here’s what my life as a mother has consisted of – or the closest thing to my experience…TRUTH.
I saw Renee today; all grown up and covered in dark make-up, hair twisting down to her ass in shiny, sleek braids and tresses; she looked beautiful – sixteen and a half years old already and driving her father’s beat up old blue pick-up truck…
Renee and Boo used to be best friends for like – EVER, in the ‘hood. They went to different schools but played every day after homework was done, took each other on family trips and so on. By the time that Boo had to leave home in exchange for a “residential treatment facility” because of her increasingly unruly behavior, the girls had grown apart for the same reason: Renee is a tried and true “angel”, without a mean bone in her body; Boo is natural-born and rightful Hellraiser.
Seeing Renee today, so happy and full of life and promise and bright futures wide open to her, I have to confess I was stricken by some sort of jealousy or envy – CORRECTION – I was nearly consumed by it.
I spoke to her for a few minutes about her dad and dogs and whatever other things I could think up to say as I watched her eyes dart everywhere around us, looking for Boo – searching for Boo with so much hope and excitement barely contained behind her eyes. It always goes this way when I see one of Boo’s friends, or better yet: a parent of one her friends – someone who knows very little about me and my daughter’s trials and tribulations – someone ready to spit venomous and projected judgments at me,
I finally shot out my hand and grabbed Renee’s arm, surprising myself with my own sudden decision, and said,
“Renee, you and Boo might be totally different and worlds apart these days, but she’s been MIA on the run for almost 2 months and just found out that her father died; yeah – her father died, yeah, the one that’s been in prison – he died; she just returned from AWOL yesterday morning to hear that news, and…well, you know how she is…she could probably use a friend, a real friend right now…”
My eyes stared down at the concrete where we stood in front of the donut shop, my grasp still tight on her arm. Her response was almost immediate, and painfully sincere; she said,
“I love Boo and always will, but I guess it’s because of that, well that’s why it’s too hard to be friends with her…you know?…because she hates herself so much…”
I choked up, but covered it beautifully behind my dark sunglasses; I smiled down at her, my grip loosening slowly and gently, so as not to imply any offense or resentment towards her. “I know, Kiddo…” I said, “I understand…”
My entire existence feels quite strained and stretched past its own ability; my thoughts and feelings have been going through a change that’s so unprecedented and foreign to me, and my objectives in life have seemed to alter themselves as a result. I am going to once more, try to explain, try to describe, to convey in accuracy, my current state of being – without the fear of what someone else might think about it…because the need that I harbor for support and guidance always outweighs the shame and embarrassment….my desire for sanity balances out my habit for unhealthiness.
My only child, my daughter, age 16.5, has returned again as of late last night; she was picked up by the local police and then taken to the Emergency Room, as usual – from which, her tragic pattern has proven, she will leave once more and return to the world of Roulette, where she has chosen to live an insane life on her own.
It’s happened – finally…my heart and soul has gone cold and totally robotic towards her now…from so many years of preparing myself to lose her in a horrible, murderous way to some psychopath she’s willingly running around with; all of my tears, enough to fill the driest basin – for naught in the end. She has been dead to me for a short time now, I recognize – hence my current mourning period and the loss that I feel in every ounce of who I ever was. A genetic loss, a loss deeper than anything possible. A beautiful, delicate legacy, lost to the darkness of drug addiction and exploitation, trafficking and human madness.
So many many instances in which I have been the captive – a hostage to the absolutely appalling decisions made by others. It’s time for me to write this out loud, after all these years of chaos, of chasing a normalcy that was elusive, of fighting tooth and nail against the puppets staged to fight me – all while the invisible opponent slashed and cut at my heart from my womb.
How many times did I save you? How many of your “wolf!” cries did I answer and walk you out of safely? Each time, only to be spat on by you in the end, when you grew bored of normalcy and made the sale. You continue to cry “wolf!” so regularly, even still…unable to see that the effectiveness of its meaning has long left the repetitive noise it creates. Ineffectiveness is a state that is lost on time and effort; and it is a concept that has sadly and tragically come to define our relationship.
I can’t keep swinging back and forth like this – it will drive me as insane as the retched people my daughter lives amongst in the Nether-wastelands she seems to love so much.
Its as if, after helplessly watching her drown, unable to save her, and then, after finally accepting the defeat of losing her – I’m walking away to grieve her loss, only to be shocked by her sudden resurface and renewed plea for my help – help that she doesn’t really want at all. So goes the gut-wrenching cycle that no sooner is she is fitfully dragged to shore and renewed breath, the girl unfailingly belly-crawls herself back into the depths and sinks without a fight. Over and over and over and over.
My own brothers tell me to let her sink and move on…my own brothers!…
my therapist tells me the same thing! A therapist!
p style=”text-align:center;”>My heart tells me I can’t win, and that I am better just mourning the loss as if its real, because it is.
I think that I am slowly going insane – or something like it – day by day.
I say this because things have gotten fuzzy around the once sharp edges of life for me; details of each day that would’ve once mattered are unimportant and irrelevant to my moments now;
and that is what I live inside of these days, are moments.
Just moments at a time because that’s about all the sanity I have left to deal with my reality as it stands…which is an exceptionally unpleasant place.
If I allow myself to be the Me that I have always been – well, more like used to be – I will default to a bigger picture…planning ahead…the maintenance of control over my life’s general course whenever possible…reliability…stability…motivations and goals, etc. The evolved Me is unable to look beyond the next few minutes in life past the immediate and present tense; the evolved me lives paralyzed inside of a bubble that will inevitably burst. My life has gotten this way because my heart has opted to crawl out of my body and go its own way, one unknown to me. I still hear its beat, feel its pumping pulse in my veins; but my heart has left my body and vanished into the night.
The evolved me has adapted to be able to swallow the tragedies that I have lived – am still living – through.
The evolved Me is stuck on stupid, like somebody pushed pause or something and life just hasn’t continued to play right ever since.
AUTO-PILOT FUNCTION (AKA GOING THROUGH THE MOTIONS):
My laundry somehow gets removed from the dryer and folded/hung up/put away during these Pilot Performances of mine; I spend a disturbing amount of time in frustrated conniptions over “missing” tops and sweaters that my Auto Pilot has already put up, completely forgetting(?) that I had spent 35 minutes of the afternoon putting my clothes away…
The constant need for physically exhausting motion and extreme mental/psychological stimulation i.e. terrifyingly scary movies or swimming in the ocean during January (wtf?)
The detachment from all good and positive sources.
The chronic and debilitating malfunction of my ability to give a shit about much of anything besides what the fuck went so wrong with my daughter to cause her to CHOOSE such tragedy time and again…
The obsession with my failures and the rejection of my worth.
All in all, I guess I’m just very tired of being so afraid of my ringtone…
of waiting for the other shoe to drop on my head…
I just want my daughter safe; so badly do I want her to be okay that I’d give up either or both of my eyeballs to heal her and give her the security she needs, even if it’s not with me. I ‘d turn over every ounce of my own self-worth or self-esteem to her, gladly. It’s so hard for me to understand…it’s so hard to accept.