Processing The Weekend

This week was wonderful and sad.  It was full of joy and full of heartache.  Isn’t that just like real life?  We don’t all live in fairy tale land where everything is perfectly wrapped up each and every holiday with a nice little ribbon.  We live real. 🙂  And REAL is what matters in life.

The great things about the week:
1. Uncle Bob came.  We LOVE our Uncle Bob. He has been a steady in  our lives and the lives of our boys  since Mike and I married, and in the girls lives since they came home.  He is a LOVING and KIND uncle who has invested in them and they ALL adore him.

2.  We had Sweetie 1’s boyfriend’s family over for Thanksgiving. We all had a wonderful time!  Our son and daughter in law and 4 of our grand children came for Thanksgiving dinner.
Our youngest grandson Felix somehow managed to find my personal Christmas present while taking a nap in my room and managed to empty an entire bottle of lavender essential oil in my room.  LOL
Oh the aroma!
I love toddlers!

3.  The meal was fantastic, if I don’t say so myself. 🙂  I am a stuffing lover and the stuffing turned out great.  That makes me happy.

4.  Sweetie 2 and 3 and my daughter in law and I slipped away to a Starbucks on Thursday night and had a great conversation.

5.  On Friday, we went over to our son’s house and all the guys were there that live in Texas, with 10 of our grand children.  It was a wild and happening place!  Sweetie 2 cleaned up on the game of Hearts. 🙂

6.  I talked with our grand daughter Lillian from NM.  And then I talked with our son too.  I love all of them so much.  I miss them, but honestly, I’m glad they live in NM… It is a GREAT place and it gives me reason to go back to NM!   I loved it when we lived there.

7.  Sweetie 1 turned 17 and was a great sport that her birthday landed on Black Friday. 🙂  We did our traditional celebration, (see post below) and she had a good birthday. 🙂

8.  My daughters’ in law made GF desserts!!!!  Whoa baby!
I didn’t have to say, “No, I can’t have that. ”  🙂

9.  We decorated for Christmas and watched the traditional
“Miracle On 34th Street”  with Natalie Wood and Maureen O’Hara.
10.  I was able to take the Sweeties to movie while I visited Sweetie 4 at the detention center.  It was perfect.  I dropped them off a little early, drove to see her, and by the time I got back, it was time to pick them up. 🙂

And now to process the not so great stuff:

1.  This is the first year we have had a Thanksgiving where I didn’t call my mom.  She passed away in August.  I honestly have not had a real chance to grieve, as things have been so intense and difficult, anytime I showed any emotion, Sweetie 4 would get angry.  I tried so save my emotions for bath time where I could have privacy.

2.  My sister in law is back in the hospital and the news is not good. 🙁
She has been battling breast cancer for 18 years. It has been a long and courageous fight.  But the cancer has returned with a vengeance into her brain. 🙁  She spent Thanksgiving in the hospital surrounded by her family.  Our hearts are with her.

3.  Our dear sister in the Lord passed away last week from Leukemia
and we hurt for her children, dear friends of ours. We rejoice that her life was WELL LIVED and that she is with her Lord and Savior.

4.  I visited Sweetie 4 at the detention center on Monday and let her know that I would not be able to visit on Thanksgiving day. (a special visitation time was available between 1 and 3)  The detention center has a HUGE celebration with community leaders.  I just didn’t feel it would be right to drive an hour away, during which our other girls were at home, and arrange family time around detention time.
It is so surreal, having to think about these things. But the truth is, that she got herself into detention. She is not remorseful, and it is a situation she has created.  I think it would be wrong to make the other children work around the detention schedule.  They need to come first. They have committed no crimes and NEED our attention too.
So, I visited on Monday and told her I would not be able to visit on Thursday.  She said she didn’t know why I would visit anyway! She doesn’t want us to visit her.
I got a call on Friday night that she was placed on “moderate” suicide watch for “cutting”.  I don’t know what she used to cut, or scratch herself, but apparently she was covered.
I was told that she had a wonderful time at Thanksgiving, was smiling and happy and dancing.  But on Friday, she was not happy.
I went to visit on Saturday and she was angry.  She came to see me but once again asked, “Why are you here? I don’t think you should come to see me.”
I told her, ” You cannot tell me that I can’t come to see you.  You can refuse to see me when I come, but I WILL come, because I love you.”
She asked, “Why?”
WHY? Why do I love my own daughter?  She is the daughter that God placed in our family. We have poured our lives into her for nearly 5 years.  She is beautiful, and can be sweet and kind. She is a great artist, and she can be funny.  She is smart and has a future ahead of her if she will grasp it!
I told her, “You are my daughter, I choose to love you!”
She grimaced.
Not a lot of eye contact was made. She was rough in her speech and told me of some issues she was having and how she didn’t want to participate in the program she has been blessed with.
I asked her about her cutting and she refused to show me her cuts.
She said she was going to get off of suicide watch so she could have coke and candy. (They were allowed this this weekend)
As we talked, the time passed quickly, and I realized that the center gave us an extra FORTY minutes past what we are typically allowed.
(They are really wonderful people)
I told her that I had to go because I had to pick her sisters up from the movie. She said, “You hang up first.”  I said, “No!” “We’ll hang up together and I counted to 3 and we both hung up our phones at the same time. ”  I saw a smile come across her face.  🙂

I left the detention center trying to hold it together.  I don’t even know how to process where she is emotionally.  She is doing her best to reject us.  So much was said, so much I can’t even process.
I’m hoping that she is going to get through this and come out the other side, more mature, and ready to deal with life, however long that takes, and that eventually she will be able to safely be with us once again.
It is a hope.
Her bio sister wrote to her and she didn’t appreciate the letter very much. 🙁  We worked so hard to get them together, and she is so very willing right now to just throw relationships away.  She must be so angry and ashamed.
Trauma is a cruel ruler and a poor leader.

One thing we do know and rest in;
we love her and we have done all we can and will continue to do all we can, but the outcome will be up to her.
We cannot force her to do well, participate in the program or make wise choices. Those things are up to her.
She knows she is loved.  It is the brave thing to forgive those in our past and love those in our present.
Someday, I pray she is brave, and  sees how every much she has been loved.
I hope that day comes and it isn’t too late for her to share that love with those who truly love her.
Living a life of regrets would be so very sad.

We want to live our lives without regret!
We hope she follows the same path.

So, how are we doing?  We are honestly doing well!
The Sweeties have endured much as well as us and we are all processing what has happened.  We are close as a family and will continue to pray together and choose to love Sweetie 4.
There is much forgiveness, but that does NOT mean that we blindly accept violent behaviors into our home.
We MUST be safe and keep our other sweetie’s safe. We have this year to make some decisions on sweetie’s placement depending upon how she does in detention.
It is a path we never expected to walk, but one we are walking!
And we are walking it in faith and trust in the ONE who knows all things!

3 Responses to Processing The Weekend

  1. Annie says:

    I feel like I’ve been where you are so many times – torn between people who need me desperately, and those who need me greatly….and the “expectations” of a lot of other people (to say nothing of my own.)

    Maybe this is why I’ve come to hate holidays myself…. Nothing but expectations….many pulling me in contrary directions.

    You are my “ideal” mama – so somehow reading about your challenges gives me a sense of having company in the world which is a comfort. Thank you for sharing.

  2. chaika says:

    You and your family have been in my thoughts and will continue to be. I am so sorry for the pain and turmoil you have all experienced in the past year. My heart aches for your youngest daughter. She must feel so much shame and fear, all rooted in the trauma she suffered as a young child. It is easy to see why she is sabotaging relationships with the people who love her most: she believes she is not worthy of love. What a terrible legacy for her to carry with her.

    But I think she is so lucky to have you fighting for her, working with her, loving her through these extraordinarily difficult times. I admire you so much as a parent. (I used to post on FRUA years ago, and your words of wisdom, as well as your deep understanding and compassion toward your girls have always stayed with me.) I hope with all my heart that your much beloved sweetie will manage to work through all her pain and achieve her true potential. If that happens (and I truly believe it will), it will be due in large part to your love for her, your support, your choice never to give up on her. Bless your youngest sweetie. Bless you all.

  3. Melin says:

    You can see that there are people in the virtual world that think of you and your family with fondness. You are kind to keep us updated because in offering a measure of comfort to you, we build community that will be there for us, too. Because if a person doesn’t have a “story” , they eventually will. It’s not If, but When….

    It sounds like you think she will remain in care until this school year has ended? I pray that she has a moment, an hour, a day of complete clarity so she can commit to the hard work that she has only just begun. I also pray that she realizes that you, your husband and the girls are all on the SAME team. It’s got to be really awkward to be “that person” in the house who is not a success story by worldly standards. Still, I really believe this can be the start of something wonderful is she will only let it be. I hope they can tease out what part, if any, is an organic mood disorder versus chronic stress versus attachment related. Do you feel you have ruled out ARND? Life should have to be that hard when your 15.

    Keep doing you, Christie. I’m proud of how you are holding up.

Comments warmly welcomed!


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