Wednesday, July 28, 2021

Throwing In The Towel, Or Rather Selling It....

 "Motherhood is about raising and celebrating the child you have, 

not the child you thought you'd have." 

~The Water Giver

Youngest has returned home. Barely. He's abiding by the rules, briefly spending time at home when no one else is around. I added that he must stay overnight a minimum of 4 nights a week here and make it home on time if he wants to continue being here. This was conveyed via text of course because he is hardly never around to talk face to face, and responded to with the standard ok.  He is barely taking his medication, much to my disappointment.  If he leaves for good he won't take them anyways, and maybe if I stop harping on it, he may opt to take them on his own. The withdrawal is visible though, such a shame since it took 6 months to get them right. 

The Husband mentioned yesterday that he was scrolling through his phone and was overwhelmed with  sadness when he stumbled on old pictures of him a year ago.  So healthy.  Wrestling.  Eating. Focused. On a pathway for success. I told him it was time to let it go. It was time to take the HS wrestling and the college stickers off the truck.  It's not who he is anymore. And if by some lightning strike of a miracle, he pulls his head out of his ass and comes to his senses, he still won't be that person.  All those things do, the stickers, the hat and college alumni sweatshirt, is serve as a painful reminder of the path not chosen. 

He's forever changed himself. 

I calculated how much he will owe me for summer session.  I asked him at a brief encounter last night when he would have it for me.  He insists the session is not over and that he still has the chance to get a B, and until it is officially over he still has time to pay up his half of the money. He's passed in 2 more assignments.  His grade has gone from a 51 to a 56. Again, I'm reluctantly letting it go. The child that had focus and drive is now non existent, lost in a puff of skunky smelling smoke.

I texted him some highlights of our upcoming trip. He's not sure he wants to go as he may not have fun. I suggested that he look over some of the links, as you should never make a decision without knowing what you will regret not doing later.  I have no idea if he's taken the time to look at them or think about it at all. Communication is not something this new child does either.

I did the best I can with him, and I if I'm being truthful I'm not sure I could have done anything better. I know I was the right and best mother for him.  I think he just fell off the rails and now he's just being dragged along. Oldest sat on the couch with me last night, more in an effort to steal the good blanket, but we sat and watched TV nonetheless, chit chatting about nothing. It makes me furious that the sadness and loss of who Youngest was prevents me from fully enjoying the awesomeness of Oldest. Youngest is so much like his father it's becoming very hard for me to distinguish the two. He mentioned that it sucked, that the only person who could ever support him right now has been dead for ten years. Of course I cut him off, and told him he would not be supportive of his choices, simply because he knows how hard his life will be.  His father made all the same choices he is now, and his life was exponentially hard. He shrugged it off as usual, another invalidated truth now that his father's gone. 

I am tired of his playing the victim.  That he's somehow been wronged, or had a bad hand dealt.  These are his choices.  He chose to be homeless for the week.  He chose to puff his day away. He chose to distance himself from the family.  He's chosen to not do the work, and possibly fail out of school. I have supported everything he's ever wanted to do, karate 6 nights a week for 2 years, wrestling 3 hours away 5 days a week for 4 years, tournaments, hotel stays, Boy Scouts, even sending him a thousand miles away for the National jamboree. I sat in teacher conferences, advocated for him, and indulged every crazy idea he's ever had. Yet, if you ask him, we've never supported him at all. 

So I'm slowly letting it all go., and accepting this notion that he will ever be more than the childish, selfish boy in front of us now. I am selling off the dorm sheets and towels that have gone unused. I am scraping the stickers off the truck.  Packing away the championship jackets, the ghi for both karate and jujitsu. I am cancelling his med check appointment. I am giving up trying to save the child I raised for so many years.

And praying like hell the child he has become will save himself. 


  1. Oh hon! Maybe your pulling back will open his eyes (I hope). Sending you lots of love and hugs. I can't even imagine how you are feeling or coping. xo

  2. Maybe you guys accepting his choices will make him see them more clearly, too. Maybe when you didn't then he didn't have to because he was too busy head butting and disagreeing, you know. Tough love ain't easy but now he has simple rules or he's out. Again. His choice. No one else can change him...only himself. And he may not choose to. So painful. But you have done your very best for him. That's all a parent can do. And a child doesn't have a right to cause misery for the rest of the family forever, either. You all have the right to your own lives and your own choices, too. Sounds like you have still left the light on and the door cracked open. He may surprise you one day...and he may not. Bandage your heart and seek joy in your life. Appreciate sharing the blanket and conversation with Oldest. From the bottom of my heart...with love from Fargo.

  3. There is little you can do other then pray and hope

  4. Wow! So much going on and I can relate to it. I hope he'll be motivated by the differences in your attitude and behavior. You can only change yourself. Enjoy what you can, such as sharing the blanket with Oldest, and pull back from the heartache and drama with Youngest. I'm sending positive energy your way.

    Much love to you,

  5. I think you are wise to slowly let go and back away from too much involvement in his life at this point. It's sad and it's painful to do so but you got to take care of yourself and focus on the relationships that are "working" and are beneficial to you and your mental health. It is hard to do. I chose to walk away from my daughter after she became an adult and her mental health issues had sapped me for years with her suicide thoughts and gestures, etc. She was in a safe place and continues to be in a safe place at the age of 35 but I think if we had continued on the path we were on with her living at home and causing strife and stress, that path would have gotten bigger and more harder to pave over. She was finally able to get the help I pleaded for when she was out on her own which is sad when you think about it and our mental health clinicians and system need an overhaul I do believe.

    It might be a nice respite if Youngest doesn't go on the vacation with you guys. If he doesn't want to go and is reluctant to do so, why spoil the good time for the rest of you?

    Just pray and take care of yourself. Its about the best you can do at this point.


  6. You know, that's all you can do. And the sad thing is, those that want to legalize this crap will say he's an exception, not the rule. Truth is, any of us is a weak strand of DNA away- and we never know when it might snap.

  7. Finally just finished this in its entirety. I'm so sorry for you, and I know how it feels. Went through something similar with my youngest, only with meth. He had a promising career built on self-taught, highly sought after skills, a wonderful girlfriend, even a house. He seems to be coming around, but I'm not 100% certain it's legit. Be well, and good luck. The letting go part sucks.


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