To be or not to be…a raging bitch?

So here we are, months from my child’s high school graduation and while I am super excited to see her achieve this milestone in her life it has also become a sort of stress-inducing situation.

Let me fill you in on a little bit of the back story:

15 is the age I was when I had her, as was her father.

15 was the age he decided he didn’t want to be a father.

He was in and out of her life, in when he was “attempting” to reconcile our relationship and out when he and I were at opposite ends.

His family, while they made a minimal effort to be in her life, were and are just as self-serving as he is. You know the type, the mom who can’t admit her son is wrong, the type who makes excuses for all his actions… that is who he is, that’s who raised him.

The last 18 years of her life have been an emotional rollercoaster of unresolved feelings and bouts of anger, directed at me because she cannot direct them where they belong, their relationship is not that solid, it would not survive her honesty.

If we’re being honest he wouldn’t accept her honesty, he would simply blame me and say I brainwashed her. Her father is the type of guy who is never wrong and bad things just seem to happen to him, he has never accepted an ounce of responsibility for his actions, I’m speaking in regards to her.

When she was 8, I packed up our stuff and relocated from San Diego to Riverside County, 2 1/2 hours away from him, his family, my family, my friends and anything we’d ever known. It was our fresh start and I could not be more grateful for the move we made.

Not once did he say to me, “Don’t take her.” Instead the first few years I heard a lot of, “I’m going to take you to court.” I welcomed the idea because maybe then he could build a relationship with her. It never happened.

In the 1o years that we have lived here, he has made the trip a handful of times. (I’m not even being dramatic.) On the occasion that he made his way out here to pick her up for the weekend or we met him halfway, I always ended up having to go all the way to San Diego to pick her up because he decided he didn’t want to make the drive to hold up his end of the commitment. I put an end to that quickly and never heard a complaint from him about it.

If this sounds like I’m just complaining about the shitty man I had a child with, I am but it’s only because I need you to understand what’s coming next.

I am the parent. In all aspects. I have always been the parent, even when I turned 18 and then 21, even when I partied and had moments of selfishness, I have always been the parent.

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I am blessed to no longer be doing this alone, my boyfriend has been in her life for almost 8 years now as a father figure and while she doesn’t call him dad, that’s exactly who has been for her.

We have come along way with her, teenagers suck. We’ve dealt with the weed, the drinking, the sneaking out, the sneaking in, the lies, the attitude….(oh Lord the attitude) and the overall teenage drama.

When she began to act out, I made an effort to reach out to him, I explained what was happening and he said, ” I will talk to her.”

Well, that conversation never happened, he has yet to have a conversation with her that reflects him in a parental light. I decided, he just wasn’t that man in her life. (He made that decision for us all actually.)

She loves him, despite all his flaws, she loves him. He has no idea how undeserving of that devotion he is.

Welcome to my dilemma.

 

She gets 7, count them, 7 tickets to graduation. I have no intention of reserving any of those tickets for his family, I had no intention of reserving a ticket for him. I expressed my feelings to her and she expressed hers.

“He’s my dad.”

I guess.

Am I wrong? Am I wrong for not wanting him to be a part of something that WE, her and I, my boyfriend and I have worked so hard on? My boyfriend knows and respects the fact that he will be there, he’s not childish or immature in any way.

I just don’t understand how he could even show his face knowing he hasn’t been a parent her whole life. This parenting shit isn’t easy and I’ll be damned if credit isn’t given where credit is due. WE have done everything to motivate her academics, to help her pursue her college career, to make her a better person.

WE have just simply been her parents.

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Do I let go and just let it play out?

His child support hasn’t been paid in over a year, maybe he can earn his ticket by catching up on his payments? (It’s not about money, it’s about principle.)

Be a fucking father, don’t just pretend to be one for the gram.

Thanks for reading my long post. Your opinions are welcome.

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A letter to my younger self.

Dear Julie,

At some point in your life, you’re going to find yourself fighting for a man who isn’t yours. You will eventually realize that you took your bruised heart from one unworthy man to another. He will seem right but I promise you he is all wrong. You have let him go before and you will let him go again. He won’t make it easy to walk away, in fact, when you finally build the courage to let go he will pull you back in.

Being who you are and loving the way you do, you will let him.

You will make a million mistakes for him and because of him but don’t worry they won’t matter. They will allow you to learn yourself and grow into yourself. The men who come into your life after him will help you heal, also allowing you to learn about yourself. They will serve their purpose and then you will move on.

There will be a chapter in your life where you will find yourself alone but I promise you will find the light. All of your life experiences will serve you. You see, there is a man waiting for you. A man who will make you realize and help you understand why nothing else seemed to fit. This man will love you. YOU. Who you truly are. He will be the one to give you that final push into womanhood, allowing you to grow into yourself. He will treasure every bit of you, I promise. Your past, your present and your future, all a means to love you.

So, go ahead, live your life, love the way you love, make mistakes and learn your lessons. Your life will be all that you envisioned and all that you’ve desired. Be patient and humble, trust yourself and love yourself. Not only will you find the love of a real man but you will love you, unconditionally.

You will be one badass woman.

xo,

Your future self.

 

P.S.

Oh and this mom thing, you’ve got it handled but you should know the older she gets the more like you she will become, sort of.

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I gave up my life for you.

At times I feel like I deserve a do over.

And then I feel guilty for thinking such things.

The weight of the world has always been on my shoulders.

To be a mom is God’s greatest gift, to be a single mom, perhaps a blessing and a curse.

When she gets restless and acts ungrateful I feel a resentment burn inside me.

I gave up my life for you, perhaps a better life and you wanna talk back to me? You wanna fight and argue with me when I say no.

A resentful feeling of frustration manifest inside of me and then the guilt comes, never far behind.

I can’t feel any other emotions because the guilt is always in the distance over shadowing any other sense of emotion.

I gave up my life for you and you don’t even realize it.

My time, my energy, my sense of control and my peace, never have I felt so vulnerable and helpless.

He calls and has a 30 minute conversation, gives you a couple bucks and he’s done his duty for the week perhaps the month and here I stand, disregarded and disrespected.

I gave up my life for you and I’m the bad parent.

I’m the one who hands out punishments and deals with the stress and the headaches, let’s not even talk about the heartaches.

I gave up another life for you, one where I’m selfish.

At times I feel like I deserve a do over.

A guilt manifests so deep inside that I can’t shake the idea of no you, no me.

He gave up nothing for you and somehow his guilt doesn’t consume him.

Somehow you can forgive him and love him despite it.

He feels no guilt, he feels no shame.

He feels no worry, no stress or heartbreak.

I gave up myself for you.

At times the weight is too hard to carry, at times too much to bear and so I cry.

I cry because I can’t control you and I worry.

You have no idea what the weight of the world feels like.

You have no idea, Life doesn’t offer a do over.

This Mom Thing

Let’s talk about this mom thing

This make me wanna pull my hair out and scream thing.

This make me wanna cry thing

Throw a fit and throw up type thing.

Let’s talk about this mom thing, the thing that all women aspire to be, pray and hope for thing.

Let’s talk about how this mom thing ain’t all it’s cracked up to be.

This mom thing.

This mom struggle.

This mom thing doesn’t get easier, shit just gets harder.

And yet somehow this mom thing is everything.

Don’t come into this light-hearted or you’ll fuck around and die broken-hearted.

This mom thing, mom to a teen thing, mom to a teen girl thing.

This mom thing is like karma striking and making you wish you would have been down with your own mom’s thing.

This mom thing making you feel gratitude, appreciation, and sorrow towards your own mom’s thing.

This mom thing, shit comes back around, making you understand this mom thing is a serious thing.

No bullshit and games, just real life type things.

This mom thing, it’s a for life thing.

To the woman who allowed my underage child to drink in her home.

What kind of mother are you?

To allow my child to be put at risk in your home.

To decide if she could have a drink or two or ten.

What kind of mother are you to allow another mothers child to be put in a situation where she cannot speak, stand, or be unconsciously unaware of her surroundings?

What kind of mother are you to watch a young woman drink in excess in a predominantly male environment?

What kind of mother are you to let her sit on your couch, unconscious and vulnerable?

 What kind of woman are you?

What kind of woman are you to watch and stand idly by, while another woman potentially endangers her life?

What kind of woman allows another woman to lower her self-awareness and not intervene?

What kind of woman is this?

The kind that becomes the type of mother who hasn’t got a clue.

The kind of woman who is the kind of mother who wants so desperately to be cool and young. Hip and in the crowd.

This is no real mother.

This is no real women.

She is a fraud.

A hazard.

A danger to womenkind.

A danger to your children and specifically to mine.

I could blame myself for allowing her to be in your home.

For trusting my child’s instincts.

I could blame myself but I blame you.

I am her mother.

She is my daughter.

How dare you put her future and her safety at risk!!

How dare you sit on the sidelines!!

How dare you influence her negatively!!

How dare you supply the evil that you supplied!!

How dare you not pick up the phone and call me!!

How dare you not intervene!!!

How dare you not call for help!!

You careless woman.

You careless mother.

What kind of mother are you?

I’m the kind of the mother that does not allow my child to be put at risk and sit idly by.

I’m the kind of mother that responds and reacts.

 A lioness full of fire.

 I’m the kind of mother whose child you should have never fucked with.

I’m the kind of mother who does not play childish games.

I’m the kind of mother who is an adult and capable of accepting that as an adult, I will handle the situation as such.

I’m the type of woman who does not care what it takes as long as justice is served for all women, specifically mine.

From the mother whose child, your recklessness put at risk.

Stay home with me.

On occasion, I allow my daughter to stay home from school because I miss her.

Time goes by way too fast. It doesn’t feel like it was that long ago that my baby was learning to walk.

I see her day in and day out but I don’t always SEE her.

She told me one time,

“Just because you’re here with me doesn’t mean you’re spending time with me.”

Words of wisdom from my mini-me.

She never hesitated to tell me how it was, occasionally hurting my feelings. Long gone are the days of Barbie’s and Cheetah Girls.

“I’m ready,” she says as she walks into my room early in the morning.

“Stay home with me.” I’ll mumble.

She quickly climbs on the bed with me. Sometimes we lay on the bed and just talk, other times we fall asleep together until mid-afternoon, waking up together, going for coffee together.

Occasionally I need her, to see her and be with her.