If you're a dreamer, a wisher, a liar
A hoper, a prayer, a magic-bean buyer
If you're a pretender come sit by my fire
For we have some flax-golden tales to spin
Come in...come in...
~Shel Silverstein

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

New Beginnings Blogfest--sorry I'm Late!!

Oops. Dammit. I can't believe I forgot to put this up earlier. My excuse is that I was working on my 35 word Pitch for Pitch Wars last night and that got me so thoroughly aggravated I shut down my computer and went to bed. haha...(But, I did manage to write a pitch my mentor likes, so YAY)

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.

And then she had Jace. My little grandson. And everything that I thought was true changed in one perfect shining moment of holding that baby in my arms. Cait straightened out. Got a good job. Got an apartment. Went back to school. And, while my worries over the drinking/partying aren't completely erased, they've eased considerably. Cait has eased considerably. Jace has grown her up. I think he is her second chance. I think, without him, whatever life-changing mistake she made could've been something really bad--something she'd have never come back from.

And that is my story. Much too long, I know. Sorry. But it's not the first time that something in my life that seemed horrible, that seemed like a huge ENDING, turned out to be a new and beautiful beginning. And I want everyone out there going through something tough to remember that. Life spins on a dime--and, even when the changes seem bad, you never know if the groundwork is being laid for something amazing...

32 comments:

  1. Jace woke her up and gave her life a purpose. What a blessing for all of you!

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  2. I'm so glad your story has a happy ending. A lovely new beginning.

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    1. Thank you!! Jace was the best happy ending ever!!

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  3. Not to worry. I wasn't aware of this blogfest at all, so you're more with it than I am. WHat a story! I'm a little choked up here, to be honest. :)

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    1. aaawww...that's really sweet. Glad I choked you up and thanks for stopping by!

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  4. A blessing in disguise. I'm glad for you all. My best!

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    1. Thanks, Al! Loved your dragon-show today!!

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  5. Life works out in ways you least expect sometimes. I'm glad that things are working out for her and your wonderful grandson.

    Thanks for participating in my blogfest!

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    1. Your very welcome. Awesome idea for a blogfest!!

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  6. It may have been long (not really!) but it was beautiful. What a blessing to be able to see how what you thought was the end really was the beginning. Thanks for sharing.

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    1. Thanks Charity!! And yes, Jace has definitely been a blessing. :)

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  7. hey, i like dimes, even dollar coins...so spin away. i'm all game.
    this is such a good story of yourself, thanks for sharing, especially the cute photos!!

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    1. Love those photos!! My two babies...

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  8. How precious! Her life totally changed. One of our foster daughters had the same thing happen. Becoming a mother changed everything for Ashley.

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    1. It's amazing how that happens, isn't it? I've often thought about being a foster parent. Seems like it would be very rewarding.

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  9. Ugh, you made me cry. Thanks for sharing this. :)

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  10. Aw, this was beautiful. So touching. And unexpected - I didn't know where this story would go at each turn. Nicely done!

    Visiting from L.G.'s blogfest.

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    1. Thank you. I was totally blown away by your post. I read the friendship one and, even with the addendum, I couldn't tell if it was meant for the blogpost or not, but it's four in the morning, so no time to look around your site to find out. haha. thanks for stopping by!!

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  11. I absolutely love this beginning, it's beautiful, I'm actually trying not to get too emotional here! Thanks for sharing, a great story with an even greater message.

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    1. I loved your post as well. You are the same age as my daughter Cait. She's in school but, so far, she hasn't found anything she really loves. I think that's because she's supposed to be pursuing music. That's her passion, I can tell whenever I watch her play. It's part of the reason I was so upset when she got pregnant--cause it's a hard enough career choice without adding a baby into the mix. BUT--clearly it all worked out and I hope someday she can still follow her dreams with that. :)

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  12. I'm so glad this had a happy ending! Could have been a lot sadder. And he's a gorgeous little boy :)

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    1. I am not even going to pretend false modesty here--he IS gorgeous, isn't he? Everytime I look at his little face I wonder how anyone could be so damn cute. At least until he opens his mouth. hehe. The boy is hell on wheels--the most ornery, articulate, argumentative two and a half year old I have ever seen. He actually explained to me once (with utter sincerity) that he was in my bedroom with his candy cane because he "couldn't eat his candy in the living room cause mommy was out there and she said he couldn't have it."

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  13. Awww...that's so beautiful, Tamara! What a wonderful story...wonderful life.

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    1. Thanks Sus! Life can be tough but, whenever I hold Jace--aka BooBoo Bear, I can't imagine anything MORE wonderful.

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  14. Dude, reading this I got tears in my eyes. From a mother's point of view, I'm snivelly 'cause I totally worry about my kid screwing himself over someday (and not because there are signs of trouble but because I wonder how seriously he takes his own life, sometimes). From the single-mom's point of view, I absolutely know what it is to shelve yourself and your dreams for YEARS and how God-awfully that wounds you. But the tears came when I saw that your daughter's turning around and then seeing your GORGEOUS grandson! Sheesh, I didn't know I'd need a box of tissues for this blogfest!!! ;-)

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    1. haha...You are not the only person who said they choked up on this so don't feel too bad. ;) From what I've heard of your son, he sounds pretty perfect. But yeah, sixteen/seventeen year old boys think they're pretty invincible, which sometimes arises in a seeming-disregard for themselves. BUT...to be so young and invincible again, right?

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  15. What a wonderful story!

    I agree. Motherhood will grow you up. :)

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  16. Amazing story!!! I so glad that your daughter grew up and discovered how happy she would be through her child and that you were giving a lovely grandson to spoil!! Great post :D *Cute family*

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  17. First time I've cried from reading a blog! I, too, got pregnant very young (17), but with the love of my life. Five years later we're married with two beautiful little kids, and I didn't wind up wasting years and money at a university completely focused on football, only to go into a job I would have ended up hating. I traveled the US with my husband in the military, and have been able to devote so much of my time toward writing. Sometimes teenage pregnancy can be such a blessing.

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I love to hear from everyone! Thanks for the comment. :)