1/12/14

Give until it hurts. And dammit, it does.




I’ve tried so very hard these past years to find ways to mend this heart of mine.  It took some time for it to be reduced to rubble.  I am finding that putting it back together has taken some thoughtful and purposeful action that only a slightly used woman in her fifties might understand.


I have realized that spending time with people who lift me up, who make me smile and remind me of all that I have are key to this process.


And then there are the others.


I’m not talking about mean spirited people, or evil sentries sent by the dark Lord.  I’m talking about people with sons.  I’m talking, in particular, about the friends I have with sons in high school; sons that are friends with my Golden Boy. 

I see these women here and there, having coffee at Starbucks or attending a meeting of the football or rugby teams.  I see them at TJ Maxx, the Giant, Barnes and Nobles or at in-service sessions.  They smile and hug me affectionately, and we always end up in the same place.

“How is GOLDEN BOY?” they ask.  “Well, you know Stan is doing this, and this happened at school, and then this and this happened; blah, blah, blah, blah.   Is that what you’re seeing?”


During the course of these pleasant and very well-intentioned conversations my heart begins to ache.  I can feel the tears begin to pool on the inside of my eyelids as I search for ways to block out the words that are hitting my like spears and I find an excuse, any excuse, to run all the way home and ignore the world, because as you may know, I am not able to spend those small but important moments with my son. 


I don’t get to beg him to get out of bed, to take a shower, or to wash his face more often.  I don’t get to yell at him about his homework, the dirty socks on his floor, the broken what-nots around the house or the endless hours he spends on the Play-station.  I don’t get to remind him that every grade in school now counts, and that the to earn the respect of teachers you have to give it right back. 

I see him briefly several times a week when he needs a lift from the Y back to his father’s house. (The one that I am still paying for.)   He jumps into the car and grunts a yes or a no to every question I ask him.  He hops out in his driveway and responds with a “love you, too” when I shout to him before he slams the car door shut. 

Yes, I’m thankful that he’s alive and that he’s close enough for me to see when it’s convenient for him, but I am still a mother without her son.   And I hope  - I PRAY – that someday soon he’ll realize that his mother gave him an incredible gift.




Even if that gift came at an incredibly, incredibly high price.




14 comments:

Laura said...

As someone who walked in the same shoes you are I can promise that it does change. I too felt those same feelings, wondered how I could really call myself a Mom when I wasn't there for every moment. I finally quit beating myself up after several counseling sessions and kept repeating "I did the best I could at the time" and focused on the brief moments.

He was 14 when his Father and I split and now at 24 although he is out living his life he calls me regularly to talk. Just yesterday as he called me to discuss a problem he said "i can always talk to you and you never judge (like Dad) and you listen and give solid advice - you have always been that way for me Mom" - and that is what heals my heart. To know yes, you can parent even if they don't spend every day with them and their little moments.

Sending hugs
@OhItsThatLaura

Linda M. said...

Every time I see you, you have a smile and a hug for me. You have such spirit and such a warm and loving heart that is must be apparent to a teenage boy, who for whatever reasons has chosen to live with his dad. I pray for your light of love for others to continue to shine, and that one day, he might TELL you he knows it's there. (He is, after all, a teenage boy, who on average use about 10 words a week with their parents--says the mom of three boys....)

Sarah said...

Holding you up, D.

Razmataz said...

I have been in a similar but different situation. I really feel your pain. Part of me wants to be happy for those moments you have with your boy and part of me wants to slap him and tell him to be more respectful of his mother. You are much deserving of some time with him where you are not providing him with a service. I've raised teenagers and know how selfish, awkward and un caring they can be. I also think you get treated the way you allow yourself to. I mean that with no dis-respect to you. This boy who breaks your heart has a heart of his own and he is not too young to be able to look into his heart and treat you better. That said, I am sure there is/are 1 million aspects to this I in no way understand and I am sure he is doing the best he can. I guess I am just mad at him for you.

Joanna Jenkins said...

Big sigh. If it's any consolation-- I have several friends with teenage boys who barely speak more than a grunt to their parents. I'm hoping beyond hope that as Golden Boy matures he'll see very clearly the gigantic gift you gave him and he'll start giving back too.
Time, VM, time.
xoxoxoxo jj

Gigi said...

Oh sweetie - sending you hugs. I think when he's older he will appreciate the gift you've given.

Sharon K said...

You know Vodka, I do not think our children any different than we were. Can't you remember probably doing something like this to your mom or dad? I can sorta understand (not really because I am not living it) how these little things are much harder , because you do not have him everyday. I don't think we ever appreciate our parents until we have our own children, .

Sheila said...

Sending you love and light.
Take care of yourself~

XOXO

Mocadeaux said...

I hope, and suspect, that when Golden Boy has his own kids he will have an epiphany. I hope it doesn't take that long but it might. Boys are kinda slow...
In an effort to make you laugh, I present this: http://www.buzzfeed.com/aj8/19-jokes-only-grammar-nerds-will-understand-cfe3
It's not President Boy with his corn dogs but it's pretty good.

Irish Gumbo said...

c

Irish Gumbo said...

Sorry about that. Here's what I meant to say:

Keep loving him, come what may, and he will know the gift someday. Peace to you, Madam.

Brian Miller said...

right now, he might not see that...and it may be years from how before he realizes it...i agree with IG...just keep loving him...know its going to hurt a bit...but that love will be what he remembers....

Lynn said...

OK, now. I am getting worried about you. I check in on you just about every day, but seldom make comments. Now I just want you to say something so I'll know you are OK. OK?

Lynn Guinn

Midlife Roadtripper said...

Twenty-three, Mom. That's when your boys come back to you. You will be very special then. Bide your time well and make certain he knows you are there. But 23, something happens and all of a sudden, you are welcome in their lives once again.