Do you ever have those moments when you think ...I just can't do this anymore? I can't take another step forward. I don't know what else to do. I got nothing left! Yeah. Me too.
Last night I went to bed feeling defeated …like giving up. I just can’t not do this job anymore. I quit. There is nothing left in my bag of tricks. I’m usually pretty resourceful and intuitive when it comes to figuring out what my kids need, but I’m fresh out of ideas. In fact, I have too many ideas and can’t seem to make any concrete decisions. I'm dazed and confused. I just don’t feel like I have it within me to make another decision about another person’s life.
Red is afraid of failure.
I’m afraid of him failing.
I know that he needs support.
I’m afraid to let go of control.
I’m afraid that he will blame me when the shit all hits the fan.
“You forced me into this, now look whats happened,” he’ll say.
Well, what’s new? He blames me for everything that’s ever gone wrong in his life and gives me no credit for anything good that has ever happened.
The truth is the child is no longer a child. He can only be guided. We can push …but he can push back. He has legal rights now whatever the f*#& that means. Yes. I know we could go for guardianship. Of course, we would have to prove incapacity. There are definite pros and many cons. For now, we have Power of Attorney so that we can help guide him.
I can get together all the resources in the world, but he actually has to want them and accept them, and he is as stubborn as hell! He may not be smart enough to know exactly what to do, or how to get everything done, but he is damn sure smart enough to figure out how to get out of doing whatever he doesn’t want to do. He’s an expert at finding a backdoor -another way out.
The straw that led to my feeling of hopelessness last night was the fact that hubby left to go to Dallas for business. That gave Red the idea that he had free rein to wreak havoc in the house. He was the prickly needle who poked and prodded at Blue until he blew. It doesn’t take much, because Blue has zero tolerance or patience when it comes to his brother’s annoyances. The fighting between them is indeed a two-way street. The difference is, Blue doesn’t fight with his brother for pure entertainment of it. He’s usually trying to make a point or teach his big brother something. They are always trying to prove the other one wrong. The argument usually turns into someone knocking someone upside the head.
I had to pull out the crazy black woman on their asses after hubby left. I was simply in no mood. Every once in a while, I have to make them think I have completely lost my mind, so they will stop the non-sense in their tracks. Yes...this little five foot, nothing woman threatened to pull out a can of whoop-ass and start swinging their father’s belt in any which direction where there was a teenager in close proximity. If you don’t move…you lose. You best believe they took their butts directly to their prospective rooms.
Afterwards, I was the one who felt just whipped. I'm just so tired of the fights. All of them. I'm a lover not a fighter.
Unfortunately, I live in a houseful of mens, and mens love to fight. *In my Sophia from "The Color Purple" voice.
Before I could crack my eyes open this morning, Red is knocking at my door. I couldn't believe it. He usually does not get up that early. I tried to ignore it, but it got louder. When I didn’t get up to let him in, he starts rattling the door and pushing it. He was getting so loud, in comes little brother who hates to see him hassling me. So again, World War Three is about to break out at 7 o'clock in the freakin morning! Did I say my eyes were barely open?
On the way to school Blue says to me, “How much longer do we have to live like this? I want you to know, I’m not fighting with him on purpose just to upset you. I just can’t take the way he treats all of us anymore. He changes me. I’m different when I’m around him. I don’t feel like this around any other person.” I have to say, I feel the same way. I love Red and I have more patience for him than anyone else on this earth, but that doesn’t seem to matter anymore. I can't give him enough. He appreciates nothing. Nothing I do, makes his behavior any better.
When I get home, I'm sitting in my car as I do most mornings, in a stupor. I text my husband, “I’m done. I can’t do this anymore. You’re going to have to handle him.”
Moments later, Red pulls away with Transportation services. I realize he will be home again in just a couple of hours. He only has class today and nothing else. I literally cannot take it. I cannot have him here all day. And why should I have to leave my own house to avoid him?
It hits me. Call the high school and talk to Mr. M. to see if Red can come volunteer in his class this afternoon. Mr. M. runs the class for kids with special abilities at Red's old high school. Red used to volunteer in there before he graduated. Thank God Mr. M. agrees to have him come. I arrange to have Red dropped off there by transportation, so he can’t come home and refuse to go.
Hours pass. I don't hear from him and I am so thankful. I had enough time to get my head together to think about my next moves for him and do some research. Then, I actually took a break from thinking about his crap, showered, washed my hair and had a Stevie Wonder, Pandora station dance party. I can sing just like him you know ...in my shower anyway.
The phone rings. It’s Red.
“You know you were right Mom. This was a really good idea to structure my time doing something positive. I feel much better now that I’m here helping the kids and thinking about someone other than myself.”
Um ...who the hell is this and what have you done with my kid?
Well, holy crap! This boy is definitely a great smooth talker. He certainly knows the right thing to say. He gets that from his dad. Now, if he could only actually DO some of the right things on a regular basis, he may just get to live to see the age of 20.
During this conversation he was so lucid, it was a little strange. He also agreed that it’s a good idea to look at group homes until we find the right fit. He said, “I have to keep structuring my time so that I stay busy until we find the right place because I don’t want you to kick me out and I end up in a shelter. The food would probably be horrible there.”
I’ll believe it when I see it actually happen. In the meantime, I think I’ll have him put that all in writing. And I definitely know my next move.
The moral of this story ...just when you're about to give up. Don't. Or maybe you should give up as in, stop doing everything for them. The answers are coming. They may just be his to figure out. Sooner or later they have to own their own shit.
It's our job to lay the ground work. The foundation we laid will pay off.