I have many goals as a parent, one it that my kids grow up to have less baggage then I or their father.
This is not easy, as I am as fucked up as anyone, really.
In fact as my sister pointed out not long ago on face book:
We have a full set a baggage, including a steamer trunk, all monogrammed with custom name tags…
I would add we also have hat boxes and briefcases…
Yeah my sister and I scored on the toxic parent thing.
Daddy was an alcoholic.
Well she was a fucking loon…no really she was, certifiable.
I know at least 3 times when mom should have been in lock down.
I shit you not.
She never found recovery.
Although she is
much healthier since daddy died.
Daddy did not find “recovery” in the AA sense of the word.
But he did die sober. but he stopped drinking not
for recovery sake but because he was so sick from the chemo.
I know very very few folk who did not have some sort of toxicity in their lives growing up.
Think about it. do YOU know anyone who grew up in a healthy home?
I also know this if have learned anything about parenting it is this: i will fuck up. maybe not the way my folks did, but i will fuck up. my hope is that my kids just end up with carry on baggage instead of a full luggage set.
The head and I work to not make the same mistakes.
In fact we joke that if we do not know what to do about something,
We think “what would our folks do?”
Then we do the opposite.
and so far that has worked for us.
But I do worry, it is in my nature to worry and be afraid and sad and feel less than.
I am the classic ACOA ( adult child of an alcoholic)
And no, I do not use that to define me, I am so much more,
I am a mother,
A lover of Jesus
And now I can say I am a writer!
I have been in a 12 step program of recovery for 34 years…and over those years I have not always been a “grateful member” In fact it is damned unfair that my sister and I had to deal with the shit we did.
But it is what it is. And I know so much of who I am” the minister, the caregiver, the giving spirit is from that part of my life.
So would I change it?
Hell yeah I would. I would not want that for my self now,
I love my self to much to put up with it.
I most assuredly do not want it for my kids.
I want so so much more for them.
I do more than just the opposite of what my folks would do.
I work a strong program of recovery.
I am a woman of faith and we are raising my children in a religious community.
We do things that our folks did not do.
Like go to the county fair, my folks and the heads folks did not do that. Ever.
Our children know the truth about alcohol and drugs,
We TALK all the time about that stuff.
And we listen.
Even when we do not want to.
I am tired so i will end tonight with this:
This is what I want for my children, all of them
It is from a passage from the book I am reading right now:
“Little Woman” by Unitarian- Louisa May Alcott
Mother, do you have “plans,” as Mrs. Moffat said?’ asked Meg, bashfully.
‘Yes, my dear, I have a great many; all mothers do, but mine differ somewhat from Mrs. Moffat’s, I suspect. …
‘I want my daughters to be beautiful, accomplished, and good; to be admired, loved, and respected; to have a happy youth, to be well and wisely married, and to lead useful, pleasant lives, with as little care and sorrow to try them as God sees fit to send. To be loved and chosen by a good man (lets just say “person” huh?”) is the best and sweetest thing which can happen to a woman; and I sincerely hope my girls may know this beautiful experience.
It is natural to think of it, Meg; right to hope and wait for it, and wise to prepare for it; so that, when the happy time comes, you may feel ready for the duties, and worthy of the joy. My dear girls, I am ambitious for you, but not to have you make a dash in the world-marry rich men merely because they are rich, or have splendid houses, which are not homes because love is wanting. Money is a needful and precious thing-and, when well used, a noble thing-but I never want you to think of it as the first or only prize to strive for.
I’d rather see you poor men’s wives, if you were happy, beloved, contented, than queens on thrones, without self-respect and peace. ‘One thing remember, my girls; mother is always ready to be your confidante, father to be your friend; and both of us trust and hope that our daughters, whether married or single, will be the pride and comfort of our lives.’
Oh, it is late
Spirit of life, Holy One, Divine Love known by many names
and no name, one who is not bound by gender or form or ethnicity
the G*d Daughter
The Rock star
they are all such gifts from you, Holy One
I learn from them every day
I pray that my heart stays open to what you want me to learn from them.
I pray that they stay clean and sober
I pray that they grow in you.
I pray that they be open to all you have in store for them.
I believe you have such wonderful plans for them.
I pray for my self that I continue to give them back to you every day
That I am reminded they are not mine;
But their own persons.
I ask I BEG that they will some day live in a world of peace
I pray I BEG that they live in a would that accepts and loves
the different the other.
I ask that they grow in a world that cares for mother earth.
I pray that they have a planet to live on that is safe and clean.
Cover them with your love.
Protect them from the things I can not which is so very much.
May it be so
May it be so