There is something in realizing that you are in this on your own – alone. In realizing that no matter how hard you try, it really is just you. Because I have been working away, giving it my all and its not working. You tell yourself (the whole world tells us our whole lives) that if you just keep going, keep fighting the good fight, everything will work out. Everything will be alright in the end, if its not alright, its not the end. Today that doesn’t feel realistic.
There is something in having your hard stuff served up to you by your kids. Your teenage kids who seem to fkn know everything, experts in all the world will ever throw at them. The kids that you cant seem to please, no matter how hard you work.
Today it would be easy to give up – but I am trying hard to find the happiness in the little things. Sometimes they are really little, but they are just as worthy.
Hey there, you. How’s the week treating you? It’s been a long week here but I have made it through. Just. Kinda. If you didn’t laugh you’d cry, right?
SO I choose to try and stay positive and see the good bits about it. Even tonight, when I am beside myself, feeling like absolute fucking shit. Some days it feels impossible to keep trudging through the shit storm that is life.
Today I woke feeling dread, anxiety sitting in my chest, sadness in the pit of my stomach. Its Easter and I really tried to keep it all positive for the kids. But the girl child and I were both a little off all day. See, today was injection day. Today was the day that I knew, from the second I woke up, that this evening I would have to hold that little girl down and inject her with medicine that ‘could’ help her to feel better, the ‘could’ ease her pain. Maybe, if it works.
I feel like a special kind of asshole. Seeing my kid in pain everyday, knowing that she is hurting just to get the basic shit done… knowing that it was bad before we even knew what it was and for a long time I told her it was just growing pains and it would get better.
Once a week I give that kid a low dose of a drug that is used to treat cancer. Seriously. And then once a fortnight I inject her with what is essentially a different kind of poison that ‘could’ stop her body from attacking itself. Once a fortnight I hold that kid down so that she cant swat me away and stop me from delivering the injection that ‘could’ help her feel better, knowing that the injection itself hurts her. Knowing that she is going to feel like utter shit for the 4 or 5 days following. Knowing that the medications are creating a kind of brain fog that completely fuzzes her out enough that she has to leave herself notes everywhere just to remember what the hell she needs to do to get through the bare minimum each day.
This kid who has amazing potential, who has known what she wanted to do with her life since she was just 8 years old, this kid who gives it her all every single day. This kid who is smart enough to have done her own research and knows what is coming if she doesn’t let me give her that injection, and if she doesn’t take the tablets that make her want to crawl into bed and never get out again. This kid who dreads the injection and the tablets and cops it, kicking and crying, because she just wants to feel better. And then apologizes to me, because she knows it makes me sad.
I have seen some nasty divorces in my time. Straight up slanging matches and court appearances and horrible arguments over kids and custody and who gets the damn dog. I guess that was a good lesson for me, because I certainly learnt how not to behave.
The separation from my ex was clean. None of that poisonous shit that damages people in the long-term. I know it was hard on my kids, but it would have been a whole lot worse of their father and I had been on a mission to destroy each other. I am really proud of the fact that I haven’t slagged him off, not to them or to anyone else. And I am 100% certain that they have coped better than they would have if they had seen us hating on each other.
And it would have been really easy to hate him. Being cheated on and then cast aside for the shiny new toy was fkn hurtful.
But I had another little life lesson today, that hit me like a tonne of bricks from out of nowhere. I am disposable. Not just to him, but to an entire extended family that I adored. I have always valued family, as screwed up and dysfunctional as mine are, it has always been important to me. And I worked hard to create an amazing little family of my own, including brothers and sisters in law who I love as much as the rest of them. Those people were a bigger feature in my life than my blood relatives most of the time and my experience of family was so much richer for having had them in it.
When we first separated I talked to the extended family and made sure that they knew how important they were to me and that I didn’t want to lose them just because I was no longer with their brother. You would think that having people in your life for 10+ years would give it some concrete stability. But that wasn’t the case here.
Overall, it really just makes me sad. My kids are missing out on having their aunt, uncle and cousin in their lives and I am missing out on my gorgeous niece. And there doesn’t seem to be anything I can do about it. When we separated and his new girlfriend came on the scene, I kept all the nasty details to myself. I didn’t want anyone to think less of him and maybe I didn’t want anyone to think less of me. Somehow I was ashamed of being cheated on, like his actions were indicative of my worth. I am a little ashamed now that I let that define me.
I am doing a lot better these days, though still regularly falling into the habit of letting the old shit creep in. I am still a little broken and beaten down, but I think I am making progress. Just reminding myself everyday that as long as I keep moving forward I’ll be okay.
Hey there, you! How’s your day been? New year treating you well so far?
Its been an interesting start to the new year here. At the end of last year I had my youngest in and out of specialist offices and diagnostic testing, to discover that the kiddo has Rheumatoid Arthritis. Another auto-immune disease in the family. My heart broke, and I was incredibly relieved all at once. Heart broken because the early testing on the kid was becoming more and more invasive and the results were becoming more and more scary. At one point there, a specialist discussed with me that we needed to NOT research what was happening online – that although the results were scary there was nothing guaranteed until we looked a little closer. I knew what the doctor was saying and I completely understood. I didn’t look online because I was fkn terrified. I knew that a lot of what we were seeing were commonly seen in kids with Leukaemia diagnosis and I was scared senseless. The relief came when we were finally given the diagnosis, purely because it wasn’t Leukaemia.
The Rheumatoid Arthritis diagnosis was still a major shock to the system though. Medication and dosage has been a big hit too, it’s scary to see my kiddo hurting, and more horrible still to see that the medication at the moment seems to be making her sicker. In situations like this I would usually hold off on making decisions and do some research, see what sort of natural or alternative therapies we could try. But the symptoms at this point are just too advanced to wait so here we are. Trying to maintain high spirits and stay focussed on healthy and happy. She has some days when the pain is horrible, but I can see hope of it being better and that what I’m trying to stick with. She is a tough cookie and I have had a couple of moments now where I have been so completely overwhelmed with pride. Like when she came home with a bunch of flowers, that she bought for herself. She wanted to feel better and fresh flowers cheer her up. In that moment, I knew she would be okay. Whatever comes next, she is a tough cookie and she’ll be okay. And I have got her back all the way.
The one thing I realised in this is that I really am solo parenting these days. I kept the ex in the loop with all this stuff, and he was concerned and supportive, but at no point did he ask or offer to come along to any of the appointments and I had to really hold back from asking him to be there. It would have been really great to have him there to support her, and if I’m completely honest, I could have done with him being there too. I would have loved for him to be there. But it is what it is right?
I’m focussing on the future, staying positive and taking care of me and mine. The recent health scares have started us on a bit of a health kick and I have been doing more around the house, trying to make this little space of ours more homely. I have no doubt this new year is going to be a new adventure than anything we have faced before, but we got this shit!
Far out, this parenting gig is hard sometimes. Last night was a complete clusterf*ck of epic proportions. Ended with 2 kids in tears and this hot mess Mama sitting on the bathroom floor puking. My kids are struggling, after almost 2 years of their dad and I being separated, they are still struggling.
I’m not sure if its the same in all relationships but my kids are the most important people in my life and right now – nothing I can say or do is enough for them. They don’t want to have anything to do with their father’s girlfriend. They absolutely cant stand her, and the bit that scares me is that they are making real sense. It would be easier if they were just being shit heads who were pitching a fit because they don’t like something (like brussel sprouts) but they aren’t. They are desperate to know why there seems to be a different set of rules for them than there is for dad’s girlfriend. And I tried to explain that there had to be a different set of rules, they are his children and she is his girlfriend. But when she is behaving like an immature brat and is closer to their age than his… well its difficult to fucking explain.
My son is indifferent to her, and my daughter – well, she’s jealous. And she delivered up some pretty harsh fucking truths to me. She called bullshit on the girlfriends behaviour and kicked my arse for trying to justify what happens. Kicked my arse for making excuses for him letting her down. But what the hell am I supposed to say to her?
I don’t know what else to do, or how to make this all okay for them. So for last night, I held them and cuddled them til they stopped crying, then tucked them into their beds just like I have done every night since he left. And then I went and had a big horrible cry until I threw up, and sat on that bathroom floor and gave thanks that I get that privilege. That I am the one that gets to tuck them in every night and that we have the sort of relationship where they can tell me all of that gut-wrenching shit, even when its horrible and we all end up sobbing and snotty nosed.
And this morning, I woke them up early and rushed them through breakfast and skipped chores so that we could escape together and go on an adventure.
We jumped in the car and headed down south, not really certain on where we were going, singing stupid songs at the top of our lungs. We ended up at a lake that I had always wanted to go to, that we had always talked about going to as a family. So we did. I think it has finally sunk in, that the family unit has morphed a little now. That if I still want all those things I had better find a way to be brave enough to do them, sometimes with my kidlets, sometimes on my own. The elements of this life might not fit the mould of what I thought they would be like, but there is a way to make it all work still. I’m just gonna have to be a little brave…