Hey Mom, It's me...
I wish I could remember entirely every situation. There were so many. If I'd try and write you a story I'd be lying in someway shape or form. It end up being the mashing together of distant recollections, forming more of a compilation. What I can say with full honesty, is the memory of my feelings during these instances. She grounded me. She was my anchor during the storms. She'd save my ship from wreck.
After my son was removed from my dependence and placed in my mother's care, she had to make many challenging choices. Some made me hate her. Like when it was Peyton's birthday and she was supposed to meet Heather and I in the park. She never showed up. I was crushed. I called. She answered. I was mad. She explained I wasn't doing good and she couldn't let Peyton see me like that. I was crushed, and I knew she was right. Did I hate her or...?
Heather and I hated that we couldn't see Peyton anymore. I mean, how did my mom know whether we were using or clean if she didn't let us come over? I remember yelling at my mom on the phone saying I was going to walk from Lancaster to Buckeye Lake to see him. She said "Okay, I just can't bring him to you." I was furious. This was a large part in our decision to move to Florida. "At least there it wont hurt so bad not being able to see Peyton." We said to each other.
In Florida there were many moments where I called my Mom and had one of those, "You were right. I get it now." conversations. There were days she would let me talk to Peyton. Others, she wouldn't. She always answered the phone. Really, ha, she answered it more then than she does today.
I would call her at all hours of the day. I remember when I felt like the world was against me. The only person I knew would always be for me was, my mom. No matter what. I don't know how she knew. It's like she was always there with me. She would always seem to say the right things. She could calm an anxious heart. When all reality was without reason, her voice would would clear my eye surrounded by suspicion. The connections mothers have for their children, shall forever remain a mystery to men everywhere.
I had a conversation more recently with her about tough love. I always thought it was called tough love because of how hard it was on me. The older I get, the more I see it's a bit different. Really it was my mom who'd again, shed light on a mystery. "It's called tough love because of how hard it is to do. Do you know how hard it is for a mother to walk away from her son? Do you know how hard it was to talk to you some times, never knowing if I'd see you again?" She told me. At one point she tried to explain the feeling like this, "I had to prepare for your death. I knew I couldn't take it all at once. You can't even imagine."
Deep down, we know what we are doing is wrong. That's a reason we feel so helpless. So looking back, even then I couldn't really be mad at Mom. She was acting out of love for me and Peyton. She was always doing the best she knew, to make the best decisions possible in the moment. Now as a parent on this side, I can see that most of us are doing the best we can with what we know. That's the thing, there is so much we don't know. We have to trust our gut on some things I suppose.
Looking from this side I can see how my selfish decisions forced many serious scenarios on others around me. None more than my mom. I don't know how she did it. I don't even know if I could do it if my son lives a life similar to mine.
I guess the lesson learned is this: Even when, in the moment a part of me hated my mom for the decisions she was making against me, all of me loved her. Really, the part that hated her, hated me. I knew she drew the line in the sand.