When Salinda texted yesterday asking me if I could come pick her up sometime in the next couple days, I had really good intentions. I wanted to find time in my schedule when I could do that, organize my thoughts, and have a long conversation with her in person. But she had other plans.
Plans that included calling me when I didn't have time to think straight and thus I said too much too fast and in the wrong order. To her credit she didn't hang up on me or leave the conversation. She let me vent and then a couple texts back and forth and a facebook message have brought us to a resolution.
In retrospect I should have been more controlling of her life, but she always pushed things so far down the line to get her way that the price was too great. And so now she is living with the consequences of her own choices, but it all still comes back to my responsibility for making them.
HEY! That's it! That's why parenting sucks! It's because if you make a choice for your child then it's your fault when it goes wrong. But if you stand back and let your kids make the choices themselves, then when it goes wrong it's your fault for letting them make the choice! So no matter what, it's my fault.
Everything, therefore, is my fault. Everything negative in the universe, past and present, that has to do with my children is indirectly my fault in some way. This is a revelation to me! All along I was living in denial.
Can you tell I'm letting this sink in as i type to you? I am at fault for everything bad that has or will ever happen to twelve individuals in this world. Some of them will remind me of it every day while others will just let it brood in them and not mention a word while it slowly sinks in over the years just how much their mother has screwed up their lives.
Maybe the reason that it has taken me so long to figure this out is that I never really blamed my parents for the things that happened to me. But I was one of those very odd kids that only comes along once and a while who actually loved pleasing my parents and while I did argue, tried to make them happy. I was an overachiever and very motivated to build a life for myself. So blaming them never crossed my mind. They were my choices.
With this realization comes some relief though. Because now that I know that no matter what, it's my fault, I can be freed to not get so wrapped up in all of it. I'm going to get blamed anyway. I need to get used to it.
WHile obviously some of this was written "tongue in cheek" today really is the first time I put all that together. As parents, we are going to be the ones to blame forever, no matter what we do.
You'd think that fact would help me to shake it off a bit more... Who knows. Maybe it will.