It's funny how things can change in an instant. How one little event can leave you feeling like nothing will ever be the same again. I knew when I had a child there would be times that would make me question myself, my parenting ability, my own confidence, but I'm finding that having an adult daughter comes with it's own set of problems, ones that can't be solved with a big hug and a snuggle on the sofa.
Today, I'm torn between shaking her and screaming at her to open her eyes and see the truth, and sitting back heartbroken watching her find her own way in the world and in her relationships.
It's so easy to see things from the outside in, and it's so hard to stay on the outside, looking in, seeing the train wreck that's coming and having to stand aside helpless to anything other than wait for it, and be ready to offer those hugs when the world as she knows it crashes around her.
Having a job, helping our family financially was so much more important than I would have ever dreamed. Having lost that, I've struggled for the past four years to find some kind of purpose for my own life. Some days I do okay, others not so much. As hard as I tried to find a job, and I do mean thousands of applications, hours and hours of scouring job sites, clicking on links, submitting resumes, nothing would shake loose. I was okay for a while, I felt purpose just from looking for a job. But eventually I gave up on that even. Three years with not a nibble or a bite tends to take the fight out of you.
Now with every month that rolls around, every mortgage payment we don't have, every time the power gets cut off, or the gas or water, every time I have to call and ask for extensions on my bills or call the bank and try to have an overdraft fee reversed, everytime I have to fix food I wouldn't have if it weren't for the kindness of others, I feel a little bit less like a woman. Ugh. That just slipped out. I've never really hit it like that.
A woman is supposed to be the heart of the family. The one everyone turns to, the one who makes everything alright. The one that no matter what has everything in control and manages to make everything turn out okay in the end. The one who heals the broken hearts, soothes wounded pride, helps her children find themselves in the world.
I haven't felt that in a very long time. I don't talk about it much, I'm a very private person when it comes to the things that matter, but today it's all leaking out and I can't seem to stop it.
My next door neighbor can't find her cat. That might seem out of place in this post, but she was on vacation and I was supposed to be taking care of Daisy. She's older than dirt, sick, horribly thin, and until day before yesterday she was at her house, and she was fine. Now she's missing, and I feel responsible. She was here the other night, clawing at the door wanting in. I've got a dozen damn cats in the house and yet I didn't let her in. She was lonely. And now she's missing.
Life - 1; Donna - 0
My daughter....ugh. She's racing full speed toward having her heart broken, and she can't see it. She's with a bastard who has sucked all the self worth she had out through his infantile manipulations, left her feeling like she's not normal, that she's LUCKY he loves her because she doesn't deserve love.
Every guy that knows her wants to be with her and she insists that if they KNEW her like the boyfriend does, they wouldn't. That he's the only one who really knows her and loves her anyway. How do you call that love? She's missing out on so many opportunities because she's settled for someone who treats her like she doesn't matter. Sure he has his charming moments, but HOW can she not see what I see? A stubborn, selfish, childish human being who will never change. He's almost 21 years old and hasn't worked for the past two years. My daughter has never been on a real date. He manages to ruin every single special day in her life one way or another.
How did this happen? Why couldn't I do anything to stop it? Why didn't I see that he was blinding her to all the things that make her wonderful? It's not just that she's my daughter either. She's got a heart as big as all outdoors, she loves to help people, to make people smile. She'd do anything for a friend. She worries about me when I'm upset. She cries when I do. Her spirit is so beautiful, and it's like a little bird, trapped in a big ugly cage, beating it's little wings until they're broken and bleeding and it hurts me so badly I can't even express the pain.
Everyone says she's got to do this. She has to learn and discover on her own, but if you've ever given birth to a tiny baby girl, ever held that fragile little body in your hands and known with all your heart that she's truly yours, that you're responsible for her, for helping her grow up to be a beautiful, wonderful woman, you'll know that doesn't make it better. I can't help but feel like I've failed some massive mother test, that I've let her down in a way that is totally and completely unforgivable.
I want so badly to fix this, to fix everything. To go back to when our lives were different. To when I could kiss her little boo boos, slap on a Hello Kitty bandaid and wait for that smile to shine through the tears. Hers and mine.