Archive for the ‘grandparents’ Tag

Chaos.   Leave a comment

I’m afraid of wind…and lightening…and tornados…and storms in general.  Lucky for me we’ve got all that going on in my part of the world today.  Yay.

It’s been a chaotic day so far.  The wind is gusting between 30 and 40 miles per hour around here and the neighborhood is a mess.  It also happens to be recycling day in the hood, so I spent around 20 minutes chasing all of our aluminum cans, cardboard boxes, empty milk cartons, and pretty much the entire contents of our overflowing recycling bin out of my neighbors’ yards.  You are welcome.

I didn’t realize everything was flying out of my recycling bin until the most inconvenient moment.  I was in the middle of giving my older son a bath when my little baby started crying to nurse, a bit ahead of schedule I might add.  Haha, yeah right, like they have a schedule. I removed my older son from his bath (against his mighty little will) and strapped a diaper around him and put him in his crib.  I then picked up my little baby and started to nurse him and looked out the window.  It was right at that moment that the wind picked up the aluminum cans out of my recycling bin and flung them into the air like a tornado had come through (very similar to the scene in Twister where the little aluminum censors flight into the tornado).  Shit.  What a mess.  Right at that moment, I also realized my mother-in-law had called wanting to drop off my needy nephew again for me to sit for a few hours.  OMG, could things get any more chaotic??  I finished nursing the little fella and apologized to my older son about leaving him in just a diaper…although he didn’t seem to care one bit.  He loves jumping in the crib, and was jumping like a mad man today.  I swear he was jumping higher than normal – perhaps less resistance without his clothes? 🙂

Anyway, outside I went armed with paper bags ready to clean up my mess.  There are things I know we recycled that I never found.  Sorry neighbors!  As I was running up the hill chasing Diet Mug Root Beer cans, I could feel the wind swirling all around me.  I thought to myself, holy shit, these last few minutes sure have been chaotic.  But, I made it through, picked up the recycling, dressed my older son and put him down for his nap, put my little baby down for his nap, and called my mother-in-law back who told me I was off the hook for babysitting today.  Thank.you.God.

I realized that my funny little morning and the little bit of chaos that ensued was NOTHING compared to the chaotic childhood I endured.  What’s more, I will not let my little ones endure the same chaotic environment I did.  I’ll protect them from the wind and rain no matter what I have to do.

If you read yesterday’s post, you know that my mom left me during my first year of life and cheated on my dad, and then my dad got her back by cheating on her during that same time period.  Obviously I do not have a personal recollection of the first couple of years of my life, but I know those stories because my dad and grandparents shared them with me.  One of the earliest memories I have is the birth of my brother.  I was five and he was adorable!  I vividly remember being in the hospital and giving him the little blue plastic elephant I had picked out for him.  I love my brother.  We had many years of not getting along and barely speaking, but he was there for me and tried his best to protect me during some very dark moments in my life.

After my brother was born, he became the center of attention and of course that was difficult for my five year old self.  However, you have to understand that I was not a bratty kid.  Despite feeling jealous, I still loved my brother, wanted to play with him all the time, helped take care of him, and would have snuggled with him all day if I could have.  But, my mother wouldn’t let me. In fact, it seemed she didn’t want me anywhere near my brother or her.  Most of my vivid memories start when I was around 7 or 8 years old and my brother was 2 to 3.  When we would visit with my grandparents, my mom wouldn’t allow me to speak.  If we were sitting around the dinner table and I said something, I got kicked under the table.  And this happened a lot.  At Thanksgiving, I would be taken to a back room at my grandparent’s house and slapped because I had too much food on my plate and I talked too much during dinner.  However, the whole time, my brother talked and threw food and had a great time, and my mom ate all of it up.  She never treated my brother like that – he could do no wrong.  At that time, I didn’t understand why she acted like that but I do now which I will share at a later time.  I was a good kid.  I kept my room clean, did well in school (always got gold stickers and honor roll).  I did get a bad conduct grade a few times for talking too much in class, but now I realize I talked so much at school because no one kicked me under the table there.

My mom treated me like that no matter where we were.  She would always take me to some back room and beat the shit out of me for talking too much, eating too much, and breathing loudly.  (PS – I was never an overweight kid, so am still not understanding why she beat me for eating.)  She would bring my dad in on it too and he would get in on the beating if necessary.  Pretty shitty, but there are some funny parts to it, too.  My parents thought that no one knew what they were doing, but my grandparents’ houses weren’t that big, so everyone there heard what was going on.  And, my mom accidentally kicked other family members a few times under the table which of course sparked a little conversation about why.  I always loved watching her squirm when being questioned about the way she treated me.  She of course would always make up some bullshit about how bad I was, but the only person that ever really believed her was my dad.  My grandparents knew better – they were not fools.  That is why whenever my brother and I got to spend a few days with them during the summer, they treated me like gold.  I LOVED spend time with my grandparents without my parents.  Those are the happiest memories I have of my childhood.  I ugly cried during the car ride home every time….to the point where my grandmother would cry.  My brother and I would beg my granddaddy to turn the car around, to not take that dreaded exit on I95 toward our house.  I remember praying to the good Lord that one day granddaddy would turn the car around…that one day all our begging would finally make him do it.  But, he never did.

I have one memory of when I was about 10 years old where I had just come home from a week-long stay with my great-grandparents.  It was wonderful.  They took me out to eat, took me on their boat, we picked vegetables together in the garden, my great-grandmother and I stayed up late and watched movies, and they loved me.  I craved so much love when I was with my grandparents and great-grandparents, and they wrapped me in as much love as they could.  After that wonderful week, I remember laying on my bed trying to sob as quietly as I could so no one would hear me.  I was absolutely devastated to be back home.  I pushed my face as far into the bed as I could.  I can still feel the wetness of the tears on my face and my heart hurts thinking about it.  I cried so hard my face and throat hurt.  I even remember the commercial that was on my little tv when my mom came in the room to yell at me after she heard me crying.  (A commercial for windows – white house with lots of new windows across the front.)  My mom came in and asked me what the hell was wrong with me and I told her nothing.  Her voice got louder and she continued asking me what was wrong, so I told her the truth – I was sad to be home and missed my great-grandparents.  Then, she told me I could go live with them  if I wanted to and that I was an ungrateful bitch.  Then she slammed the door.

See, by that time, she had witnessed me crying after coming back home…several times.  She knew in her heart I hated living there, and she knew why.  She knew she abused me and treated me much different from my brother, yet she could not change her ways.  It was a vicious cycle.  She would get so mad when she saw how sad I was to be home, but she knew why I was sad.  Me being sad would make her even more angry though, and then she would come at me with even more fervor – both with her hands and her words.

But, I still loved her.  I still love her now despite the horrid things she did to me when I was little older (between the ages of 8 and 14).  I still made her cards for Mother’s Day and fixed her breakfast if I woke up before she did.  I made her Christmas presents and birthday cards.  I sucked up to her.  I know now that my little childhood self was doing everything I could to gain her approval and make the beatings, kickings, slappings, etc. stop, but my efforts seemed to go unnoticed.

More to come later…  Writing just about these few memories I have of those earlier years has helped me already.  In the thick of it, I get mad at my mom all over again, but at the end of the paragraph, I sort of feel a release.  And that’s what I plan to continue doing – remembering what I want to forget, so I can let it go.

Have a great day all!

All the best,

Someone’s mom

Break the cycle.   Leave a comment

Today has been a good day.  We had some visitors  today and my older son had a great time playing with them.  While he and my little baby were napping this afternoon, my husband and I worked more on his big boy room…hanging pictures, moving his things in from the nursery.  It’s really coming along and it makes me a little sad.  I still remember the very weekend my husband painted the nursery.  Afterall, it was only a little more than a year and a half ago…and now another kid is moving into it.  It is slightly shocking.  I never would have imagined that day that he painted the nursery that less than two years later we’d have another baby boy waiting in line to use it.

Speaking of flashing back, I often go back to the day that we announced our first son’s name at our co-ed baby party we had about a month before my due date.  It was a surreal moment.  Even though I knew there was a baby boy in there and we had already named in, I had not connected with him and couldn’t fathom what life would be like when he was a part of our family.  Now I can’t get enough of him.  Tonight at dinner, my husband accidentally (or perhaps intentionally) let out a pretty sizable poot, and my older son proudly exclaimed “poo pood!”  I literally choked on my food and my husband almost choked on his drink.  It was one of the best moments we’ve had as a family.  My son has already been letting us know whenever he poos by announcing “I pood”  Man, we are proud.  I never thought I’d see the day when I’d be proud of someone for announcing that they shit their pants.  I love parenthood.

I’m looking forward to hundreds, hopefully thousands, more moments like we had tonight.  But, in order to ensure I have those moments, I have to break the cycle…

See, there are a few reasons I started this blog.  One, to help me out with some areas in my life that I’m challenged with – mainly my pessimism and the stress I put on myself by constantly worrying.  Two , to connect with other parents and share advice, funny moments, and talk about life.  And three, to help me come to terms with the abuse I experienced as a child.  I realize I could keep a private journal or see a therapist, but I’m not a Dear Diary kind of girl and I’m not that interested in talking to a stranger about my issues.  I know that sounds funny since I’m writing a blog anonymously and sharing it with people I’ve never met…I totally get that that’s weird.  But, I’m ok with that.

I come from a divorced family…like most of us these days.  My parents divorced when I was 14 years old, and although it was a horrible experience at the time, it was the best thing that could have ever happened to me.  I come from an abusive home, and am a product of two people who I believe never really loved each other.

My parents got married at 18 years old.  My dad had a scholarship to a local university, and instead of taking that scholarship and earning a degree, he chose to marry my mom.  In knowing my mother and how manipulative she is, I firmly believe that she manipulated my dad into getting married instead of going to college.  I know that my dad could have made his own choices and I don’t think he was forced to walk down the aisle at gun point, but there had to be some reason why he threw away that scholarship.  Perhaps the pregnant card?  I’ll probably never know, but I am certain that they never truly loved each other.   My mom never had any college ambitions, and coming from a broken home herself, she wanted to get away and be taken care of.  I can’t say I blame her.  She too comes from a pretty f-d up situation.  Her mother left my mom, her little brother, and their dad when they were very young children, and ran around with several different men for many years.  She was basically the town whore and my mom and her brother knew it and heard it being talked about.  My grandmother left her children with their dad, who really didn’t want much to do with them either.  He then in turn asked his own parents to raise his children. WTF.  So, my mom and her brother were raised by her paternal grandparents…who were saints.

Flash forward several years later when I was born.  Just a couple of months after, my own mother left me in my crib while my dad was working a 24 hour shift.  She ran around town for a week with a guy and had apparently decided that parenting me was way too much to deal with.  My dad called in reinforcements and had his parents help out.  He begged and pleaded my mother to come back  and she did.  Not long after, my dad  cheated on my mom to get revenge, and they repeated this cycle for approximately 14 years.

In the early 90s, we moved from to a new town and bought a bigger house.  My mom had to work to help pay the bills.  She found a job she liked, had a little spending money of her own, and discovered some independence she had been missing for a few years.  This soon led to a new love interest in her life.  She had a public affair (we come from a small town, so any affair is public), and my brother and I watched it all unfold right before our very eyes.  We even met the man before my dad ever knew about him.  He was supposedly a man of God, and yes, this affair happened on the grounds of a Baptist church.  Once dad found out about him, he still begged my mom to stay, but she jumped ship, and for eight years, my brother and I did not have a relationship with her.  I honestly thought I’d never see her again, and after a couple of years I began to get comfortable with the idea.

My dad brought in his reinforcements again and my grandparents raised my brother and I for about two years until my grandfather was diagnosed with colon cancer.  They were wonderful and I owe my life to them.  More specifically, I will never know a more giving person than my grandfather…ever.  He unselfishly gave of his time, the little bit of money that he made, and all the love in the world.  He taught me how to play poker, how to drive, how to fish, and how to love.  I am a decent driver, an ok fisherwoman, and a beach lover because of him.  I can forgive people because of him.  I am who I am because of him.  I lost my grandfather a few years ago to lung cancer, and I miss him every day.  I am reminded of his presence every day when I put on my engagement ring, which is a story I will save for later.

After my grandparents left so my granddaddy could fight his cancer, my dad then found his own independence…and several women.  Now my dad was the talk of the town.  Super fun for my brother and I in the small town we lived in.

So, there you have it.  This is a very small glimpse of the various chapters in my life that I’d like to forget, but know I need to remember so I can let them go.

There is a common theme flowing through my family – abandonment.  And it appears to happen only after children are thrown into the mix.  So now it’s on my shoulders to break the cycle.  And, I will stop at nothing to do that.

I look forward to writing about these chapters.  There are a lot of details I do not want to relive, that I have buried deep down, that I’ve only shared with my husband and one or two other people, and I truly think it’s going to feel good to get them out on paper..or I guess I should say on the internet…  My parents should have never married, or procreated.  And now, 4 marriages and several ex-step siblings and broken families later, I plan to share all of the sad details why.

Thank you for reading.  It’s crazy how therapeutic it is knowing I’m sharing with an audience of strangers.  I guess that means I don’t have to hold back, right?

Well, it’s off to bed. Only one week of maternity leave left with my precious boys.  I would give my left leg to have another 12 weeks with them.

Good night, sweet dreams!

All the best,

Someone’s mom