Okay...beginnings. Fair warning that this is long, but--if you can read it--I promise its a good story. :) I thought I'd write about one of my favorite beginnings--the beginning of my life with Jace, my grandson. My daughter Cait was a horrible teenager. I mean, really awful. And yes--she could've been worse. No hard drugs--thank God. BUT--that doesn't seem like a huge blessing when your seventeen year old is staggering home at three in the morning, so drunk that you have to call the friggin paramedics because your afraid she's given herself alcohol poisoning this time.
And yes---there are people who are going to read that and think I'm crazy for putting it on a blog or think it must've been something my hubs and I did. And who knows? Maybe it was. But I tried. I mean, bending-over-backwards, reading parenting books out the wazoo, talking to people, counseling...everything.
I tried my best to be a good mom. Growing up, my kids had one--thousand percent of my time/attention. There was never an opportunity they needed to turn down. People thought I was like...supermom. And yet...my older two hit those teen year, got in with the wrong crowd, and years of family fun nights, camping vacations, trips to Disney....all down the drain for my oldest. Suddenly she wanted nothing to do with anything that didn't come in a bottle.
And that's how it continued for a long time. Tumultuous is not the word. And, everytime she seemed to be getting better, she'd backslide. And my husband and I just kept waiting, cause you can't live a life full of huge mistakes and not eventually make one that you can't bounce back from. And when she came home pregnant at nineteen, it FELT like she'd finally hit the motherload.
As far as I was concerned, there went her life. Down the drain. My daughter is a beautiful girl--seriously, it's not just because she's mine. She could be a model, no problem. I mention this because, in our society, looks matter. Sad, but true. And looks like hers open doors. People respond to her stupidly. Honest to God, when I was trying to get her HELP, none of the counselors really believed she had a problem. (She did) She'd smile sweetly at them, talk a little (she's also very articulate and smart) and they would tell me not to worry, that she'd be fine. I'm not going to say how many times this happened. It was ridiculous. I had more than one counselor point out, "She's so pretty." Like THAT mattered. At any rate, fair or unfair, the bottom line is that people naturally want to help girls who look like Cait. And that's a gift--a cosmic, not-earned gift that could really help her in life.
And, get the alcohol out of the equation and she's really sweet. Smart. Driven. Talented (she plays guitar and sings) And all those dreams I had for her...traveling, having an exciting life, trying to pursue some kind of career with music, all those dreams I nursed and sheltered and fertilized for nineteen years felt like they ended in one shrieking, crashing explosion. Suddenly her life was going to be that of a single mom, struggling to get by, having to put her own dreams on hold because, when you have kids--that's what you do. THEY come first. And I didn't want that for her.