Sunday, June 24, 2012

The story of mom

Most of my life my mother and I had a horrible relationship.  I’ve wondered for years why her and my father adopted me in the first place. I know my father’s motives were honorable. My mother’s however, I am sure was to obtain someone to control and for her own “social” acceptance.

In fact, I moved to the west coast to put as much distance between her and I as possible. When I was three, my mother’s mental health problems were diagnosed. She is a manic depressant, paranoid schizophrenic. As such for as long as I can remember she would take her medication for a few months, think she was cured and stop taking them and have a break with reality that often included her wanting to kill me and making attempts to do so.

What was not diagnosed was the fact that she is also a narcissist and I was her emotional food. She also was always the victim, able to distort reality to fit her need to be the victim, because nothing has been or is ever her fault. Because of this distortion I detested my father until I was in my 30’s because of the “truth” she fed me.

According to her my father came home from work one day, walked past the playpen I was in, walked to their bedroom, packed his suitcase, walked back down the stairs, breaking he favorite lamp in the process, walked past me once more and left. I was angry for him leaving me with her, and for the hell my childhood became. At 30 I drove 16 hours to finally ask him, and it was then I got the full story. Yes he broke her favorite lamp, yes he packed a bag and walked out and did not take me. However, I have to admit if I came home and found my spouse in bed with someone else I would take that as my marriage being over as well. He did not take me because in the sixties single men were never awarded custody of children especially girls. This is very true sadly, regardless of the best parent was, mothers always won.

She later married a second time when I was about ten to a nice man, but again could not remain faithful, and she finally left him. To this day, she only married him because I liked him. Not sure where that was born, but again such is her reality.

I was also expected to be the perfect child to make sure others perceived her as a good mother, provider, etc. Outside of witnesses everything wrong in her life was my doing, so as soon as possible. I enjoyed my life on the west coast and managed to speak to her only about once a week, and had her visit every other year. Which I dreaded.

Then approximately five years ago she broke her hip and my aunt wanted me to come home to help her recover. She at the time was only 61, but do to years of drinking and smoking 5 packs of cigarettes a day and never doing a damn thing any medical professional told her to do. So when he hip was replaced she was told she had the bones of an 80 year old woman.  As such, it took her months to recover and I was stuck in Indiana during it all. Once she was out of rehab and back home, I could finally come home and again put distance between her and I.

However, less than two weeks later I was once more driving back to Indiana. Now per my aunt she wasn’t acting right, and she wasn’t sure if her mental problems were acting up or if it was something else. At this point I was surprised no one there considered taking her to the doctor, but they did not so three days driving back and I took her to the emergency room.

It was then determined her blood pressure was dangerously high, as in at one point 238/194, and it went high times, and she was having a series of mini strokes. The doctors said due to the mini strokes her mind was affected, she had to stop smoking etc. she also could no longer live on her own, and he believed she had only a matter of months to live.  The affects to her mind was in the area of memory, and as such she was diagnosed with early dementia as well.

Initially, I believed the dementia might actually make her a nicer person, and ease the belief she has that the world owes her something. I was wrong, in fact for the next four plus years that area actually got worse. She demands things of people and truly believes we all owe it to her, regardless of what strain it puts on us emotionally, mentally and financially.

Her nasty mood and verbal abuse of people was so bad, that many times M would make was walk out of the room and away from her in order to stop her verbal assault. You see before I met M, I was guilted into moving her out here, since she had only a matter of months to live. I knew better than to agree to it when I did, but I did and for over five years, I have spent most of it wondering what the doctor meant when he said a few months cause she keeps going and going.

The past few months have not been so bad, she was in the hospital in January and almost died. The smoking has also contributed to her having COPD and heart issues, and despite every doctor telling her what changed she had to make she never did. In fact, the first month after she moved her, she told the home health nurse in front of me, she would do whatever the hell she wanted and if I continued to refuse to let her smoke in my home she would have her name removed from my birth certificate because I was just an adopted kid, not her real child.

That was the breaking point for me. Despite the terrible relationship between us I never once have said she was not my mother because I was adopted. When she said it something clicked in me and emotionally it shut off where she is concerned. I began making sure she was cared for because it was my obligation, not out of some strong mother daughter bond. Sad but true.

Once she nearly died, she has become nicer, and is not smoking. Though I am sure if someone would buy her some, she would. Again out of obligation M and I make sure she has what she needs, and visit her once a week or so. My aunt (also a naraccist) is under the impression she is in “control” because she pays the group home extras and has a POA etc. I let her believe what she wants, because it is easier to let her have her sense of grandeur than the fight with her. The POA was signed after the diagnoses of mother’s dementia and therefore it not legally binding, she also lives in Nevada, and we are on the west coast, as such the doctors call me for decisions etc.

Now, the doctors believe she may have bone cancer on top of it all. The hip replacement needs replaced again but the doctor believes her bones are so deteriorated that it would not hold either. The heart and lung problems continue to be an issue, etc. We will know about the cancer possibility on July 11th.

If in fact she has bone cancer she has stated she doesn’t want chemo etc, but wants to keep the pain management aspect in place. As sad as it sounds she has no quality of life, not if she has cancer it is only going to get worse, so I don’t argue against not having it treated and surprisingly my aunt agrees.

However, unlike my aunt I know what cancer does, at some point her care will require more than the group home can provide, and she is terrified of nursing homes. Therefore at the end she will likely end up here with M and myself, and we will obtain hospice care and home health care for when we are at work. This is where I am sure my aunt will have a fit, but despite my lack of closeness to mother, I can’t fathom sticking her in place that scares her to the point of not being able to function. So, I will hold up my obligation and make sure she is cared for, but it tires me emotionally and mentally.

So BC Mum there’s the reader’s digest condensed version of my mother.

Friday, June 22, 2012

Rest in peace my dear friend Steven (9/1961-6/2012)

This morning we got the sad news that a dear friend has lost his 8 month battle against pancreatic cancer. We have know for the last few days it was only a matter of time and the Cancer Institute of America in Tulsa were keeping him pain free, and at peace until the end came. It came at 9:02 am. (Tulsa time) with his dear Jenny by his side as she had been from the start.

I should explain, Jenny was not his wife, nor his romantic love interest, she was not related by blood by they were tied by a friendship most of us will never have the joy of experiencing. He cared for Jenny, provided for, and protected Jenny through anything. He was her rock, and in the end she was his.

Jenny is a kind and sweet soul, but naive in many areas, and it was Steven who always made she was alright. If she wanted something, he found a way to get it, if she needed something, he provide it. If she had a dream he made sure she could chase it.

Several years ago, she decided she wanted to be a concert photographer, and decided the only way to do that would be to move to Nashville. Steven packed up, transferred his job, took out a loan and together they moved from California to Nashville, and for the last several years he provided while she chased her dream.

Over the years, I came to view Jenny and Steven as a unit. You never got one without the other. And to me they were more than just friends, but also a part of our family. Due to distance and my foolish belief they would always be there, I did not stay I touch as often as I should have, did not tell Steven how much I cared, or how amazing he was as a human being, not only to Jenny but the world.

He had the rare ability to always make me laugh, and to offer a shoulder and a place to escape 5 years ago when I had to travel back home due to my mother’s health, and was there for 3 months. Each time it got to much for me, I jumped in my care and made the 4 hour drive to Nashville and would hole up with them until I felt rejuvenated and could go back to Indiana and face the mother issue.

He was a big strong teddy bear with a heart of gold. And now that heart has stopped beating. I hope he knows how much I cared and how deeply he will be missed. The world became a little darker today, when the news of his passing came.

As mourn Steven, I cry not only for the loss of his life, but for "his Jenny". I know she will make it through this, but I do worry about her, and she is hundreds of miles away. We have offered her a place if it is needed, or if she just needs somewhere for a few days to mourn and heal.

She has always referred to Steven as her angel, and I agree with her, he has been, thus, she has not lost her angel, he is now watching out for her from above, and he will live forever in our hearts.

Rest easy, my dear friend, you were taken much too soon from this world, but you are now in a better place without pain, and cancer free, with the angel wings we always knew you deserved.

This is how I choose to remember Steven,

and this is what cancer did to him in just 8 months

Saturday, June 16, 2012

For BC's Mum

      We are so sad to hear all that you are going through at the moment. If there is anything at all we can do please do not hestiate to ask. We do keep you in our thoughts and prayers.

         I have no great words to make things better for you, and can only imagine what you are going through with the man you love and him losing his memory little by little. Or the longing to go back to the way it was prior to a health issue take control. However, both M and I are pretty good listeners, and are here if for no other reason than to offer a shoulder and a person to vent to.

 I am one who often finds the best words are words others decide to put to music and share to the world. As I read your post I did think back to a time when I was sure nothing was ever going to be right in my life and that I was at my breaking point and could take no more. A friend of mine gave me a CD and told me to listen to the last song. I do so, and that song has stuck with me as what I listen to when I am close to breaking again. Not sure why but somehow it seems to help and remind me that I will not break and I will make it through.  So, I am going to share it with you.

One day you will by Lady Antebellum

You feel like you’re falling backwards
Like you’re slippin’ through the cracks
Like no one would even notice
If you left this town and never came back
You walk outside and all you see is rain
You look inside and all you feel is pain
And you can’t see it now

But down the road the sun is shining
In every cloud there’s a silver lining
Just keep holding on
And every heartache makes you stronger
But it won’t be much longer
You’ll find love, you’ll find peace
And the you you’re meant to be
I know right now that’s not the way you feel
But one day you will

You wake up every morning and ask yourself
What am I doing here anyway
With the weight of all those disappointments
Whispering in your ear
You’re just barely hanging by a thread
You wanna scream but you’re down to your last breath
And you don’t know it yet

But down the road the sun is shining
In every cloud there’s a silver lining
Just keep holding on
And every heartache makes you stronger
But it won’t be much longer
You’ll find love, you’ll find peace
And the you you’re meant to be
I know right now that’s not the way you feel
But one day you will

Find the strength to rise above
You will Find just what you’re made of, you’re made of

One day you will Oh one day you will

The Widget Update

      I do believe BC’s mum is correct, at times you can offer a hand and a better path, but the past is so ingrained into some that they may want something more, but be unable to break the bonds of the past. That is where we are with Widget.
            She says she wants more, but her actions do not always show that willingness to put forth the effort to do so. Yes, she did well in school this semester and I do believe she wants to graduate. However, I do not think she is as willing to continue to put in the blood, sweat and tears to accomplish the goal. Nor do I believe she truly sees the big picture.
            For example, she stated a few months ago she needed more space between her and her biological family, so M and I got a house further away, yet close enough if she wanted to see them she could do so. The only thing this initially accomplished was costing more in gas because she still went there daily and needed a ride home, and on the weekends from the time school as out on Friday until Sunday night we did not hear from her.
            Now she provided a variety of reasons for this. One being that school was out at 2:11 and I was at work until 5, and it wasn’t safe for her to be home alone. This excuse did not hold water due to us living in an extremely low crime area. In fact in the past 24 months there has been only two calls for police in our addition and both of those were for domestics at the same address, and those residents have since moved. We did have a house fire in our housing addition a couple weeks ago, but it was not arson but a kitchen fire that got out of control. He biological family however, lives in a higher crime rate, in fact that is why I agreed so easily to move. The area has gone primarily section 8.
            Please do not get me wrong I have nothing against people who need the assistance of section 8, and truly believe some do need the assistance. The sad truth is that in an area that is primarily section 8 you get those who need it, and those who simply want the hand out so they can do as they please with activities such as parties, stealing, fighting etc. And thus, there is a group of people more apt to ignore the law and do as they please and who do not work for things they want.
            With that said this is her biological family. Let me explain, her mother now works a grand total of two nights a week, is not looking for more, and is collecting welfare benefits for herself and Widget despite M and I supporting Widget. Her mother now has a boyfriend and they often argue to the point that it gets physical. It is not the boyfriend lashing out violently it is the mother. They are primarily residing with Widget’s grandmother who is on section 8, food stamps and disability. She is in her 70s and is unable to work. However, it is apparent that government assistance has been a way of life for this entire family for years. Next is Widget’s 19 year old brother who lives with grandma. He never leaves the house, has not graduated high school and prefers to spend his entire waking moments playing video games, and is working on a pretty good alcohol addiction. If anyone asks the family what he plans to do with his life, they will make excuses.  Then there is a niece living there who does work, but is equally uninspired to do more than work at a minimum wage job. All of these people live in a small three bedroom apartment of which Widget is tossed into the mix since she prefers to be there, where many of the people do not have a bed to sleep in and will flop on the couch of wherever they fall.
            They all stay up all night and sleep all day, on or around the first of the month they load up and go to the casino and will stay sixteen or seventeen hours gambling. None of them have a concept of working for things, and truly believe that they are entitled to be supported by tax payer funded welfare benefits. Initially this all confused me, but then it dawned on me that Widget sees two different worlds. Let me explain.
            M and I both work hard in our perspective jobs, our friends all work and usually in the evening we are tired when we get home, still have to prepare dinner, do required housekeeping etc, and then fall into be just to do it all again the next day. One the weekends we often stay home just to recuperate our energy supplies so we are ready for the upcoming Monday. If we want something extra we work harder, or cut back where we can, save and the buy whatever it may be. We live on a budget, and as such purchase groceries that fit into the budget. (Granted we do eat pretty darn well *laughs*)
            Then we have Widget’s family, who do not work, who gets money from the state or wherever they can, can sleep all day, party all night and have pretty much not self-control because they do not have to. They can go out all night at the casinos, or if you are her brother you can sit home ALL the time, play video games all night and mom and grandma will supply beer and cigarettes.  In other words, they get the fun without the responsibility.
            Now at 17 you are presented with both worlds. And I have to admit at 17 the life with no self-control, no rules and not responsibilities would have looked pretty damned appealing to me as well. So she has the work hard for what you want or party and let the government foot the bill If you were an average teenager what would you pick?
            Oh and in our home we have rules. State law says under 18 has a curfew of 10 p.m. during the week and midnight on Friday and Saturday. Because we believed her to be responsible those are the curfew times we instituted. We did let it slide on special occasions such as prom night, but for the most part those were the limits. We also expected to know where she was going and with who, no parties without adult supervision etc.
            However, with mom it is acceptable to stay out until 5 in the morning because as her family stated “she was with her cousin who would not let anything happen to her” Said cousin is not yet 18 either and just graduated high school this year. Oh and during at least one of these outings they landed at a party with other underage teens with drugs and alcohol. Yet to her family this is acceptable because Widget and the cousin did not drink or use any drugs. I wanted to scream am I the only one to see an issue here.
            Just prior to school being out for the summer, really the only time we heard from Widget was if she wanted a ride somewhere or for us to buy her something. (Hummm no responsibility and still get what she wants purchased for her). Thus, M and I decided to stop being her taxi and stop being her banker to see what happened. Frankly, right around prom I started feeling very used by her and her family. We also took bets on what would happen when school was out for the summer. Seems we were both right, school has been out since a week ago last Thursday and she has not been home. I did hear from her for the first time last night with excuses of why she has not checked in. Sadly, we agreed that if she failed to return home for two weeks we would assume she prefers the other life and wants ours only to pay the bills and as such let her mother know she can just stay with them.
            I rather feel like a failure for trying to help her and offer her something better but her preferring the other. I simply have grown tired of banging my head against a wall. Yet I am saddened. She is a smart, beautiful girl who has so much potential. Her counselor at school even stated she could get her a full ride scholarship because everything she has overcome to succeed. The problem is she hasn’t overcome anything and has been sucked back in. I initially was willing to fight for her, and we tried, but when she herself has chosen the alternative, it is fighting a losing battle.
            Next, Thursday will be two weeks, and M will go and have a discussion with her and her family. I am unsure if I will go along because it does break my heart, and I have a nasty temper which would probably take over and I would explain to the family exactly what their lack of desire to make something of their lives, their willingness to lie and even fracter a law or two to get what they want and their life of no responsibility is exactly how she is going to end up and instead of being a productive member of society she will likely end up a leech on the welfare system not because she needs the help but because she sees no reason to aspire to more. Again there are those who truly need the help of welfare and do aspire to more, but as in a terrible situation of which they need help and there are those who abuse the system to make it harder for those who truly need it. Sadly her family is of the latter group.
            So there is the widget update, I wish it was better news, and I truly hope I am wrong in which path I believe Widget will choose and somehow she will overcome her family ties to make something of her life, but by something she has said recently and her actions, I am not so sure. I wish we could have done more.

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Update and random ramblings

I know I have not been around for the past few months. It is easy to say life has been busy, and that is part of it. The other part is that I rather crawled inside myself and was dealing with some personal stuff I ignored for a very long time. Don’t panic, it has nothing to do with my marriage to M, we are fine. Though I will admit during my checked out period I tend to push everyone away and I am sure I tried to with M as well. However, as always he sees through me, and gives me the space to sort out my demons, but always lets me know the pushing away isn’t working and he is not going anywhere.

 To make a long story short, for most of my life the pushing people away always worked in the past, so I was used to people walking away. M doesn’t give in that easy. I swear that man has so much more patience than I do. With that said I want to apologize to everyone for just kind of disappearing. Despite my work schedule being hectic and life being busy I am going to make a conscience effort to post more often, now that I am coming out of my funk. Only because some people read into things, again I must say that our marriage is fine!

As we have explained in the past, we are polygamists but far from the traditional polygamist family. C and I have little to no interaction and M has two homes, two families etc. I will admit and I know the two homes is a good thing, I am territorial in regard to my home. I believe most women want a home that is their own, to make their own etc.  

M thinks I am insane, but I have considered the possibility of exploring the idea of a third wife. There is no one picked out or considered etc, it is just something I have mulling around in my mind. The truth is I want a relationship with a sister wife, that close family connection. That is not something C wants. In saying that please do not think I am going out to seek a third wife for M. In fact, in our lifestyle I do not think you can “seek” out a wife, it is something that happens, usually when a family is not looking for it.

Not to mention there are other things to consider. All three of us are in agreement that we do not want to have children. Widget it enough (I will have to write a Widget update at a later date). Thus, if another woman were to enter the family, I think it is important to know if she wants children etc. Already having children is one thing, and I believe we would ideally want children to be older. After all M and I are grandparents, somehow starting over is not something we really want to explore. Not to mention due to C being unable to have children, and the fact that she had wanted them, I think it would be cruel to her to have another wife have M’s child, even if unplanned.

Then there is the timing issue. M says repeatedly, two is enough. And to be honest at times I think he does feel pulled in two directions, and seldom actually makes time for just himself. He has two homes, two wives, to sets of bills, etc. Do I really want to impose a third home, a third set of bills, and a third demand on his time. 

I realize it sounds like I am stating all the reasons why it’s a bad idea, but at the same time I see the positive. It is a connection between all members of the family. Another person to share life with, the good the bad and the ugly.

Each polygamist family is unique and has its own dynamics. So even if there are friends who are polygamists, they do not necessarily always understand because it is not a part of their dynamic. Thus, having another person who is family would be great. I assume even non polygamists families each have their own dynamics, and sometimes friends may not really understand something.

Again it is just something that is mulling around in my mind. So please don’t get the idea that one day a blog post will appear announcing a third wife.  It is not something we are actively seeking out. As there are other issues we are handling at the moment. For example, Widget and summer school and the negative pull her biological family is having on her, one of my kitties due to have kittens at any moment. My job has gone from busy to insane with a lot of different changes. I am considering a new car, but not really sold on what kind I want, how much I can afford to spend, etc.

 And C and M’s dog having been diagnosed with cancer and now receiving chemo, and the heartbreak of one of our pets being ill. My heart goes out to C, and I wish I could do more as I do understand that to us our pets are family and we will do whatever is needed to take care of them. As such, M is spending a little extra time with C and with their pet, as they explore every possible treatment.  

So, there is the update on our family, and again I will be make a better effort of keeping in touch better and more often. At least once a week if not more often, and I will kick M in the butt so he makes an appearance as well *laughs*.