Today, as everyday, my daughters and I wake up and get ready to go downstairs for breakfast. Also, as almost everyday, my son is coming upstairs to go to bed. He spends his time asleep during the day and up during the night. This has been a slow process which started as simply not being able to sleep, going to bed later and later, then of course drugs influenced his sleeping patterns as did the school exclusion which lead to no more structure and no more need to be awake during the day. Now it has become his norm. We seem to lead separate lives.
I set the breakfast table for 3. I lay out the plates, get the coffee and cocoa ready. I look in the cupboards and fridge and see what I have to offer today. OK. I warm up the pastries in the oven to revive them and make them fresh again. Some yoghurt and blueberries we bought together yesterday would be nice as well. The girls come in to breakfast. They are happy and eat with smiles and giggles. I feel sad. I try for them, yet for me there is something wrong, something missing.
I sit, sipping my coffee, thinking I have failed. Everything that I have wanted and tried to achieve success with in my life has failed. I went to uni, got the degree and then did nothing with it....FAIL... I left America to travel and find the place I felt a sense of belonging...FAIL... I wanted to find love and be a good wife to a good husband...FAIL...Most importantly, the desire that has been within me since a child, I wanted to be a great mom and have a thriving family with happy and successful children...FAIL!
I try not to dwell on it. I try to keep on trying. I know I have two other children who can succeed without falling into the bottomless pit my son has. More importantly, deep down I know that my son really isn't in a bottomless pit and there is still great hope for him. I do not have wealth to bestow on them, I have nothing of value to leave my children when I die. We do not spend our days doing exciting things and going to fun places and eating out at restaurants or entertaining friends. We do not live in our dream house in a nice area and probably never will. We rarely have holidays and when we do they are often laden with problems. We do not have the dog, cat or ferret that they always wanted and I always promised them, "One day...." I struggle with money, with providing for them, and finding a way to secure a future for all of us. I can not fix all their problems and my answer to their questions is often "I don't know". There is something though that I do have. I have love. I love them so very much. I love all three of them. I love them with all of my heart and soul. I want all three of them to be happy. At the moment though I often feel that I only have two children that I am giving my love to.
I might sound now, after 5 years of various scales of drug issues and problems in my son's life, that I have just accepted our fate and I sit idly "letting" him carry on as he wants. This could not be further from the truth; however, with time you do become tired and drained and the reality sets in that you can not carry on the way you did before because then you will not be able to carry on for your other children. How many times have I tried to sit down and talk about things with my son? How may arguments have there been? How many times have I searched his room and disposed of substances, confiscated the post and put items straight in the bin? Cancelled my bank cards? Hid my purse? Emailed his internet suppliers and told them not to sell to my under age son? Refused my son's demands? Made appointments, phone calls, took him to appointments, sat with him supportively? How many tears have been shed???? I CAN NOT DO IT ALONE.
I want all my dreams that I had when I was young to have become reality. I want to be the smart, successful woman with a loving husband and caring father to our beautiful children. I want the lovely home in a place I feel at home. I want financial security. I want to watch my children grow into happy, successful adults with purpose and meaning in their lives. It is too late for me, but not too late for them. All of what I wanted and failed at achieving will no longer matter if my children achieve success in building the lives that they want and that make them happy and whole.