it didn’t take so will the second time around be the same, or does my granddaughter stand a better chance? What part of her mother and father will be a part of her? I pray not their addictive personalities. I pray that if it is there she can deal with it better than they have. I want her to be a happy child, a happy healthy adult.

Then there is me. I know people think I should be happy and loving raising this kid. I love her, I do not love raising another child. Think what you will of me but I had one child for a reason. I did NOT want another. My granddaughter does not suffer for this. As I said, I love her. She will not suffer for her parents other than missing them. Her heartache is not something I can make go away, I can only offer comfort when she misses her mama and can’t understand why she can’t “go home”. I am not one for sugar coating but I don’t think telling a toddler that her parents are drug addicts and can’t stay out of jail is really the way to go.

What do I tell her though? She is almost 5 now (she was 2 1/2 when I took her) and is very sharp with a memory like a steel trap. I honestly don’t know how to explain drug addiction to a small child. I’m afraid that I will come across to harsh which may not be as bad as it sounds now but still. I know that my daughter loves her ver much but I don’t understand how this little girl is not enough for her to get her shit together and it won’t be too long before my granddaughter thinks the very same thing.

When I started the process of guardianship, I had both her parents sign. Sadly her father was in jail when he signed and has been in and out ever since. My daughter signed because she knows I am better than CPS and foster care. On a side note, if my daughter ever climbs back out of the hole, if she can take care of herself and keep a job etc… I will gladly let her back into her daughter’s life. I don’t see it happening though. The only light at the end of that tunnel is a train.

I had plans ya know. I have a great job and the ability to retire at 55. I was going to retire at 55 and get the hell out of California. Now, well, I’m not so sure what I will be doing when I reach 55. My granddaughter will be between 8th and 9th grades and I will have to decide if working is my only option, best option, or if I can still retire and we move. Also, I have to get permission to move her out of state so there is not more freedom to do whatever anymore. That was (is) important to me. Again, think what you will. I don’t have to like how things are. The only thing that matters is how I handle how things. They are not the same thing and I don’t think they have to be.

I also have my mother to think of. She lives with me too. She will be 76 when I am 55. What do I with her? Because of my job I know how horrible the care facilities are in my area so moving would probably be an excellent idea but what if she can’t? She’s pretty spry now and I don’t see her not being even then but 9 years is a long time for things to happen to all of us right? Fuck, this is depressing.

I’m done for now. Anyone else out there? I can’t be the only person raising/caring for multi-generations.

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Fear For Naught

So Saturday was a week since I shaved my hair. Guess what? I was afraid for nothing.

First, we had so much fun and there was so much support from people that it was easy to get up in that chair. Second, during this past week the world has not stopped, people are the same, and I have even had some compliments on how I am “Rocking The Bald”. I have a nice round noggin turns out ūüôā

Now I can’t speak for what people think to themselves but as far as outward appearances and treatments go, I have not had any negative experiences at all. I believe that with social media, education, and well just the sad fact that there are few who have not been touched by cancer in some way (we all have friends/family that have fought the battle) people are less likely to judge now. I wonder if my gesture isn’t about 20 years to late? I think it is still important to show the solidarity and that should never change but I know that my experience has not been what all women have gone through in the past. They were true warriors.

I will do this again and if anyone is out there considering it but afraid….Don’t be. Do it!

Fear And Fundraising

Tomorrow is the St Baldrick’s Fundraiser for my area. Tomorrow I shave my hair off. I have raised right around $1500 and am very pleased with that number.

I have wanted to do this for some time now but have not had the courage to do it. Over the last month I have had reactions to my decision met with everything from “You’re crazy” to “I’m proud of you” to “You are so brave” etc…

The truth? I am not brave. I have been playing it cool but fact is I am terrified. I have nowhere near the confidence in myself that I pretend to have. At work I do, I am a damn good Dispatcher and I know it. Personally though, I am so much harder on myself than anyone else could ever be. I realize that I am not “un” attractive but I am not going to be gracing any magazine covers either. Shaving my hair is not going to do me any favors but I just feel compelled to do this. To do something that matters. To, if you will, be the person my dogs think I am.

I can now have a small inkling into what women and children with no choice must feel when they get to this point. There is fear, Fear of judgement, fear of too much attention (good and bad). Fear of whether or not friends and loved ones will treat them the same which is what they need to do or if they will back off or smother. And there are the jokes. I know those are coming too and those are what I dread the most. I hate them.

I am not brave, I just believe in doing the right thing and I know that the right thing is often painful. If I can do this though, I can do anything. No one can stop me but me. Yes I am doing this for me as well.

This needs to stop

Booksforever1blog. BarkUpToday! Claudia Bensimoun

“Now, under a plan supported by the Obama Administration, Wyoming is scheduled to open even more of their state to the unlimited killing of wolves starting March 1st. This means that between now and October, in a large portion of some of the best wolf habitat in the state, wolves can be killed at will.

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Image credit: Wiki

This is¬†especially tragic given that spring is denning season.¬†This expanded hunt puts the most vulnerable population of wolves ‚Äď pups and pregnant or nursing mothers ‚Äď in greater danger of being shot on sight.‚ÄĚ Defenders of Wildlife

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A Small Way To Help

March 16th is coming up pretty quick. On this day I will be participating in a fundraiser for childhood cancer research. I am going to have my hair shaved off!

 

The way I figure, whatever amount of money I raise is better than none and although I am really dreading having my hair shaved off because I am already way too self conscious, this is exactly why I feel the need to do it. I have a choice, I have my health. These incredible kids are stronger than most adults and they are owed such a great deal of respect and love. So, I will set aside my fears and insecurities for one small moment and think only what is truly important.

 

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For anyone interested learning about them here is their website: http://www.stbaldricks.org/

 

Better

Yesterday was two weeks in the new house. Things are better and I am happy to say the move was ¬†the right thing to do after all. I thought it would be but I wasn’t sure that it would be what I had in my mind. So far it has been and some things have even¬†exceeded¬†expectation.

The small space was a huge factor and I think we are both a bit more relaxed now. We both still have some unpacking to do but for the most part I think we are settling in fine.

The dogs have adjusted beautifully and Ryker has finally accepted Riley! This is where expectations have been exceeded. Of course they still have their moments but they run around the house together and Riley can come outside now and run around and he pays very little attention to her. Riley is a little instigator and she gets him riled up but this is to be expected. They are about the same level as she is 2 and is just about 3. They are quite funny together. I think we have to work harder now because before the move we just kept them separated now we have to follow them around and watch them but it is worth it for all the silly things that are now going on in the house. I think my prediction of them getting into trouble together is going to come true, they will be going in to “Time Out” together!

All that is left for me is to get out of the rut that I have allowed myself to live in for the past two years that mom has been with me. This is not going to happen overnight and but I am closer to feeling that I want it to happen than I have been in some time now. I need to go check out the track at the high school to and see if it will be good to take the dogs to and get to walking again.

Life is stressful but it is not bad. I am better off than I have ever been and I need to remind myself of this every day.

Make A Decision

I’m not sure exactly when it happened but somewhere down the line my mom decided that I have to be made aware of everything. She decided that I have to put my opinion in on things that have nothing to do with me. Why? Why do I have to hear about let alone comment on things that I care nothing about? Why do I have to be a decider on issues that are not mine to decide?

She is a grown woman for Christ sake that can make decisions all by herself.

I am tired of the going back and forth with she and my daughter as well. My mom called me just a little bit to let me know that she is following my daughter over to a tire shop so my daughter can get a tire replaced. Okay no problem but then she calls me back 10 minutes later to tell me that she is going to give my daughter her doughnut tire and she was all but asking me. Really? Why do I care? Why would have any say in this? Its your spare, its your decision to give it up not mine. If I had said no would she have changed her mind? Would she do it anyway (making asking me pointless)?

It seems that almost every day she is complaining about something my daughter says or does. My daughter is 24 years old and I do not agree with her life style at times either but there is no point in beating a dead horse. Move on mom, so I can move on! I never seem to have anything new to say so I don’t get on here often. My life is like a broken record with my mother constantly in the background chipping about the same crap.

What really gets me is that my attitude towards things is not new. My mother knows how I am and yet she insists on involving (or dragging) me into things that I care nothing about.

She is the one that tells me that my priorities are fucked up, that I am selfish etc… So why do you keep repeating yourself over and over? Why do you ask me questions you know I won’t answer? For Christ sake mom, you would be happier if you just stopped. I am 43 years old and I am not going to change. It wouldn’t be so bad if she was not still living with me but she is and I get it all the time and it is the same rants over and over again.

Pick a new record mom.

Its All Coming Together

So Monday is moving day. ¬†It took a long time to get this day but with all the delays in escrow I was afraid to give notice to my landlord before I got the keys in my hand and with having to give 30 day notice I have just taken my time and gotten things taken care of at my pace instead of rushing. I Have almost everything over at the new house and we will only be moving the big stuff I can’t move myself come Monday.

It has been such a long road to get here. It has been a roller coaster of mixed emotions and it has taken its toll emotinally I can’t lie. I still have not let go of the house I am in now either. I know I am only renting but I truly love this little house and am comfortable here. It is my castle so to speak.¬†

I will make my new house that as well. One room at a time, one project at a time. The true mixed emotion part is that my mom is still living with me. I would be much happier if I were going to this house alone. On the other hand, I would not have even considered buying a house if she were not here, if we did not need more room. Stressful or not I can’t deny that buying a house right now is a good thing. In this long process I have cleaned up my credit, have opportunities now that I have not had in the past and have more security.

I have said in the past that I am enjoying my 40’s and this is just proving me right. The 40’s are being good to me and I will gladly take what else comes my way. Good or bad, I can handle whatever comes my way with the wisdom and courage that comes with a little age and experience under your belt.

I am grateful for the people in my life. I don’t vocalize much, but I am. My family is not perfect but we are healthy and there for each other. I keep a small circle of friends that are also not perfect but we are there for each other however we can be. I have a great job that I love so¬†passionately and as always there are the dogs. I have these two Landsharks that just bring it all together for me. They make me truly happy, keep me on my toes, and are my world.

I am ready to continue this adventure even if there are days where I just want to scream.