Memory Lane


images (3)Where to start, that always seems to be the question.  I don’t want to approach this in the Dickensian style of ‘I was born’ because I’m not trying to write a book merely go back and look at a few key moments and how little steps led to a big fall.  There are, however, probably a few basics that need to be addressed as they do impact on the way my mind worked [and to a degree still works].

I’m the eldest child and apparently was one of those ‘easy‘ babies.  The eat, sleep and grow type but my brother, David was born two years later with Downs Syndrome and then three years after that my sister who had severe health problems as a small child. This meant that mum and dad were pretty much run off their feet and lived on little to no sleep for quite a few years.  Without understanding it fully I absorbed the idea that my part in this was to be healthy, happy and helpful.  I was loved without doubt but it was a difficult time for everyone and it became a part of my nature at a very young age to ‘appear’ to be in no distress or unwell.  That in itself is not so bad as I am sure there are many out there who have experienced similar situations but it did mean that when things did go wrong or I was hurt or unhappy I learnt to hide it as I didn’t want to be a burden.  This was why when I was hurt badly by a neighbor over a number of years I never said anything – I learnt to take a mental step to the side so to speak and put pain elsewhere.

lyingthosjeffersonAs I grew it turned into a point of pride for me.  The ability to continue with life, put things aside, compartmentalizing my emotions became a defining trait but one that came with a price, I learnt to lie and lie very well so that no one would think there was anything wrong and superficially of course that appeared to be the case.

As young adult I was slowly learning to move past that and become a little more in touch with who I was and who I wanted to be but the fates are at times heartless and I was stalked, attacked and badly injured at 21.  My family didn’t know of this until years later as I did what I had learnt to do so long ago, take a mental step to the side and continue but underneath the polished surface I was starting to fracture.  I didn’t know it at the time but I was starting to break under the pressure of suppressing negative emotions and at that point in time it WAS only the negative ones I suppressed.

385983461_1393373597Fast forward a few years and you’ll find me back at university where I met my first husband and much to my surprise discovered despite being told that I would never have children that I was pregnant.  I spent the large part of those 9 months utterly terrified as the internal damage and scar tissue from surgeries and other issues meant that each time there was significant growth I’d start to go into early labor.

Lots of time spent in hospital or sitting with my feet raised but toward the end it seemed to settle and in fact my son was born 2 weeks overdue.  I have never loved anyone so fiercely and so instantaneously in all my life as I did my boy. Having him was the greatest joy I had ever known and in that moment, when they first handed him to me I was so overcome and so utterly grateful for the gift of this precious child.

Now in the movies this is where the story ends, troubled girl with emotional detachment issues works past them even after a second wound, meet a boy, falls in love and has a baby and then they all live happily ever after.  Well to quote Blade Trinity

Everyone knows movies are full of shit.

pills_56390560The fissures in my psyche were still growing and anyone who has had a child will tell you of the terrible fears you have for them, the world is such a dangerous place and they are so small and need your protection and I was no different. As the fears rose, even just simple worry something happened that hadn’t for quite a while, I started getting migraines again.

They were in a way psychosomatic, By which I mean when fear or other similar emotions came to close to the surface of my consciousness my brain would give me crippling pain [my own personal aversion therapy – not fun] and it was here I discovered what I foolishly thought was way to maintain my balance.  Pain killers, they create a soft barrier between you and the world, not enough to immobilize me but enough to keep the anxiety in check without having to tell anyone about the panic attacks or the real reason behind the sleepless nights.

To be fair they did what I wanted them to but they also did something I didn’t expect; they distanced me from ALL strong emotions not just the anxiety.  I didn’t realize what was happening at the time but I was withdrawing from those around me, including my husband. I gave him no chance to help because I never told him I needed it.  Somehow I managed to convince myself that as long as I was able to leave the house, go to work, make meals, look after my son and support my husband with his university and sport then I was fine.  A huge lie of course, totally aside from the fact that carrying a codeine addiction around isn’t something you can hide for any length of time, there was a larger problem.  I was still fracturing under the surface only this time I was utterly unaware of how close I was to a tipping point.

ending_freelance_01As anyone can probably guess my marriage ended, I didn’t even really put up a fight because all my energy was being directed to not completely collapsing at the thought of losing Matt.  I don’t know if things would have been different but I regret deeply that I never had the courage to tell him what was going on in the last 12 months.

We had loved each other, very much actually and had always had a lot of fun together.  He was one of the few people I had met who appreciated my somewhat dry sense of humor as he had one quite similar and I enjoyed the way his mind worked.  Too many people have trouble making mental connections from point A to point D without requiring steps in between, he didn’t which was fun for me as I hadn’t met many others like me before.  However in those last 12 months I was more of a photocopy of the girl he knew and one who was becoming more of a stranger each day. Between financial problems [drug addictions even legal ones are expensive after all], my lying about the money situation and my withdrawal into myself he was left with really nothing to work with and so eventually he left.

My son stayed with me which was the only true joy I had in the midst of everything.  He was such a clever boy [yes I know all parents think their children are amazing] and so much fun to play with and here is the second chance I had to halt what was coming.  If I taken the chance to reach out to family or even a professional to help me understand what was happening to me a great deal may have been different.  I thought there must be something so very wrong with me, as a person not medically, because I couldn’t cope with things that others seemed to deal with easily.  The anxiety continued to grow as did the sense of isolation.  Both my parents were still working, my sister in another state and in the first year after our separation Matt was a little sporadic in taking Michael to stay with him.  He would have if I had pressed the issue as he loved his son so very much but I was still of the mentality that explaining why I needed some extra help was somehow going to make everyone think I was weak and a failure.

Shattering-Glass1-819x1024Fast forward a little further in time and you’ll find me superficially going through the motions of life but underneath the utter desperation was growing along with such a sense of exhaustion.  I’d been battling myself for most of my life and in full-out war with myself for at least 3 years, it was inevitable what happened.  I broke, shattered is probably the best word and in doing so I just quit.  Suicide can seem like a reasonable choice, especially when you deny yourself the luxury of any pity.  In my mind my son deserved better than a weak mother who couldn’t even control her emotions and needed drugs to do get through the day without a panic attack.

Well obviously that didn’t end as I planned it to seeing as I am here all these years later writing about it.  What came next was in a way worse.  Still not telling anyone about the anxiety, the panic attacks, the assault from years before I was diagnosed as bi-polar and the medication they put me on fractured my sense of reality.  Two years of trying to get my life back so I could have my son back, seeing him only on the weekends and floundering in a world I didn’t recognize any more only to fail again and again.

Eventually I stopped the medication but didn’t seek further help and did what so many think will fix things, I moved.  Only problem was when I moved I came with me and fairly quickly things escalated out of control.  The anxiety grew a life of its own, within a few months I was unable to leave the house without full-blown panic attacks and sleep and I became distant friends.  My father or mother would pick up my son and drive to Toowoomba so I could visit but even that became almost impossible.  How can you explain that you don’t want to go out to lunch or the park without telling just why that is?  Once again I had a chance to reach out and explain but Pride born of fear and doubt silenced me yet again.  Lying was a habit by this point but Oh I wish I had told Matt why I kept cancelling my visits with Michael but he had a new wife and a new life and I hated the idea of them knowing just how much of a mess I was. [as if it wasn’t perfectly obvious]

Fading__by_ilsilenzioFoolish wasn’t it, they thought so much less of me because they had no idea why I was slowly fading from Michael’s life.  They never even knew that I’d been misdiagnosed and that a portion of the problems that I’d had in the last few months in Brisbane were as a result of a chemical psychotic break due to a medication that actually exacerbated my problems.

All they believed, all they knew until recently, was that I was mentally unstable and selfishly using it as an excuse to miss visits with my son. So I stopped calling, stopped going to Brisbane to watch him play sport and for a good long time there stopped doing anything except survive each day.  I convinced myself it was for the best, every time I thought of Michael the pain would rip through me like a knife and by body would instantly start producing severe pain in an attempt to stop me feeling any emotion at all.

So in the end I stopped thinking about anything and simply read my brain into oblivion, plowing through up to 8 or 9 books in a 24 hour period [speed reader – always have been but it increased dramatically during that period] and continued to self medicate with pain killers.

My father would still drive to Toowoomba but it would be to take me shopping as I couldn’t even leave the house to do my groceries without passing out by the time I reached the letterbox.  Years passed like that until one day I could no longer even sit on the veranda of the house and something inside me snapped, I got angry so very very angry and before I could fall back into the fog I made some calls.  Finally I spoke to a professional about what had happened in the past and how I had ended up with an addiction to pain killers and exactly what had been happening to me for years.  It was the right thing to do as it seems I’d been suffering from post traumatic stress disorder manifesting itself in extreme anxiety and hyper vigilance for well over a decade, all of which was treatable and all of which was not my fault.

Escape from the darkI wasn’t weak merely human and damaged but even then my pride this time born of shame kept me from reestablishing connections with my family and friends.  Slowly, oh so very slowly I left behind the pain killers and the ant-anxiety medication and learnt to meditate and practice mindfulness techniques to keep the panic at bay when it started to rear its head [as it still does to this day].

Bit by bit taking back pieces of my life and forging them into something new, someone stronger because I understood finally that needing help or feeling helpless didn’t make me weak.  Sadly I still couldn’t bring myself to reach out to Michael, I couldn’t even begin to think how to explain what had happened and make him understand how desperately I had missed him and how very much I loved him.

I knew my being absent for all those years had hurt him, how couldn’t it have.  Matt and Sarah loved him, had been there when I wasn’t and that too hurt on a level that is almost impossible to describe.  What sort of mother would have done what I did and so I was too ashamed to face them as well.  The longer it drew on the harder it became.  I would find myself siting in the early hours of the morning looking at the photos of him that I had collected from everyone and watched him grow up, picture by picture, without me in any of them.  So I waited, I’m not sure even today for what I was waiting but when it came I acted and was given a chance I probably don’t deserve to know my son as he is today and he is wonderful.  I’m so proud of him and so very grateful for the chance he has given me and also to Matt and Sarah for helping him be the person he is now despite the damage I must have done.

9c47711f43613182241a65bdec29c814It’s the reason why I’m writing this because I can’t keep carrying this pain in my head anymore not if I want to have a real relationship with him. Somewhat like lancing the poison from a wound these words record my fall, the choices I made to isolate myself and the price I paid for that isolation in the loss of a decade of my son’s life.  Obviously there is more to the story that what I have covered here but what I have written covers the places where I could have reached out and didn’t, as I said in a previous post it’s about choices made and prices paid.

Others have paid their own price for my choices but I cannot speak for them only myself. I’m not the person I was then and I’m not the girl who became that person, I’m something new, something stronger and something much more real than I have ever been.  So thank you for sharing my walk down memory lane, this doesn’t change the past but it may let me leave it in the past so that I can give all of myself to the present and the future.

51 thoughts on “Memory Lane

  1. ‘All they believed, all they knew until recently, was that I was mentally unstable and selfishly using it as an excuse to miss visits with my son’

    this is delightfully in the present. there is something both foreboding and fantastic about getting to the core of who we are and this is articulated so genuinely, so real – thank you for such inspiration.

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      • Completely, we tend to shelter ourselves – at least I do, for one because often times we think people are bored with our pain, and sometimes they are; however, it ought not be minimized, and the truth is far more invigorating than living behind a facade. I do not like the association of – in my case – ‘depression’ with being ‘weak’ and I don’t believe anyone need accept that. We do have responsibilities, all of us, but we also need to be recognized as human beings. Take care, and I apologize for the rant! I just think your words are so important.

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      • Never apologize for a rant – I’m rather fond of them myself. It’s true how easily people can assume that those who have depression or any kind of mental health issue are somehow weak. It’s as if they think you want to feel that way otherwise you’d ‘buck up’ and get better. It’s demoralizing and worse when we do it to ourselves. I think I hated myself for breaking, I’d always been proud of my control and my intellect and when my mind let me down [from my perspective at the time] I turned all the loathing inward. Time has taught me better but I do still suffer from the perceptions of others I just no longer care what they think.

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      • Indeed, sorry to say it was a political convention that put it in my head, but my solid quick mantra the last few years has been and continues to be ‘keep going forward’ – love your writing, take care! – Thom

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  2. I’m impressed that you are able to put yourself out there in such a manner. I couldn’t do it, and I haven’t had the trauma that you’ve been through. I wish you the best, all the best. I have a sister who is kind of in the same situation, and honesty comes at a price for her. Much respect and support, Jenni.

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    • I’m glad you found something of worth in this post, it was a little more than unsettling to write – necessary in a way but still uncomfortable. Thank you for your words they mean a lot. Jenni xxx

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  3. That was very powerful and gripping Jenni. It took a lot of guts to write and publish this post, especially given the fact that you identified sharing your emotions as a large part of the problem. We share a common heritage (from way back) – British. What you describe is, in my observation, very typical of that social structure. Seeking help has been, in the past, viewed as a weakness. This is blatantly false and has (again in my observation) created many issues. There isn’t any way I can understand the horrors you’ve been through but I have to say, your experiences strike me as intolerable for any human being. The abuse and the fear and the misdiagnosis and the emotional isolation, and on and on. It blew me away that you had the personal strength to turn that around and address the very things you feared (rightfully) the most. I doubt very much that I would have had that much strength. And the most impressive was that even when everyone had given up on you, you turned it around with your own effort. It was your decision and your initiative and your focus that allowed you to enlist others to help. And even this post – none of us would have ever even guessed from your intelligent, even-handed, thoughful, insighhtful approach to your work and blog, that you were suffering so inside. Again, it was your strength you used to open your self and your vulnerabilities to the world. Thank you for your trust, I am honored.

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    • It is a handy skill but a bad habit to be able to put things to the side and keep going with what needs to be done. As with most things moderation as well as insight into why you do it is the key. It’s been a long time since I let it blind me from what was really happening in my life since doing so crippled me in the past. However when something has become part of your psyche for so long it never truly goes away so I’ve learnt to live with it and keep myself aware of when I may be distancing myself from things for no reason other than mental habit. Thank you for understanding that sharing weakness or pain is akin to standing in the middle of the street naked, actually for me it’s probably worse than that. But I needed to not just get past this part of my life, which I had, I needed to be able to place it squarely there in the past and not let it taint things now. I’m glad you can understand the mindset also as some people may have trouble with the ‘British’ approach to things. Hope to see you here this weekend for the funny challenge as well as life needs laughter.

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  4. Jenni I just hope your son sees this, reads it and understands. You’ve had a tough time and you’ve come through the other side and I hope this reaches out and gives you the ability to talk to your son as you have spoken here. You know that we (I think I can speak for those who follow you) are rooting for you and are there to be a sounding board for you with all the support we can offer. You’ve done well to make it this far and for those few more steps (though probably the hardest) you know you aren’t alone.

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    • Thank you so much for your support. I have spoken with Michael in general about what was covered here but not the specifics. Part of this is for him as well as for me as he can read it and think about things without having me sitting in front of him waiting for a response. The other part of it – the larger part is that it needs to be done because if I’m to avoid tainting the relationship we’re building now I can’t have this poisoning my emotions any longer. Whether others understand it or not it’s time for me to leave the past firmly behind me. I thought I had really but speaking with my son and getting to know him over the past few months has brought some things to the surface that need to be offloaded so I can go forward. It’s is wonderful to read your words and the support you offer as it means a great deal to me.

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  5. You certainly aren’t alone. The single-minded determination to be self-sufficient and indestructible, the shame and guilt when the impossible proved impossible, the self-contempt at what you thought was weakness… I know. The fact that you’ve emerged on the other side as the intelligent, articulate and perceptive person you are is a tribute to a strength few of us have, don’t ever doubt it. The courage to talk about it – that’s just plain inspiring.

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    • Thank you – it means a great deal to have that understanding and support. Some things need to be left in the past but until given a place or a voice they tend to linger and if not dealt with can taint the future. I’m glad you found something of worth in my words and I’m also grateful that you understand how a person can become lost and think themselves weak and a failure.

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  6. First and foremost Jenni well done for sharing that is a huge step. You have been through so much lost so much true but you have come through. As you say sadly you missed many chances to turn the corner, to receive help but turned it down and wondered of piest.
    We have all done this in varying degrees. The whole point is you have made it you finally opened up to your loved ones… Did they reject you as you had feared No they did not.
    I have suffered from physically and mental pain and lent on prescription drugs .. I even went through 3 months withdrawal… Like you I have been helped nu mindfulness and can recommend an amazing book if you are interested. So I speak with some knowledge as to how hard you have had to work, how painfully you have hauled yourself across the coals.
    Keep going you are doing great this blog is trstiment to that. I have not been following you very long so I don’t know if this I’d your first ‘opening up’ here on wordpress or to friends and family . If it is keep it up,if it is not keep it up. Bravo you have done so well , come so far. Again well done . from one sufferer to another I give you my hand in support. God bless keep well and be happy . xxc

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    • Thank you so much and yes the name of that book would be wonderful. I’m always interested in different ways to approach the topic as it doesn’t pay to get complacent with things like that. Just like medication it can begin to lose its effectiveness over time if not kept fresh and positive. I try to balance this blog with personal insights into situations, social commentary, obviously some humor for the weekend and then from time to time the more personal pieces. It’s an interesting journey life and I’m just so glad that I’m now able to appreciate the path I’ve taken.

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      • The name of the book is Living well with with Pain and Illness. I knew as soon as she starte talking about her pain and operations on her back that she knew what she was talking about and she could easily of been describing me. I have found her tapes and books so helpful , so has my eldest son who had a persistent ( still ongoing ) pain from injury caused to the Femoral nerve.
        The Author is Vidyamala Burch http://www.breathworks-mindfulness.org.uk/meet-vidyamala . I bought the book and some tapes on Amazon but that is of course up to you but they truly have helped me.

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      • I’ll have a look – all information is worthwhile I’ve found and it never pays to think there aren’t new ways to approach things. Thank you

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  7. “Bit by bit taking back pieces of my life and forging them into something new, someone stronger because I understood finally that needing help or feeling helpless didn’t make me weak.”
    I still struggle with this realization. Thank you for sharing this with us Jenni. I felt as though I was reading my own story. I’m so glad that you and your son are reconciling and forging a new day together.
    I’ve lost a daughter and still haven’t been able to find the right words to attempt a renewed relationship. Your words are so inspiring to me and I may just take that plunge, although I have no idea where to start or what to say.
    Thank you again. You are a true inspiration.
    Much love and hugs to you
    Tee ❤

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    • Oh Tee I’m sorry to hear about your relationship with your daughter. I know just how hard it is to try and find the words to explain things you barely understand yourself and then endless back and forth of WHAT IF – if there is ever anything I can do or any advice, shoulder to cry on just let me know. It is a hard thing to live with and an even harder issue to face.

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      • Jenni you already have made the hurt more bearable by breaking the silence and sharing your story.
        Everything I play out in my mins sounds like nothing more than excuses. I stand on sinking sand with any exchange. I think about her and cry over her everyday.
        Any advice would be more than welcome……

        I do hope you understand that your post has helped me face just one of my many demons.

        <.3

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      • I know the feeling – I would think of Michael and it would just rip into me and I would slam a wall down – like a mental panic room I guess because if I didn’t I’d just collapse and I couldn’t let myself do that. I don’t know how old your daughter is as it would make a difference as to how I would approach it. I think part of what I was waiting for was for Michael to be old enough and away from his father and Sarah [who really hates me – BIG TIME] so that I could talk without tripping over their issues with me along with his. If you haven’t spoken for awhile it may be worth writing to her if she would read it and it would be taken from her by anyone who could use it against you or her. It’s so bloody scary, I know, it’s almost enough to make you want to run back into the dark because with dealing with emotions and the fallout from them you have to accept that there may be things that you may have lost regardless of the true circumstances. I’m Michael’s mother now but not his parent if you can appreciate the difference, too much time has passed for that to change and he is also old enough that to try would be simply hurtful to all I think. How old is your girl? I should have asked that first up really.

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  8. “As I grew it turned into a point of pride for me. The ability to continue with life, put things aside, compartmentalized my emotions became a defining trait but one that came with a price, I learnt to lie and lie very well so that no one would think there was anything wrong and superficially of course that appeared to be the case.”

    I don’t think I have ever read something that has rung so true with me. Though I am still young, I have come to know the art of hiding true feelings, or rather, eliminating them altogether, so I want to just let you know how incredibly strong you are in writing and sharing your story. It truly is remarkable to hear about other’s stories as it is that subtle reminder that no matter how isolated one can feel, we are never alone in this world. We are connected by our experiences, good or bad, and I think that is more powerful than any scar, be it visible or not.

    As you can see in the title of my blog, I believe that “the power lies in your words”, and you, my dear, have outstandingly strong words.

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    • It’s strange how we can take that which has damaged us and make it something that forges us into a stronger person. Thank you for taking the time to read my words and I’m glad you found something of worth in my writing. It is too easy sometimes to confuse controlling your emotions with suppressing them. One is a useful tool the other is a damaging habit that leads nowhere good. Once learnt however it can’t be undone so now I work at making sure that if I am distancing myself from a difficult emotion it is because it is the right way to deal with it not just a means of escaping dealing with it.

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  9. I recently read a story about a young lady who spent 10 years trapped in the diagnosis of schizophrenia until one day instead of people (including herself) always asking ‘what is wrong with you?’ someone finally asking ‘what happened to you?’ That was the turning point of unravelling childhood trauma she had buried.
    I admire your courage in writing this post.

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  10. “I thought there must be something so very wrong with me, as a person not medically, because I couldn’t cope with things that others seemed to deal with easily.” “explaining why I needed some extra help was somehow going to make everyone think I was weak and a failure.” This wasn’t just a figment of my imagination; people who mattered to me TOLD me that there was something wrong with me, and that I was weak and a failure. I continue to push myself too hard, to avoid being weak and a failure, which led me to being extremely weak, and failing to meet anyone’s expectations.

    “given a chance I probably don’t deserve to know my son as he is today and he is wonderful. I’m so proud of him and so very grateful for the chance he has given me” [I’m choked up] Can our kids be more precious than after we have lost them, for whatever reason? People might think that I cherish my kids too much; maybe it is because I am so glad to be reunited with them.

    “I’m not the person I was then and I’m not the girl who became that person” “I do still suffer from the perceptions of others I just no longer care what they think.” 🙂 I am delighted that you have come to this place and time.

    “Some things need to be left in the past but until given a place or a voice they tend to linger” How ironic. I find the same: I must leave wounds behind, but first, I must record them. Writing them out is like surgery: the wound feels deeper, but the cleaning facilitates the healing.

    “what I was waiting for was for Michael to be old enough and away from his father and Sarah [who really hates me – BIG TIME] so that I could talk without tripping over their issues with me along with his.” I know this situation well. Tough decisions when I felt too much shame to confer with others, thus I didn’t know what the outcomes might be from my decisions. When I finally did confer with others, they were so blown away by my story, they advised me to abandon my kids! My father had abandoned me for a while when he and my mother couldn’t get along. I learned from that. I knew the pain of getting no greeting cards or gifts from him for years. I didn’t let my kids go through that. I insisted on keeping in touch with them, using the support of the court. The wisest thing that I heard was to keep telling my kids that I loved them, whatever way I could, and never seek such a response in return. I think that this was the key that kept the door open between us.

    Dear Jenni, I am glad that you have found more peace now.

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    • Thank you – your advice and support from the previous post meant a great deal as do your words in this one. Thanks for your good wishes and thoughts. Jenni

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  12. I read your post twice and am so moved by it. Most of the time I have something to say after reading someones story all I can say is thank you for sharing. Thank you for putting it out there so others can be learn. You are an amazing person.

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    • Thank you for your support – sharing things is a difficult thing to do but it is I think important to pass on what lessons you learn so that someone else might know they are not alone.

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      • You are welcome. I agree about finding it difficult to share things. I have never, since childhood, been able to find words to share my emotions or feelings. As you say it is good to write about it to help others with what you have learned. I am learning each day to open up more. 😀

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  13. I’m saddened to read that you believe I “really hate (you) – BIG TIME”.
    There’s been a lot of anger over the years, certainly – especially as it was usually me who had to console a frequently disappointed little boy – but never hatred.
    The most predominant feeling has been incomprehension. I’ve never understood how he was not enough motivation for you. In my own battles with depression, the one thing that made me get out bed and seek help was the fact that that little boy needed me. I fought to be strong for him.
    My number one priority has – and always will be – what is best for him. That has always included you being in his life. I wanted very much for us to be friends. Perhaps I should have tried harder.
    I’m glad you’re finding peace with your past and I sincerely hope you can rebuild a relationship with him.
    S

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    • I can only speak for myself and do not suggest in any way that you behaved toward me in a negative manner deliberately. Most of what I felt was based on my own opinion of myself BUT I will maintain that the sense of judgement and condescension was there from the get go whether you meant it or not. However the past is something neither of us can do anything about as much as I am sure both of us would like to, even if only to understand each other so as to be their for Michael. I will never, never hold you in anything other than high regard for what you did for my son when I was too weak to do it myself. Regardless of anything you and Matt did an amazing job as he is a wonderful boy and growing into an amazing man. I lived in fear and shame for such a very long time, anxiety so overwhelming that nothing made sense and I still do not know today if my absence from Michael’s life was better for him or not as I was a very broken person Sarah, so b

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    • Sorry hit the wrong key on the keyboard. What I was trying to get at is even now with everything I’m not sure I should have been there but what I do know is that you and Matt should have known why and been able to make a decision as to how to address it with Michael. I don’t know if he will forgive me but he has let me in to his life and I won’t be disappearing again – I’ve changed quite a bit over the years and come to terms with a lot more than you may think. I’m not the girl I was, nor the broken person I became and I hope that as time goes on we can come to an understanding of each other. Thank you – I’ve never had the chance [or the guts] to actually say that to you but thank you for raising a boy capable of making the effort to understand and possibly forgive.

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    • I’ve been thinking since I replied to this before and reading what I said I feel as if I’ve been a bit too combative in the way I worded things. Being defensive is obviously still a bit of a habit with me but it isn’t really the way I should have responded. I would like – if possible – to find a way to open a line of communication with you so that perhaps we could get to know each other a little better and in doing so maybe find an understanding between us. If you don’t feel you can I would more than understand it but perhaps we should try. I hope all is well with your family and take care until we speak again. Jen

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  14. Pingback: Infinity Dreams Award | Weaver Grace

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