Family photo 2013

Family photo 2013

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Boundaries and What Not

El sexy pelón and I were sitting at a shiny, white, plastic picnic table in the concessions area of Sam's on our weekly date because extravagance, it's our virtue. He was noshing on a crispy chicken sandwich and I a yogurt with blueberries and granola since he stays thin the easy way and I gain a few lbs. each time I inadvertently catch a waft of bacon. We take one of the minions with us every other time to bestow on them the magnanimous fringe benefits of of everything The Good Life has to offer. Being a Deutsch kid, it's really the blessingist.  

Fluorescent lights blared down on us, devout Walton enthusiasts scurried by, shoving their supersized carts out to their compact cars that would escort them to their stucco monstrosity abodes. Oh, I kid. There were plenty of SUVs in the parking lot too. Um, Colorado.  

It's tough to say why, exactly, they were staring at us as they passed by. Maybe it was because we sport a rear wheel drive maxi van and our house is uncharastically outfitted with old fashioned board and batten of a distinctly purplish hue. Who can know? Could it be because baldino and I are both a peculiar shade of age spot dotted peachy while the child sitting with us is a beautiful, deep, golden chocolate color with pristinely rosy cheeks? Maybe so. Either way, Sam's patrons, they're gawkers, that bunch. 

Oh wait, it could have been the fact that the crazy white lady who's *clearly* not sampled the all-the-rage-for-people-her-age botox was, you know, bawling. Like, actual pitter pattering tears plunging onto the gleaming slab where the cheap food lie. 

That's because it was the day she admitted it to me with her actual words. What I had surmised before, but hadn't the courage or gumption to truly believe. The darling. My daughter! She told me the truth. She enjoys seeing me hurt and she spends time thinking of ways to accomplish that very thing. 


Now, now. We could delve into great detail about the ache in her heart that drives this type of Awesome Stellar Life Sabotaging Motivation. But, really. Don't we all know the drill already about kids from hard places and all that jazz? To me, no matter how many adoption books I read, it all boils down to that one simple little phrase I heard many moons ago regarding folks in general: Hurt people hurt people. Period. She is not to blame. That hurt is somthing that happened to her. It's the soothing of that hurt, escorting it from a place of unhealthy to managable that's the tricky portion. That's where I fall short again and again. Assisting that long, precarious process is a job for The Big Girls.

Needless to say, I was crushed. Devastated. Obliterated. Humiliated. Horrified. Shocked. Angry. Hot. Fuming. Pitiful. Sad. So, so, so sad. My tiny self felt utterly betrayed. 

That was the day I realized, Boundaries, Lady! You need to get some! Do they sell them at warehouse stores in jumbo boxes?

A few of you have asked about yesterday's post. How, precisely, am I going about working to establish these boundaries. As in, specifically.

I meant to tell you. I really did. It's just that I'm not so amaze balls and everything at the How To Business. I've never managed to find a step by step guide, solutions manual, though I have scoured the county and each and every single one of my friend's brains to acquire one. (Right, friends? Yea and amen.) Here, on this screen, I just spew out all my personal bizNESS and hope you'll judge me a teeny bit less than harshly. It's my only method. To type as I go. But, I am NOone, no one, no one to tell anyone how to anything. 

All I can say is this: the personal boundaries I am learning to forge are very real, very needed, and very much about my MENTAL and EMOTIONAL well being. They have nothing to do with not spending time together or ignoring each other or being spiteful or rude or anything like that. Boundaries - they can be anything that help facilitate a healthier relationship for all parties. Correct me if I'm wrong, but I doubt there is any right way to boundarize your life. See? I just said boundarize. Pretty sure that's outside the boundaries of proper English. Whateves. I might talk more about mine later, if you want. I need some more practice first.    

It's just that I can not, can not, can not, continue to lay my heart fully on the line in an unsafe place that leaves me vulnerable to perpetual life hijacking wounding. I have to reserve part of it for myself, so I can carry on no matter what. I have to separate myself, mentally and emotionally from actions intended to provoke a rise out of me and break my heart. Because they do. Break my heart. And moving through life with a continually broken heart is wearisome to the soul. 

The funny thing is, I'm sure, without question, my daughter feels the very same way. Cycles, they can be mind shatteringly viscious.      

Thanks so much for reading. My weepy, extra fragile self who is finding ways to carve healthy spaces for herself is so, so grateful for you, dear, kind, wonderful and life breathing, friends. You are precious people. I can't imagine doing life without you. 


Anonymous said...

Me again. From the Midwest. Reading and relating and so sorry that one more mom is dealing with the pain of their child in these very painful ways. It is exhausting. Just thinking about the causes, consequences, collateral damage, the what to do and how to do it, analyzing if it's just us, our own personalities bringing out their worst, feelings of being their only target and no one else seeing how hard it is to be purposely pushed out. Though my daughter is many years older and home seven years, I'm sorry to say, I have no answers, other than taking it all to Jesus. I haven't always done that, but instead reacted from my own place of "wisdom." He probably won't make it all go away or suddenly heal all their pain or ours. But He's the Great Physician and Healer. These issues aren't probably the "touch the hem of His robe" type of stories with sudden, miraculous healing. But daily we can find strength and hope and truth that He is with us always and can turn what the enemy meant for evil to our good. Michael W. Smith's "Sovereign Over Us" speaks powerfully about this.
I do know I haven't always dealt with it correctly. I'm impatient and want respect. Should I have walked away more? Probably. Given more grace? Probably. Tho...I actually think I've served up a ton of it, considering the intensity of her stubborn and rude behavior. Maybe not. There's always room for more grace. Things are MUCH better than they used to be. She is maturing and able to consider more mature concepts as we talk. I plan to sit with her and read some of your recent posts. When the time is right. I know your words have encouraged my hubby to consider what he has mostly not been able to see or accept as her part of the conflict. As painful as I know it is for you, I do thank you for sharing your heart and thoughts concerning your struggle. I pray you can find the boundaries you need and the wisdom to know how to implement them...ways that will keep you strong and present with your healthy kids and husband. Keep believing that God is also teaching them much about compassion, healthy ways to deal with pain and conflict, and more we just can't see from this side. Your beautiful Meadow needs you so much more than she can say. She has a wonderful mom, one fully committed to finishing what God brought her to do. She just needs reminders from the Lord that she herself is able to rise above the pain and carry on. You are being that example to your daughter, as you find those boundaries and show her healthy ways to deal with emotions and with the people we love.

Anonymous said...

Once, after yet another session of my daughter's rudeness and efforts of distancing me, I talked to her about how I was going to stick with her, no matter what. God gave me the thought to play Steve Green's
"Love Will Find a Way". I was doing dishes, she was sitting on the floor in the kitchen where I'd told her to sit and listen to the song. It brought her to quietly falling tears. Especially the line that says "Love will find a way to follow where you run..." It was a God thing, and a moment that spoke truth into her heart through a song.
Nancy in the Midwest

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