Monday, May 14, 2012

A Painful Mother's Day

The majority of this blog has always dealt with the struggle of attachment parenting and fibromyalgia, with a bit of other things thrown in to dabble in.  Tonight I'm just going to let it all hang out.  No more lying to myself about the positives and the hopes I hold out.  I have no more hope, or it's very thin.

It is currently 2:54 a.m. on Monday, May 14th.  Yesterday was Mother's Day.  My mother's day "gift", should you call it that, from my son consisted of being thrown a card that hit me in the gut as he screamed, "Happy Mother's Day...there you go!"  When I said "No, I don't want a card that is given to me that way," fast forward fifteen minutes to where he tore it into tiny pieces in front of my, threw it in the trash and said, "There you go, Mom.  Happy Mother's Day."

Backing up, in all fairness, I have his therapist to thank for some of this.  She told my mother, in front of him, that he shouldn't be taking his medication at 3 p.m.  because it's a stimulant and is causing him to stay up at night.  Bullshit.  I live with the kid and I know the "stimulant" has an eight hour life and should wear off by eleven at the latest.  So now I have a manic kid who hasn't been medicated in three days.  Thank you, therapist.

When I started this blog, I was convinced my child's biggest struggle was attachment disorder.  Over time, that has morphed into a very clear struggle with bipolar disorder in addition to attachment disorder.  At 2:30 this morning he decided to get up and fix himself breakfast.  Never mind that his sister was trying to sleep on the couch and I could hear him in the back of the house hustling around.  He was going to do what he was going to do.  This is after multiple "Shut up!s", "Duh!"s, and other disrespectful language he's tossed around to me.  So at 2:45 I found myself engaged in a tug of war over his guitar, which i had told him was going away should he speak to me that way again.  As I type, my hands are bruised from the strings of the guitar, and my soul is bruised from his nastiness.  I am honestly to the point that I really don't want him to live in my house anymore.

Did I say that?  Really?  How did I get to the point where my baby is such a bully that I don't want him in my house?  I had a plan.  He was going to have an evaluation done by the city and have intensive in-home therapy.  If that didn't work, he would go into residential care.  The absolute last stop would be going back into therapeutic foster care or foster care itself.  But I'm so worn down, so scared for myself and my family and even my dog, that I don't want him in the house anymore.  He has lit candles and waved flames in my daughter's face.  He has poked her with silverware.  He has kicked me in the abdomen and twisted my wrist.  But his words fly fast and loose, slapping whoever happens to be in the way, and it's brutal.  I honestly don't know any more if I can raise this child to adulthood.

He refuses to go to school.  He is going to fail the year because of absences and refusal to do his work. He doesn't sleep for days and then can't get up for days.  He is mentally ill beyond anything I am equipped to deal with and I don't know where to turn for help.

The experts all tell me I'm doing the right thing.  This assessment by the city is the next step.  I said I have no hope and beyond this assessment and the in home intensive therapy, I don't.  I don't know how you give a kid back to the system after twelve years.  Do you just show up in court and say, "I'm sorry, judge, but I've given him every chance I know to do, every therapist I've known to take him to, committed him to residential treatment, in home treatment, and nothing helps?  He's tried to light his sister on fire and I'm afraid of him"?  And where does he go?  And do I try not to care?  Do I get to see him?  Or is that it...he's no longer my concern?  And how do I reconcile that with everything I know and believe as a mother?

And how do I pick up the pieces...the child left behind who is bonded to him, perhaps even more strongly than she is bonded to me?  He has been there her entire life, with the exception of two months. She is angry at him, but not scared of him; I am scared AND angry.  How do I take my two children and reconcile them down to one?

I look at this child that I carried home with me twelve years ago, the sad and lonely child that I tried to love completely, and I don't know him any more.  All I see is an explosive, angry young man who is capable of anything.  My heart breaks for what I wanted him to be.  My heart breaks for what I wanted for all of us.

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Get Right With Me

Get right with me.

There's a song by Depeche Mode with the above title.  It falls on the album after several darker songs dealing with pain, manipulation, sex, and darkness.  I always envision a gospel choir backing the singer as he sings they lyrics.

I will have faith
In that
That it's hard to
Don't waste your energy
Use your ability
Get right with me.

The last several weeks or months have made me think frequently of this song.  How often I see out answers that are really unimportant; the importance, as one of my more faithful friends would say, is to use your energy and ability to get it right with God.

Is such a sure thing
That I cannot comprehend.
But if this life
Were abhorring
There are things I know we'd bend

How much is beyond my control?  Everything.  I like to think I'm in control of everything.  And to some degree, I'm in control of certain issues.  Whether I get up in the morning, if I get dressed, what I do, the help I reach out and ask for.  But I don't control it all.

Take my advice
Already told you once
Once or twice
Don't waste your energy
You have the ability
Get right with me.

How often does God sit there and think, "Michelle, do you get it yet?"  I wonder if he breaks his pencils when he watches me, or if he just shakes his head and says, well, she's still got some years left...waiting for me to figure it out.

This mother's day I'm reminded of the story of the man who fell into the ocean and was drowning.  A rowboat came by and said, "Here, let us help you!"  The man said, "No, I have faith that God will save me."  A bit later a ship came by and said, "Please, man, let us help you!" The man again declared, "No, I have faith that God will save me!"  The man grew weaker when he saw a helicopter hovering over him, dropping a ladder.  "Here!" yelled a man on the ladder.  "Grab the ladder!  We'll save you!"  Shaking and overcome with weakness the man declared, "No, God will save me!"  Shortly thereafter, the man caved to the cold waters and drowned.

Upon meeting his maker, he said, "God, I don't understand!  You said if I believed in you, you would save me!  I believed beyond belief, and here I am, dead..."

The Lord shook his head sadly.  "Did you not understand?" he asked gently.  "I sent a rowboat, a ship, and a helicopter for you."

I wonder often how many times I turn down the rowboats in my life expecting something grander or more amazing to save me.

Get right with me.

I'm trying.