Monday, November 17, 2008

Life on life's Terms

It has been almost four years since I last used drugs. I am very proud of the recovery and progress I have made in my life. And yet it is still so hard to be powerless. It is still so hard to accept the past when it is staring you square in the face. So how do you get past the past when it takes the form of your fifteen year old daughter? How do you learn to not follow in your parents footsteps. I am not saying my parents were bad parents, I am not angry with them anymore. However, I know now through working the steps that I have worked that they were not always right in the decisions that they made. Nobody is perfect, we all have flaws, however some mistakes make wounds that are harder to heal then others. Some mistakes are recurring mistakes past on from generation to generation. How do you change the direction of the future if you are powerless. What I mean is my daughter is very, very emotional right now. She is full of pent up rage, sadness,abandonment and is lashing out these days in ways I had done when I was her age. My fear is that she is going to choose the same path in life as I did and I am powerless to stop that. When my mother died she lost her safety net, she has not dealt with that yet. I have been working hard on my recovery to show her I am not running again and I do have empathy with her feelings of anger at me. This weekend we had a confrontation with her that ended in her slapping her stepfather in the face knocking his glasses off and breaking them. If that wasn't the biggest shocker his response to her after sending her to her room was to go in there and hug her and tell her that we love her. He kept asking her why was she doing this, and didn't she know we are not her enemy? They both sat there and cried. Then she came out to me to apologize and cry. It is like she has not allowed herself time to grieve my mother and she is letting it all come out sideways. The problem is that I was so angry with her that I wanted to kick her spoiled little butt. My mother and older sister were like this and one ugly night they ended up on the floor of the dining room beating each other up. My sister got the worst of it but I felt my moms anger that night and I still feel it now. So how do I not do what my mother did and kick her out, how do I not be angry with her. I am tired of trying with her. Nothing I do will change the past or her mind and in the meantime I have two little girls who need me now too and what's more is they want me. I'm struggling with this because I love my baby very very much and I feel like these lies and this stand off is her way of pushing me so far away because she hates me. If I follow my mothers footsteps I will kick her out of the house, if I follow my fathers I will co-sign her bad behavior and pretend it didn't happen and give her back her freedoms. Where is my middle ground. How do I look my daughter in the face and not be angry with her. I will pray for my higher power to save me from my anger for now. I have feelings today, some good and some not so good but they are all feelings today. I will not run from my feelings today I will work them out. This is my life on life's terms and I have faith that it will be OK. That will leave me with today's thought "Caring about others, running the risk of feeling, and leaving an impact on people brings happiness."--Rabbi Harold Kushner


Ann said...

Loving and caring for angry kids is beyond difficult but you have to rise above your own anger here. Don't kick her out but let her know there are consequences for violent behaviour. Kids need boundries even though they will test those boundries. Perhaps a counselor would be of help to her - a neutral party that she can vent to. She needs to know that you love her and want to help her but that it's important to talk about her feelings rather than letting them take over. It's not easy and it won't happen overnight but it can be done. Been there, done that and have the battle scars to prove it :) You are stronger than you know and you will get through this but it won't be easy.

Fireman John said...

very powerful, touching post;
continue to follow your own path.
check out stanton peele's books.
he has some amazing works, including
"the truth about addiction & recovery" and "how to addiction-proof
your child".
stay strong,