I stayed quiet about the pandemic. Everything that needed to be said was being said. I was focusing on my life, my son, my job and my new relationship. I was investing in my future. I was enjoying the downtime. I was also missing friends and family. I was looking for something or someone to fill the void. And when something unexplainable came along, I jumped in head first without thinking.
I sparkled. I laughed. I shared. If you have learned anything about this blog, it’s that blogging is how I process my feeling. When I am happy and fulfilled, I don’t need this outlet. And that is what I was. I was also ignoring some red flags. That is my issue. I am a fixer. I want to fix people. So when I see issues, I dive in. I emotionally invest. I fall head over heals in love. I take them and their baggage and I try to make it perfect. I have yet to learn, that you can not fix people. They have to fix themselves. They have to heal before they can truly love again. This is the hard learned lesson that I will take into 2021.
I have learned something this past 8 months, love can not conquer all. Love does not always win. I know he loves me and I love him but that is not enough. I have had sometime this week to digest this. I have really thought about this last 8 months. I have never been this happy. I have also never been this out of control. I have made some bad decisions. I have let my business take a back seat. I have let my friends be second place. I did not watch my spending. I have not been living a health lifestyle. I was changing to fit where I should not have wanted to fit. But that something unexplainable was so hard to resist. The flutter of my heart won. I lead with my heart and not my mind. I tried to fix what was not mine to fix.
If someone is still dealing with unresolved issues from their past, they will never be able to truly invest in you. They will always hold back. Not all the time, but that broken part of them will never let you fully in. It hurts. It makes you worry. It makes you anxious. It also makes it easy for them to walk away without saying goodbye. If they have not dealt with their past, how can you expect them to properly deal with their present. It is easier to ignore then to dive in and deal with it. And so he drove away from my house with his stuff without even saying goodbye. Just closed the door, got in his car and drove away as if what we shared meant nothing. Not even goodbye.
This is why you always listen to the red flags. I am saying that to myself. Not you. But you should listen too. It might save you the heartache that I am going through. It might save you some time. It might save you.
Always listen to the red flags.
ALWAYS LISTEN TO THE RED FLAGS.
DAMMIT, I didn’t listen!!! I saw the flags but the connection was so strong that I thought we could get past them and for the most part we did. His past is his to deal with but it bleed into our life together. When he couldn’t face it, we drank too much wine together. He didn’t want to deal with it and I wanted him to forget his problems, so I joined in on the fun, much more often than I should have. It was changing me into someone that I didn’t like. My life was a little more chaotic, my home was a little messier and my physical health was taking a back slide. My anxiety was at an all time high. My mental health was teetering. And I was choosing him over me.
That is all just a small part of this. Moving forward after divorce is complicated and hard. It is not just you, it’s your kids. Meshing two lives and two families is hard. There are issues and difference and sometimes those differences are too much. I have the most amazing small boy. He is sweet and kind and smart and funny. He also has severe ADHD and Sensory Processing Impulse Control Disorder. That can make things difficult when you add three additional small children to the mix. Personalities collide and his reactions can be a little larger than life. Small things can become a explosive. He needs to be monitored and redirected. He makes mistakes. He lashes out. He is a rambunctious 7 year old. And I love him more than life itself.
He is my special small boy and I will never put someone else’s needs before his. When ask to talk with him and get his reactions in line, the only thing I can do is say “I’ll try!” That was not good enough and I will not make promises he can’t keep. Sensory children are different. All children act out. Sensory children act out without having control of those actions. When I ask my sweet boy why he pushed a child and held them down, the response brings me to my knees. It breaks my heart. In tears, he said to me, “I don’t know. My good brain was whispering and I couldn’t hear it. And my bad brain was yelling at me. I just wanted it to shut up so I did what it said. That is the only my way to make it quiet.” I would do anything to help this sweet boy. I would give anything for him not to fight with his bad brain but those are the cards we have been dealt. To love me, is to love my kid without reservation and without limitation. To realize, accidents will happen. He can only be asked to do what he is capable of doing. I wish I could change this for him. I wish I could change this for us but I can’t. And I will not put unrealistic expectation on my child and set him up for failure. I will not be made to feel like he is dangerous. He is a sweet small boy with an extra special brain.
You see, the thing is, to me, he is perfectly imperfect, the way God intended him to be. So, what does that mean? It means that he needs love and understanding and his Mama to always put him first. He needs his Mama to advocate for him. His Mama to put he wants and needs before her own. It is so hard. Today, I feel broken. Today, I feel lonely. Today, I want to cry and scream and fix it all but somethings can not be fixed.
When you don’t understand my child, you can not forgive the outbreaks and that is not a healthy place for anyone to be. It makes me helicopter over my child and my anxiety rubs off on him and his sensory issues go into over drive. It is not a good place for us to be. So, me and this amazing small boy will move forward. We will miss the bonds we made and the laughter of a full house. We will miss the late night movie fests and the early morning chaos. We will miss them. In the end, we will be okay. We will be better than okay but it may take sometime to get there.
Life has a lot of twist and turns. Sometimes we go left when we should have gone right. Sometimes we make mistakes. Now is the time to take the lessons I have learned and be better in the future. I will allow myself time to cry. I will allow my son to miss his friends. I will show grace and give extra snuggles and I will probably jump back behind that wall. I didn’t protect him. His little heart got hurt in the midst of my relationship and that is not fair. I didn’t trust my gut and I put my small boys heart at risk and that is not right. I did not do my best job as his Mama. And for that, I am truly sorry. I hope he knows how much I love him. I hope he knows Mama’s make mistakes too.
I am not sure how you date and form bonds with someone and risk your heart without involving your child, because ultimately, the other persons thoughts or actions with your child can make or break a relationship. It is hard. It is complicated. It is confusing. You never know until you try but with each try, you risk your child. Why does this have to be so hard? And lonely? And so confusing? Maybe one day I will figure it out.
For now, I’ll just sit in it. I’ll feel the pain and the heartbreak. I’ll take some time to heal. After a wonderful New Years Eve and Day with my kiddo, he has gone back to his Dad’s house. Tonight, I was supposed to be celebrating the new year with drinks and football with my love, but I sit here alone. Love can not conquer all. The house is eerily quiet. It seems so large and overwhelming. I know this place. I have been here before. I don’t like it but I will straighten my crown. I will show myself grace. I will sit in my feelings. I will move forward. And, I will remember, in the midst of chaos, sparkle. Don’t let life dull your shine.
The Manicured Mom