During weak moments, I doubt my instincts. Last night I had one such, fleeting moment of doubt. It arrived after reading a note from “Anonymous;” my instincts started to quiver. The comment read,
Hate to break it to you momma, but that is just part of growing up. Seems to me like you have a little bit of that to do. You seem like an emotional mess and you need to learn how to let your son grow on his own.
Ouch. Delete that quickly…
Go into trash and read again.
It still hurts.
Delete again and try to go to bed.
My brain stirred like a big bowl of wimpy mush, then suddenly my husband’s helpful words pulled me out of my thick, lumpy funk. He said, “You’ve known for a while that some doubt the decisions made, so why let it bring you down now?”
Like a flash, my sadness turned to strength. If only I could call my cynic and explain that I do feel like an “emotional mess” at times. I’m a mess when my brain flashes the upsetting images I found on his phone. Or if, out of nowhere, I get a whiff of the way he smelled after sneaking out of the house and getting sick all over the bathroom. Another thing that makes me sad is when I remember the way he glared at me and sputtered, “You are such a wuss,” right after I insisted that smoking pot was dangerous. Visualizing the drugs he’s tried, or will try, when he’s among his “friends” makes me scared too. So, yes, I suppose you could call me a mess at times.
Raising M to adulthood has been difficult. And according to recent wisdom spoken into my eager ear, it seems that he does not fit the mold of a typical teen who experiments with alcohol and drugs while maintaining a relatively normal school and social life. I realize this is difficult for some to understand, and some may consider the steps we have taken as drastic, but when you fear your child’s life is spiraling down a treacherous path, your choices are limited.
To my Anonymous reader, thank you for challenging me. Reflecting on the responsibilities I have to gently, but sometimes firmly, guide M to adulthood is helpful. I just wish you could walk in my shoes for a bit. I am curious to see if you would still feel the same way.