I'm full of questions. Am I doing the right thing? Am I making the right decisions? Am I losing my mind? But the one that bothers me more than all of those is, 'can I do more for her?' Undoubtedly, as parents, I think we always answer affirmatively believing there is always something else that we can be doing, being, or providing for our children. We want the best for them, for them to be better than we are after all. Going through the changes she and I are currently experiencing, this is a sensitive question for me because I know for sure that I could and should be doing more. My issue is how to go about getting it all done.
Will I have enough strength and determination? Will they understand at work? Will I lose my job? Will my friends think less of me? Will they get tired of hearing my story? These thoughts race through my mind and before I can even ponder an answer for them, I'm bombarded by the task of living. Will she remember all of this? How badly will it all affect her? Will she understand when she's older? Will she blame me? Will she forgive me? Am I being too hard on myself?
That last question comes to me from time to time and I always dismiss it as a cop out, a way for me to deflect responsibility for my role in my current situation. I know that is partially true and that I am being a bit hard on myself too. But I also know that I am the only one that can change our current situation for the better so there is no time to feel sorry for myself or to relax. I must continue to believe in the end result, that I will have all I envision, that I cannot fail.
When will this end? Will I ever be able to relax, to not worry? Will everything be alright? Someone told me recently these are questions the Devil puts in our heads. I don't believe in a "devil" in those terms but do equate this line of questioning with an internal fear that haunts many of us which, if left unchecked, can lead to a person's destruction. I'm aware of this and try to manage it by focusing on what needs to be done and reminding myself of the steps I've taken so far.
How do I manage her emotions? What actions and behavior are her just being a toddler and which ones are her reactions to being affected by the situation? Has she been scarred for life? I know there's no turning back the clock, no do-overs for all the mistakes that have taken place and bad decisions that have been made. Right now I struggle with how to discipline her when there is bad behavior and how to help her deal with the roller coaster of emotions I'm sure she's feeling. She's currently struggling a bit with whining and being clingy and living in between two homes doesn't help the situation. Nor does being thrust into a new environment where up to five different people that she's just getting to know are not only responsible for her but also have a different way of dealing with her and her emotions than I do. I also struggle with helping my family realize that this is not the way she always is and she is doing the best she can in the current situation. I realized today that the way she behaves at home (whichever one she's in at that moment) is similar to the way she behaved when she first started school. She is now comfortable at school, no crying or whining when dropped off, and unsettled at home. She seems to be mirroring my behavior and approach to my work and home life. It leaves me unsettled, extremely saddened and with more questions on how to deal with this, to change it.
How can I get out of this? How long will this take? I believe my perseverance will dictate that. I spoke to a friend today where during our conversation I was reminded of how thankful I was for the emotional support network I have. 'I don't know where or who I'd be without it' is what I said and it's true. That along with the faith in myself and our future will get me through this. That's the only thing that is keeping me going now and the only question that I can answer definitively.
Do I have faith? Do I believe I can do this?? Yes, I do. My struggle is with confirming my approach. I know that I will have to sacrifice to get where I'm going. I also know that my daughter will not and cannot be one of the sacrifices I make; she's already gone through that with me. I need to make some big decisions - some foundation building decisions to borrow a phrase from a wise friend - and I need to make them quickly. Time is of the essence. I know this is my year and we're already 2 1/2 months in. Everyday I must check something off the list and I cannot let fear or all my questions stop me. I, literally, don't have the time or energy for it.
I'll continue to walk this balance beam of a life that I'm living and keep the faith that I've got the skills required to land firmly on my two feet. Questions be damned! I've got lots of living and changing to do!
Do I have faith? Do I believe I can do this?? Yes!! I do!!!
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