“Anger is an acid that can do more harm to the vessel in which it is stored than to anything on which it is poured.” Mark Twain
Before we get to far in today, I must tell you that I literally have lost sleep about writing this blog post because it brings with it the most shame and the most sadness that we still very much deal with to this day. I have been able to slow down much of the events on replay up to this point in the story and I believe to is because as I was self destructing, I was destroying my precious girls through the process. As a mom, you can understand why that is so hard for me to stomach, face and then admit. Not to mention this is the part of my testimony I usually skim over so very few people know what I am about to tell you.
(DEEP BREATH: Count to 10! HAHA)
As excited I was that we were free, the anger that I had built up over my lifetime was about to get the best of me. I was battling restraining orders against Vincent after he sent over 400 text messages in less Than 48 hours and was refusing to give up the control he had worked for possessed for so long. He required DNA tests on both kids before he would sign papers and was dragging out the process over several months.
When I left Vincent, there was woman who had really become a mentor and a friend to me and the kids. She was always so helpful and encouraging and willing to help with anything I needed. Up to this point in my life, interaction with men and love was devastating. It wasn’t a positive feeling and to be honest, I had come to a point that if this was love, then I didn’t want to be loved. She was so conveniently placed in my life for a time like this. We did everything together, she was never mean, never tried to hurt me and was willing to help with my kids and a bit financially. For the first time in 7 years, I wasn’t threatened. I needed help more than ever before. She and another girl came and helped with night feedings and morning duties. Several months had gone by and our relationship had become more than I had intended because as much as I hated men, I knew that I very much was not gay and that although I adored her for what she had done for us and it felt safer than anything I had experienced before, that I couldn’t live in that lifestyle either. Our friendship ended so badly and with many hurt feelings, but I was at a place that I didn’t care who or what I hurt, I was free to be me.
I began working at a dentist office and losing weight. My heaviest during my past marriage was 265 and a size 22. When I tell you that I hated myself, I am not being a bit sarcastic about the feeling. I started making friends and men were noticing me. I was so shocked yet flattered that I was attractive. I had been told no one would ever want anything to do with me and my kids ever again. From the moment the first man hit on me, it was like a tiny snowball rolled off the top of mount Everest and avalanched all the way down taking out everything in its path. I had no direction, but the goal was to prove to myself that I was desirable, worthy and that was I needed. I didn’t care that the main reason I was desirable was for sex. After all, some things never change. I began dating and sleeping with anyone who was interested. My apartment was a revolving door of men and friends bringing alcohol. I had discovered that alcohol numbed pain and I immediately became addicted.
For 3 years, my kids were the first ones at school, the last ones to get picked up and then the hour or two we had to spend together each night was always interrupted by either a man or group of people getting drunk at our apartment. I always was able to get them in bed and tell them goodnight, but I didn’t always remember it the next morning. I was having the time of my life and parenting, although I did it, was not my number one priority. I always justified that I was home with them and not out on the town so that made me a good mom. My sweet girls have seen their momma puking and passed out drunk so many times I can’t even count. There have even been times, my sweet girls had to help me get to the bathroom or back to my bed because the alcohol had gone much to far. I would be lying to you if I said I hadn’t laid on my floor several times during that 3 years and hoped God would take me so that my babies could have a different momma. Anyone could’ve done a better job raising them than I was doing at that point. We had no money, no future so for the time being, if the shame and anger were high, the alcohol had to remain higher. I was chasing an empty goal and One that had no ending. How many men or empty bottles equaled worth or importance? When would I know I was good enough?
As I am typing, the tears well up in my eyes.
Still to this very day, out of the blue, one of my girls will remember something during that time that happened and ask about it. I then must explain that I was not a good mom and how sorry I am that I ever put them in the situation I did. That I am so sorry I didn’t fight for a better start to their lives than I had and that I am sorry that when I was having sex irresponsibly that it never crossed my mind that I was choosing their dads. How could I have had it so rough in my mom’s house as a child and yet still be so damn selfish when I had the chance to do better? I am absolutely HORRIFIED when I think of the things they have seen me doing and the amount of men they saw coming in and out of our house. Kids aren’t stupid they know what is going on. The person I was then, I would advocate to have their kids taken away now. I was THAT mom. I had one job! I was a mom and I failed miserably at it for years.
If you have babies (0-18), you hug them and tell them you love them. I know your sanity matters so go have lunch with a friend or dinner with some couples but do yourself a favor. Make them your number one priority behind your spouse and if you don’t have spouse then they are your number one. You will have the rest of your life to party it up with your girlfriends or your buddies. I am not suggesting you NEVER have a good time without your kids, but I promise you that if you selfishly make yourself your number one priority and figure you’re a good enough parent because your home mon-thur, you are fooling yourself, but you are NOT fooling your child. They deserve the best of what we have for 18 years and then we can have all the “me” time we want. I get so much crap about how much time I spend at home with my kids. I rarely join in on fun without my kids unapologetically in tow. It is because I was a REALLY shitty mom for far too long and will spend the next 14 years that I have kids in my house giving them the very best of what I’ve got. I am not the only one who has been to hell and back! I have drug my girls right alongside.
Forgiveness is the greatest and final form of love and I guess you could say that I am still learning to love myself and all that that embodies. They say time heals everything but I’m not sure that while I live in this body, I will ever be able to fully forgive myself for the sin I have committed against the body I have been given and the eyes of my children. Somedays I wonder why God called me to share my testimony. It takes so much courage that I simply do not embody without him, but I am sure thankful that after ALL the sin I have committed against him, that he is still ALL for me! Where would my kids and I be without Gods Amazing Grace! PTL!!
The light is upon us!
Forgiven and restored,