Are We There Yet?
Not even close!
Waaaay back in the Fall, I wrote about how the next phase of life might be one of healing and moving forward through grief and struggle... and overcoming some shit.
And now, I'm sitting here in May, realizing that overcoming can be a really long journey. And a really painful one.
It's Mother's Day today and a few things went on in my head. One, which of my kids is going to scream at me that they hate me? Two, which of my kids isn't really going to be happy about talking to me at all? And three, I hope that I don't die before my little kids are out of elementary school so that they don't have to be the kids in the class making Mother's Day gifts for a mom they don't have.
Spoiler Alert, I knew the answers to the first two. And while it hurts my heart to be screamed at and ignored, I also know that these 2 boys are really struggling right now so the best thing I can do for them is to be calm and compassionate. We did ok today.
I don't know about the last one. My hope is that I will continue to get better or at least stay really stable for a long time yet. But it does make me even more grumpy towards Hallmark holiday days that celebrate only one small piece of a demographic. Mom's are great, don't get me wrong, but honestly, half of us don't even want to spend the day with our kids...
Alright, so I guess I'm sounding kind of cynical... except that I'm not really... I'm actually kind of excited how our day turned out.
It was a hard one by all accounts. Sunday's always are. Then we add a special event and the fact the K is looking forward to his birthday on Friday and the fact that I haven't been grocery shopping this week so there's no "good" food in the house...and we've got a recipe for a bad day.
There was the usual screaming, fighting and ignoring. But today we also had fits of rage and doses of trauma.
Brains with anxiety and ADHD have a hard time with processing anything that isn't part of the regular routine....at least the brains in our house do. So adding anything extra to a day that is already emotionally elevated, means an emotional explosion will happen.
Today's explosion resulted in a crack in the wall, slamming doors, screaming profanities and crying siblings.
But... and here's the exciting part... this days also had extra love, clear boundaries, laughter and a 13 km bike ride to chill out the little beings.
The healing journey that I believed was so imminent in the fall, has surely begun, but it is the slowest process....EVER! But, it is happening.
Are we there yet? Nope. Yet, this week we had some tough counselling sessions that got emotions stirred up... and we're working through that with way more grace than before. We've said "I love you" more times than "I hate you" and that's big, because kindness hasn't always been a thing.
So while I sit here and write, there's still a kid outside screaming at his brother and a teenager still upset in his room. But walking a journey of cancer and depression and anxiety and ADHD and PTSD and ODD is a REALLY HUGE undertaking. To think that the healing would happen overnight was not super realistic. But I can see it.
And while I'd still be ok if Mother's Day ceased to exist, I am eternally grateful for the kids that I have been gifted with, even on the days that I wish the gift came with a refundable receipt.
Life seems to be pretty complicated but a step forward is still a step in the right direction. So today, I will celebrate the wins of this day.... and also celebrate that I made it through... with a nice glass of red wine.
Today I will toast all the other moms out there who aren't there yet either. To all the moms having a shit time of things. To all the moms estranged from their kids. To all the moms burnt out and ready to give up. You're not alone on your journey... and together, we'll get there.