Have you ever been so frustrated and beaten down by parenting that there were days that you regretted the decision to have children?
How about this one? You wish they would run away and not come back; or the low of all lows- wondering if it was possible to get into a minor car wreck without major injuries, but it would keep you in the hospital a few weeks so you could have some peace- however you quickly rule this one out because your self-preservation tactic is too great, and you can only imagine what state the house would be in when you get out.
Laugh as you may, ALL of these thoughts crossed my mind when our family was in the height of crisis with our teenager. You know you are in parenting hell when you think a few weeks in the hospital might be better than dealing with your child.
Almost two years have passed since that unstable time and I have to say, while I can clearly recall when and where I had those thoughts, I can’t summon up the feelings of despondency I felt at that time that would make me think that way. I have come a long way, done a lot of hard work and now feel like my children are getting a much better version of me.
I recently shared with someone the moment that I realized why so much has gone wrong in our relationship of mother and child. One night, during his stay in wilderness I couldn’t get him out of my mind and sleep eluded me. I though writing a letter to him might help me. I sat down to write around 4:30 am, needless to say five hours later I got out of my seat and was holding an 11 page single spaced document, which I named the Mom Manifesto, as to call anything eleven pages long as a letter seemed ridiculous. It was in this stream of conscious writing to my son that I came to find my truth.
That letter was the true catalyst of the massive shift that was about to occur in our relationship. It was the start of our healing, and I am pretty damn proud of myself for having the courage to actually send it to him; I am even more proud that my son read it, accepted it, appreciated it and was willing to restart the rebuilding of our relationship. I now like the mother that I have become, and I am well aware that the work must continue every day.