It’s been building for a while, actually. I know this blog gets linked to my facebook, and at this point I could give a flying fig who sees or reads this. It’s MY turn to rant!!
I have a large family. I am the oldest girl in a group of 15 grandchildren. I was also the first to have children of my own. My youngest cousin is younger than my middle son, though not by much.
I love my family and have hundreds of happy memories of all of them, from random visits, to huge family gatherings for holidays or summer vacation. Those were some good times.
There was always a little drama involved though, I mean, NINE aunts and uncles (and their spouses) and 13 cousins? It’s hard for there not to be some drama there. It’s part of being in a family.
In my mid-teens we had a bout of even greater drama, and it kind of fractured (okay not kind of, it totally obliterated it) family relationships. The next few years saw us all struggling to find our new happy medium and some of us *cough cough* me *cough cough* had a hard time with it. I had lost something really important to me, and I wound up looking to replace that relationship in whatever way I could. I was a little out of control, though not surprisingly, not too out of control. I stopped paying attention to what was most important (school) and gave everything I had into my friends. I didn’t go to school. I dropped out, I tried to kill myself, more than once. I had an unhealthy obsession with my boyfriend and picked up some bad habits from him (cigarettes, alcohol). When I finally got a clue about Life, I had already done something I needed to face the consequences to. I wound up pregnant. For those that know me, NO I didn’t do it on purpose!! My god, I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had that said to me! You don’t know what happened. The night I found out, it was to prove my mom wrong. I was SURE I was late because I was super stressed at having just lost my job. So I took that test, ready to say “See? Not pregnant!!” But upon seeing the results of that little test, at 19 years old, my life changed. My boyfriend and I went to the clinic the next day for an actual doctor’s test. I cried. I cried a lot, they offered me counseling to “look at my options”. I walked away saying I would think about it. And I did. I changed my life because I was going to be a mother.
My friends were supportive, and so was my family (or so I thought, some of them were) and I was ready to make it work somehow. My son was born and it was the happiest day of my life. I had never seen anything more pure and wonderful in my life until I laid eyes upon him.
I went back to school for him. I went to college for him. I gave up my freedom for him. I would do it again in a heartbeat. Right before I finished my last year of college, I found out I was pregnant again. I was in disbelief. I had been taking my birth control, sure I was stressed and there was other drama going on, but what the heck? I took 5 home tests before I saw my doctor. I took an incomplete in my classes for him, and knew I would go back. At least that’s what I told myself. I got a job that I hated. I dealt with really pissed off people over the phone for shit pay everyday of the week and sometimes on Saturday. It sucked. Eventually, I had to leave that job, especially when it became apparent that the company profits were going up the CEO’s nose. No shit, I saw it and quit the next day. As much as that job sucked though, I loved my co-workers and cried when I left.
Then I started to really unravel. Let it be said, that from my mid-teens (when Big Drama happened) I had become increasingly unstable, emotionally. My Grams took me to a shrink, I saw that woman 2x a week for 3 months, and at the end the shrink told me that I was nuts and needed medication. My Grams said hell no and we left.
But when my then 2 children were 5 and 2 years old, I had a psychotic break. I would cry over nothing, rage at the world, I thought about suicide a LOT. I heard news from my boyfriend I didn’t want to hear and the wave of anguish was so great that my friend in Hoodsport called me 5 minutes later to ask about the “disturbance in the force” that she felt. It was crazy actually. I had hung up the phone and then she was calling, no time for me to say anything to anyone. I kept spiraling. My one friend, whom I give massive credit to for saving my life, would make a crack here and there whenever I would say something suicidal to her. I mentioned to her once I wondered if eating a whole bottle of tylenol pm would kill me. She said no, but I would spend the rest of the night puking (actually it can, btw) but after that we had Real Talk and she encouraged me to go see a doctor. I did, and I was afraid. But when the doctor and I sat and talked about what was going on, she told me I had an illness. A real one, that was treatable. I could find my happy medium again. Bipolar disorder is not a fun diagnosis, but I cried with relief that day, because I believed I was losing my mind. Instead I found hope. A month later another friend of mine calls me and asks “Are you pregnant?” Me: “Noooo. Absolutely not. Wait. Are you vibing me?” Her:
“Nooooooo….” I went right out an bought a test and wouldn’t you know! Pregnant!!
I guess I should have read the pamphlet for my new medication a little better. Turns out it causes BC to be ineffective. Yay.
Almost died having my last one, so he really was my last one. It’s now 15 years since that day I found out I was pregnant the first time. Lot of mistakes made, lessons learned and trials to be overcome. That’s Life. I never did get to go back an finish my degree, and now so much time has gone by, I think I’d like to do something different. I don’t know. Having the bipolar diagnosis certainly explained a LOT of things to me about my earlier years. Turns out it manifests in the teen years, so right around that Big Drama, I started manifesting. My boyfriend (we manage to work things out) now fiance has never known me when I was “normal”.
So what is the point of my story? So let’s get back to that family I was talking about earlier. My grandfather was disappointed but loved my oldest son, he unfortunately passed away before the second was born, but he would have loved him too. One of my uncles died after my first was born, and I will forever hold dear to my heart the day he came to meet my son the first time. My uncle had cancer you see. So he was bald, and weakened. But he was filled with life that day, didn’t even wait for the car to fully stop before he was jumping out and saying “Where’s that baby? Where’s my new nephew?” and he swooped up my son in his arms, held him so gently and said “look! we’re twins!”
When he died, we had a memorial for him. I brought my infant son with me. A family member asked to hold him, and then said to me: “Your son is a bastard child and will burn in hell you know.” Say what now? Wow, well isn’t that such a wonderful and ever so Christian-like thing to say to a young mother and her beautiful little boy.
I didn’t talk to that branch of the family for a long time after that. In fact, I had nothing to do with them until the day I walked into the hospital room where my grandfather lay dying, pregnant with my second child and begging him not to die.
Now it’s many years later, and I get all kinds of comments about my life. I have all kinds of comments to offer others about their lives. My comments stem from a “Been there, done that. Please don’t go that route!” attempt to try and make someone see the colossal trainwreck they are headed for. “Keep out of trouble, stay in school, get a job, get settled in your own skin.” Those are things that I tend to say, a lot. Now it’s getting to “quit fucking whining you stupid brat and grow the fuck up! Life is hard! It’s not fair! Stay in school, quit bitching about yoga pants and put your nose to the grind. Get a job, a career that you will love. Worry about the rest after that.”
But wouldn’t you know, I’ve got those family members waiting in the wings. Ready to defend their special snowflake by “putting me in my place.” I had an aunt, while very drunk, tell me, in front of my teen son that she thinks the worst thing I ever did in life was have my children. Wow, well. I didn’t hate you before, but now I’m pretty damn close to it. I spend way more time than I should reassuring my children that they are loved and wanted. That they are NOT mistakes.
They are getting older now, and comprehend a lot more than people give them credit for. I just recently unfriended someone who has been close to the family for years because she called me a freeloading slut. Well fuck you very much. She later private messaged me and called me a coward for unfriending her. Nope. It’s called being an adult and choosing not to play. Now, I’ve got another family member calling my children mistakes. Calling me a freeloader. Again, fuck you very much. You don’t know me, you know what you hear through the family grapevine. I don’t need you and my kids don’t need you. You don’t deserve the privilege of knowing my amazing boys. Who are a GIFT from the gods.
I will not tolerate any negative comments about my boys. From ANYONE. This is the last warning. There will be no more forgiveness given for this offense. I am better than that. I choose to walk away (yes, even from “family”) rather than listen to you try to convince me of where you think I went wrong in life.