First thing this morning I hear Jackson yelling at his brother for shutting the bathroom door. I hear some things I couldn’t decipher but did make out the last two words: butthole asshole. And people say they can’t understand what he’s saying! Dang it! Usually when he cusses only I can understand him. He surprisingly enunciated ‘asshole’. Jackson is my oldest with Goldenhar Syndrome…I won’t go into that right now.
Parent teacher conferences were today. Jake’s teacher suggested I think about having him repeat kindergarten because he’s very far behind and struggling to grasp reading and math. I really wish I hadn’t deleted my old blog because of my old boss so I wouldn’t have to explain all of this again, but I held Jackson back last year. I did so because of his developmental delay, speech impairment, and low IQ. It was suggested by his teacher and other faculty members. Sadly, Jackson and Jake’s short stature was brought up in both conversations with their teacher’s. “They’re so small…” It’s ‘petite’ and cute when it’s a girl. I digress. Maybe it’ll be for the best.
Jake’s teacher said he’s been talking about his dad a lot lately. She also said he’s been comforting another boy in class who’s father is also deceased. That put me at ease in a weird way. I know that he understands that his father is gone, he’s empathetic, and he knows he’s not alone. I’m glad he can finally relate to someone.
Having said that, I enrolled both boys into the Big Brothers Big Sisters program today. I feel the boys need stable male role models in their lives. I was quick to enter into a relationship after their father passed. I felt it was my duty to find a father figure for them as soon as possible so that that man could “raise” the boys with me or grow with each other. I learned not to rely on anyone or expect too much. I did enter into a relationship with a man who loved the boys. Even said that he loved them and told me he wanted to help raise them with me. Which is what I wanted and what every single mother hopes to find. However, after a while, I realized he wasn’t he best influence for the boys and not the best partner for me. So I quit looking for a relationship. But the boys soon wanted the pizza man to come in and play with them. They were asking the guy who cut the grass to stay around after mowing the yard to play with them. It was hard telling the boys these men had their own families to go home to. I’d see their disappointment. It’s heartbreaking to see your kids hurt and not understand that their father didn’t intend on leaving them, that I love them. But I fear it’s not enough. They need someone to take the fish off the hook. Teach them to ride with the training wheels because I don’t want to see them fall. They’re both following me into the women’s bathroom for fuck’s sake.
But two and half years later you learn a lot. You learn not to expect anything from anyone. Which is really sad when you’re supposed to raise children to be caring and helpful to others. I just have to tell them not to expect anything in return, ever. Don’t expect compassion. Don’t expect help. Don’t expect trust. You need to do these things, just don’t expect them.
I’m learning to do things I don’t like to do. Like sit through parent teacher conferences and IEP meetings, crying, not having anyone else to turn to or even blame. I sat in the hallway today and saw the families walking by. The couples walking into classrooms for their conferences with their children’s teachers. I thought about how I bet if they were just told this news they could holds hands, talk it out together, support their child and each other. Even the divorced or separated share responsibility and have double the help and support for their child. I thought about how I was just told I should hold back yet another child. I thought about what this must mean about me as a mother. Bad genes even? I noticed I’m crying at this point. But then do this thing I’m learning to do, tell myself to shut the fuck up. Just get through it. Don’t overthink it, just deal with it. Accept the reality and take it one day at a time. Think about the other single parents doing this and not crying, not feeling sorry for themselves. I think about the children that don’t have parents that want to attend a parent teacher conference. I think about the children who don’t have families. I’ll go home and cry, and did, and feel sorry for myself for a little bit but then get the fuck over it.
The only things I ever want these boys to expect is my love for them unconditionally, expect my support. Expect my help (ok, within reason). Expect me to listen. You can rely on me and depend on me. Just don’t expect the same from anyone else. And if want to be the best person you can be, love unconditionally, support and help others. Listen to people. Be reliable and dependable. Be the exception in the world! People are sometimes deserving of it.