Seriously, I know this sounds like I'm looking for a pity party but I'm not...it's just the way the cookie crumbles in my life as it stands now.
So many things have changed over the past 2 years. In the past two years we have been through so much...and some days I just can't wrap my head around how my life has changed...and I really don't think it's for the better.
I can't say I will ever return to be the parent or person I used to be. I hope someday I will find a new normal, find a new me? Find a way to move on without it seeming like there's reminders and triggers everywhere.
I not only have been slacking at keeping my blogs updated but I've been slacking at life. It's a real struggle to get up in the morning, yet I do it. I may not shower or get dressed even (at this point, I think I've been in my PJ's since Wednesday (and it's Friday)). -- and you know what? I really don't care. I doubt anyone else does either. It's not like I've seen anyone or had any desire to see anyone.
I cook meals, sometimes I even plan them but I can't say they are healthy balanced meals. You know what? I don't really care...my kids have food in their bellies and that's all that really matters right now. I'm not totally neglecting them. Somedays I wonder...but I know they are clean, loved and fed. That's all a child needs right? If only I felt like I was doing my best...But there are days I just can't do anything, no less my best....
Hey there's clean clothes in their drawers. I sit here writing this with tears in my eyes, yet I see the smiles on their faces as they watch videos. Yes I've reduced my kids to watching movies..so what? It's better than them sitting and looking at me and seeing the sadness I seem to carry within me and sometimes can't control that it comes out.
Now back to the title of this post...not the parent I used to be...I am no longer the advocate I was for Harley. Yes, I want to keep him home as long as possible...I make sure he has his meds and his care...but at this point I feel like I am more his "staff' than his parent. He truly doesn't understand anything emotional -- most of the time. He's not as physically aggressive as he used to be, so I guess that's a step in the right direction. But he also spends more time alone. Some parts of me says that's pretty typical for a 15 year old boy...but at the same time I know that for the past 8 years he's been plateaued - for the most part - at a 5 year old functioning level. It's not looking as though he will progress beyond that. It's hard because he is now my 'oldest' (living) son - in body only - as he will always be a child in mind. It's a daily struggle within myself to draw a line with him...I could tell him how much I love him and he will ignore it like I never said anything. Some days that's really hard to take.
Not the parent I used to be...to Kelly either...She hates me now. This was evident in some of the statements she made at the sentencing of the driver who killed Robert. Never again will she trust me, because in a time of weakness I said things I should not have. I can only hope that some day she can see and feel that I too was hurting and had no where and no one...and all I wanted was to hold HER...she is the closest thing I have to Robert now and she just pushed me away and blamed me for Robert's death. Me and Harley. That I will take to my death bed...I hope that before I die she comes around and tries to understand how much I was hurting as well...without turning it around on me and telling me I am only trying to guilt trip her or be an attention seeker.I am so afraid of dying knowing my daughter, my only daughter, hates me and blames me for taking her most prized relationship in her life...
Not the parent I used to be -- or should be -- to Tyler. He is now in first grade. He is such a smart little man and I am so proud of him, but I don't think I say it or show it often enough. I try, I really do...as he grows there are more and more things I see as him having in common with Robert at this age. I know that no two children are exactly alike...and I thank Robert for teaching me different ways to deal with it by being my first born child. I promise Robert, I will NOT make the same mistakes with Tyler as I did with you....I'm sorry I even made those mistakes with you...But I didn't know...I didn't know how to deal with it nor did I understand. But after having had the opportunity to be your parent and learn through you and our experiences together, I know that there are better ways to deal with things. I appreciate that Robert visits Tyler most often (at least Tyler says he dreams of you and you visit him in dreams). I need to get over my fears and be the parent he deserves...the parent I should have been or been able to be to Robert. It's just not fair that I didn't get full time with Robert at this age...looking at Tyler I see how much I missed out on. That alone should motivate me to say "Hey I don't want to miss out on this with Tyler too"...but some days the motivation just isn't there...it's hard to be a parent and be human too.
Not the parent I used to be -- or need to be -- for Zachary. Zachary's probably the toughest. He's the baby of the family...he's only got one more year and he's in school full time. Why am I looking forward to that when I should be enjoying the time I *do* have with him? Yes, I spend time with him, but I can't say most of it is quality time. It's so hard to hear him speak...when we know for the first two years of his life he couldn't hear...and how proud Robert was of his little voice once he was able to start speaking (once he was able to hear)...every time I hear Zac speak it's like a knife in my heart because I know Robert would be tickled and smiling and loving every single little syllable that comes out of his mouth. I try to look past that and say "hey he's talking and I need to listen"...which I *do* listen, but it's hard when it's always followed by Robert's voice mimicking him. Geeze, it's hard to believe that in just under 2 months Zac will be five years old!! He's not even trying to potty train...and yes, I push him, just not hard enough...and that too is part of Robert -- not that I am trying to turn everything into about Robert (no matter what Kelly thinks) but there are so many memories of him...he was a late potty trainer too and I know that pushing him just made it harder for him...and increased his anxiety. I don't want to do that to Zac...It's so hard to differientiate the right way to handle this...because no matter what I do brings memories -- both good and bad.
I hope that some day I can be a better person, a better parent -- I know I will always be a grieving parent -- but I hope some day it subsides so that I can function as a human again.
This has turned into a much longer blog post than I intended, but a wise friend suggested that I should continue blogging as it may just help.
And so this is my heart, my mind, my diary...open to the public. I hope that someday I can come back and read it and see that the despair has cleared some and I have found my "new" normal and my "new" self...even with the title of grieving parent.