Guess Who Came to Dinner....

Discussion in 'Parent Emeritus' started by New Leaf, Mar 13, 2016.

  1. New Leaf

    New Leaf Well-Known Member

    Hoku has been seeing her sister Tornado for a month or so, going to visit her nephews and niece. I think she has designated herself as the peace maker. She has hopes for us all to be a happy family together.
    So she called me up, "Mom, I just wanted to let you know I have the boys with me and we are coming over.....Mom, Tornado and Volcano will be coming too and bringing dinner....." I caught my breath and held it as the memory of their crazy exodus reeled through my head. I haven't seen or spoken to them since. Six months of their imposed no contact. I confess, I did not go out of my way to breach it, the morning they left here was full of their drama and turmoil, culminating in my calling police who took their merry time to come. Tornado had violated her TRO (unbeknownst to me) and was sneaking Volcano over, they had been arguing in the wee hours of the morning and I awoke to the frenzy. They sped off down the road and I gathered up the grands and calmed them, readied myself for work, the grands, school. It was a horrifying morning. The phone rang, the two intending to come pick up the grands. I calmly told them to please allow me to drop them off, I had just got them settled. Tornado was yelling about how they were her kids.....they were coming to get them. I hung up and dialed 911. I locked the security screens. Their car roared up the driveway. Volcano came up the porch step with the boys shoes, I told him I called the police and he left with the car. Tornado proceeded to scream and yell, was extremely verbally abusive and ranting, encircling the house yelling at the top of her lungs........"You are just a F- ing haole b!+€#......." It did not echo in my head, she repeated it at maximum decibels over and over and over, running from the front door to the back, as my grands huddled together in shock. I prayed for the police to hurry up. Then she began calling the children to open the door, that I had no right to keep them there. She started with the youngest boy, he looked at me with his big brown eyes then went out, soon followed my granddaughter, then the eldest boy, who had stayed with us for a year and a half to attend a nearby charter school. He came to me with tear filled eyes, hugged me and whispered in my ear "Tutu, I don't want to go, but I have to watch my brother and sister." He kissed and hugged me tightly, then slipped out the door.
    His mother paraded them down the driveway, screaming "These are MY kids, you have no right......."
    I broke down and cried, sobbing and shaking. Called work that I would be late. The policeman finally came and was empathetic, but there was nothing he could do. She is their mother.........

    Six months pass, and now they will step foot in my home again. My mind is racing. I want to see my grands, not their parents.
    Hoku comes into the room I am painting and says "Mom, I hope you are not upset with me that they are coming." I tell her no, but she needs to understand that it has been six long months of intense work processing all of this, that I am only human, and this unplanned visit is very overwhelming for me. She hugs me and says the boys are outside.
    I go out to greet them, but my heart is aching as I think of what they last endured here. What do my grands think of all of this, how their Tutu is so disrespected by their mother? What do my grandkids think of me?

    I see them and my heart melts as we hug, I burst into tears and hold them tightly, they have grown so much in six months. The oldest and I hug each other for a long time, squeezing ever tighter. I cannot stop my tears from flowing.
    They talk with me about school and football. I ask them if they have been okay and they nod yes.
    I collect myself and go back to my work. I am so full of mixed emotions, and am surprised at one of them. I feel shame. Ashamed and saddened at all of this mess. I told Hoku that I would not have dinner, it was too much for me. There has been no communication, no apology, no reaching out.
    I am a stubborn woman. I feel that it is up to my daughter to make amends.

    It has been many years of turmoil and drama, comings and goings, desperately trying to help our daughter, then focusing on the babies. CPS got involved early on when a report was made that my daughter was smoking pot and breastfeeding her second child. I was shocked at the call, she had delivered naturally to avoid exposing the baby to drugs, how could this be? She tested positive. The social worker arranged with us to take care of our grands as rehab was enforced, reunification was CPS goal (as is usually the case). We received no help from the agency, some "clause" the social worker quoted. We are not well off and spent most of our savings.

    There are many more stories of drama and struggle, heartache, grands being dangled in front of us like the carrot before the horse, living with us, withheld from us.

    A hell ride for all.

    ............And here after six months of shunning, Tornado arrives, with Volcano.

    I am painting the back room. I swallow the lump in my throat, hearing her voice. I stubbornly stay at my work.
    I feel sad, angry.
    I did not raise my children to be cruel and obnoxious.
    I hear footsteps.
    In walks Tornado, "Hi Mom" she says, and hugs me. I hug her back and she walks out.

    This morning, as I sit here writing this, I am perplexed. Who does that? Who rips out their mothers heart, stomps on it, has no contact, then waltzes in, as if nothing happened? No apology, no tears.
    Who does that?
    My daughter does.
    At this moment, I do not understand the lack of remorse.
    I don't think I will ever understand it.

    Drugs, do drugs take away conscience?
    I think so.

    It is another chapter in this endless saga.
    I will pray for peace of heart and mind.
    I do not feel angry, more.....bewildered.
    In shock....

    One saving grace.......

    I am very glad to have been able to hold my grands ever so tight and talk with them.

    I have missed them very, very much.


    Ps. To top it all off, Hoku informed me that Tornado and Volcano went to find Rain, took dinner to her. Volcano and this guy almost got into a fight. Tornado wanted Rain to go with them, to get off of the streets. She refused, because "She loves him."......Sigh.

    Lord, give me the strength, and please, please help Rain, Tornado and my grands.
    Last edited: Mar 13, 2016
  2. TheWalrus

    TheWalrus I Am The Walrus

    My daughter does that too. Many times she has done that. I, too, am a stubborn woman. I let her do it to me many times and I feel that in doing so, in her mind at least, that made it acceptable to treat me that way because I didn't call her on it. I still don't bc it would only lead to an apology grudgingly given and not meant, or it would become a flurry of accusations and a tirade. But she went too far and now I am done. Instead, I keep my distance. I don't let her get too close so that it won't hurt so much when she pushes me away. I put up a wall to keep my heart safe, my sanity intact, my dignity undamaged. She can see me over the wall, but she cannot cross it. Because I, too, am a stubborn woman. I didn't raise my daughter to be this way, either.
  3. New Leaf

    New Leaf Well-Known Member

    Walrus, I feel the same, the wall.
    I am not sure about "letting" her do it. I refuse to get dragged into a shouting match.
    Ok wait, I am rethinking that, yes when she came back in the past, she was upset and angry. She blamed her moodiness on her "stress" leaving Volcano, the kids, etc. So yes, I walked around on eggshells, trying to "help" her, thinking that she was abused and out of sorts. I gave her "space". It was a combo, really. Withdrawing. She was snappish and impatient with me and the kids, but boy when her phone rang she would be outside in a jiffy, chatting and laughing. Jekyll and Hyde.
    So, yes, it is a choice made to mistreat me this way. I feel the same Walrus, I do not want to let my guard down and have my heart broken again. Hoku wants us all to go to family counseling, I am resistant. I told her gently that I have done so much to try to help these two, with no appreciation from them. My focus is on my 14 year old son. If they have "issues" with me, they can work it out in their own sessions. I am tired of their blame seeking and being the primary target. I have apologized for parenting mistakes over and again. The choices they make are their own, and I am not going to listen to their excuses.
    I am tired of being raked through the coals, with no remorse from them.
    I understand your not calling her on it, Walrus. It is the same for me and my two. There is no win, no calm discussion or conversation between two adults. They are stuck at 13. My comments lead to circle talking from them, they become enraged no matter what I say, or how diplomatically I try to approach anything. It is gas lighting at its finest, my fault, my fault.
    My "calling" them on it, is disengaging. No use petting an ornery cat.
    If that makes me hard hearted, so be it. If they cannot be decent and respectful, then they need a time out to rethink things.
    I will be cordial and remain a shadow mother, praying for my shadow daughters to find their light.

    I miss them, the old them I used to know.

    Thank you Walrus. I am sorry for the heartache of it. Truly sorry.
    We are not alone.
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  4. Albatross

    Albatross Well-Known Member

    I am sorry, Leafy. Ugh. It makes me feel gaslighted, or crazy, when I have been through an emotional hell and d.c. acts as if nothing happened. It is one thing to be taken for granted, we expect that to a certain extent just by virtue of being parents. But this takes it to a whole new level.

    Totally understand not jumping right into family counseling. It sounds like some amends might be made (or at least addressed) after the last flare before you are asked to jump through another hoop. That is just my *very* humble opinion.

    Until then, I agree, cordial is generally the right approach. I am so happy you got to hug and hold those beautiful grandbabies!
  5. New Leaf

    New Leaf Well-Known Member

    Thank you Albie, I am focusing on those hugs from my grands, and praying for my girls to come to the light.
    In the meantime, one day at a time.
    OOOPS...Time to go to work. Have a wonderful Monday, it is almost Spring Break for us, so I will get to really clean out my house, literally and figuratively!
  6. RN0441

    RN0441 100% better than I was but not at 100% yet

    Leafy wow that sounds awful.

    I think you are smart not to let yourself be drug into this and hurt again.

    A wall of sorts is good. Self preservation. I feel I am learning that too. It's a hard lesson to learn but it does help.

    You have paid your dues and you deserve peace. We all do.
  7. Roxona

    Roxona Active Member

    What a heartbreaking story! Leafy, I am so sorry for your pain, and for everyone else's because good grief we're all going through it ad nauseum. I'm glad you got to reconnect with your grandbabies though. Their hugs must have felt so extra special. I hope you have a better day today.
  8. Kalahou

    Kalahou Active Member

    Aloha Leaf,
    I have been thinking about this episode. I know it was hard and some of it was too much for you. I have felt like this also in some situations. But I think what happened was something good also. You saw your mo`opuna, hugged them, they talked, you cried. They saw your tears and hugged you long. They know you care for and miss them, as they do also care and miss you. This is a memory for them. They know you are there for them, and always will be.
    It’s not uncommon to have a peacemaker within the family to want to ponopono the family members and "make right" the broken family relations. Your little Hoku star looks to be trying to relate to her sisters by being an example of forgiving, and gratitude and love, making an impact, even if in little steps.
    I might be missing something, Leafy. But I see that Tornado made a first small move to reach out. She initiated seeking you out in the back room, greeted you by name and gave a hug. That’s a small step, but I see it as respect. Perhaps it’s hard for her also. I’m sure she was also uncomfortable, feeling her way, and perhaps that’s all she could handle for right now, working through some of her own guilt and shame.
    This is good, Leafy. This is another step, even if small and temporary… a caring sister attempts a connection to plant a seed to show a better way. A seed if nurtured brings forth it’s kind, in its own time. I'm hopeful her sister's gesture meant something good to Rain. A small step.
    Yes, it is another chapter. And the journey continues, and we stay patient and thankful, knowing all things work together for good. Take it slow, step by step, as it feels OK to do. I wanted to see the good in this situation because I have been putting to practice your insight on your other thread about "power of thoughts." If we don't like what we see, we can try to change "how" we see it.
    Keep the peace of heart and mind, dear Tita. You are going to be alright. It's all pono.
    Aloha ke akua. Kalahou
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    Last edited: Mar 15, 2016
  9. New Leaf

    New Leaf Well-Known Member

    Thank you RN, it is good to guard our hearts. We should always guard them, to avoid sinking into the pit of despair. I am thinking that instead of stubbornly guarding mine, I will faithfully guard it. Trust in the Lord that things happen for a reason and keep plodding onward.

    Yes, Roxona, extra special. I am feeling a bit remiss in not reaching out to them. There, I said it. They are the ones who have suffered much through all of their parents comings and goings, back and forth. I will use this as a lesson to myself.

    This is so true, Kalahou, she was given a sacred name before birth, and has represented it well. Of course it would be Hoku, who would make herself the mediator......

    Thank you very much for putting this perspective out there for me to think upon. I am seeing through eyes of pain, rather than forgiveness. It will take some time to process. What you have written is true, it must have taken a lot for her to approach me. Kalahou, I remember writing to Feeling that I had a dream that Tornado came and hugged me. I must examine my heart and my stubborn pride and rethink this. I am caught between loving her so deeply, and all that has happened, the fear of being thrown under the bus again, the work it has taken to mend. What I must rely on, is faith and also that this has been a time of learning for me. I also need to trust in the Lord, have forgiveness, but go cautiously as well. I will pray on this.
    The pebble thrown into the still pond. Small steps.

    Thank you for reminding me Kalahou. It is much easier to write about and ponder these things, then put them into practice. As I sit here thinking on your words, I am recognizing that I am afraid to open up my heart again, afraid of future hurt. I don't want to have that devastating heartache.
    I do have to work on my faith, forgiveness and trust myself to move forward with understanding that I have learned much these past six months. Have I?
    I hope so.
    I do know that I cannot enable my children.
    Have I swung too far to protect my heart?
    To find an in between, where I can love my two, but also be careful that I do not get sucked into the drama go round, knocked about and dizzied by it.
    Radical acceptance.
    True peace of heart and mind.

    I must remember that as storms come and go, the howling winds fell branches, uproot trees, the forrest is in disarray, but as time passes new life springs forth.
    From devastation comes change and growth.
    The strongest trees dig their roots in deeper and ready themselves for whatever may come.

    I will work on this Kalahou, thank you for your wise words.

    The past, a lesson, the present, a gift, the future unknown.

    No matter what, it is important that I build upon a firm foundation of faith, dig my roots deeper into it and trust in God.
    Though I be fearful, I love my two with all of my heart and wish the best for them.

    Mahalo nui Kalahou, it is a new day.

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  10. Roxona

    Roxona Active Member

    Kalahou is wise! I was just thinking this right as I got to the part where you wrote this Leafy. I got a lot out of what both of you have shared. It makes me feel a little sunnier inside. Thank you both.
  11. Feeling Sad

    Feeling Sad Active Member

    Leafy, I was thinking about the hug being a first awkward gesture, as well as, your dream of the hug from your daughter. Remember that you sad that it was a nice dream and you wondered if she had the same dream.

    Remember that I told you that my dream was scary and that I woke up screaming because my son looked so strange. Then I said, no matter what, in my next dream that I would give him a hug...scary or not.

    You got a REAL hug! Yes, I understand all about putting up 'walls' and I do not blame you one bit.

    But, the hug was a small gesture of peace. She is afraid, as well. She probably felt uncomfortable.

    Yes, she should apologize, but for right then, her hug was saying more than words could say. Sometimes people feel so badly, they cannot find the words.

    I am glad that you got to hug your grandchildren. In addition, they know that you love them and that you are there for them. The importance of this is immeasurable.

    Baby steps, Leafy. I am happy for you, sister.
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  12. New Leaf

    New Leaf Well-Known Member

    Thank you Feeling, After reading responses and Kalahous words I was rethinking everything. I remembered the dream. I am very thankful to have hugged my grands, and yes, Tornado. Thank you Feeling.
  13. PonyGirl65

    PonyGirl65 Active Member

    Leafy, thank you for your heartfelt sharing of this powerful story.
    This morning, as I sit here writing this, I am perplexed. Who does that? Who rips out their mothers heart, stomps on it, has no contact, then waltzes in, as if nothing happened? No apology, no tears.
    Who does that?
    My daughter does.
    At this moment, I do not understand the lack of remorse.
    I don't think I will ever understand it.
    I think the lack of remorse, no apology, no tears is due to SHAME. I think your daughter feels ashamed of her actions. I think her shame may be so strong that it has turned into DENIAL.

    I know for myself, if I've done something 'shameful' it's easier to breeze right over it and pretend it never happened, rather than make a sincere apology for it. I think your daughter just wants to sweep it away, believing the memory will fade in time.

    I am so sorry you've been treated this way. I am so sorry for your lost dreams. :group-hug:
  14. New Leaf

    New Leaf Well-Known Member

    Hi Ponygirl
    This is probably true........or she does not even remember her actions, in a fit of rage, or on something. This does not excuse it.

    Now I am remembering that Hoku did speak with Tornado about making amends, but her focus was more on the list of "reasons" and blaming she resorts to so often that it has become a broken record of sorts, tapes reeling over and over again to justify her choices.

    I am working at my reaction emotionally. Reading some articles on detachment, and turning resentment into forgiveness. Forgiveness for my daughters actions, but also for my own peace of mind. The struggle really is mine, to let go and let God. Resentment only ties me to the past, ties me to the problem, but if I let go of that, then I can move forward.
    What I am struggling with is being able to love my two and protect my heart at the same time. I have always loved them, but have been too emotionally attached to their choices.
    Meaning, I will feel myself synchronistically going down with them as they stumble and fall along the path.
    This is not only unnecessary, but unhealthy for all of us in the long run.
    If I were able to see past the addictions and choices, the hurts and reactions and see the person behind the addiction, I wouldn't be so emotionally effected. (In theory, at least)

    Okay, this seems really contrary, but it is something I read and it kind of makes sense.

    "That is the addiction talking, not the person."
    It is not an excuse for bad behavior, rather a reality that frees me from feeling such hurt, pain and resentment.
    So instead of saying "who does that, my daughter does.."

    I can say, that is not my true daughter speaking, it is her addiction.
    It makes it way easier to let go of all of the emotions attached to the drama addiction causes.

    It doesn't mean I am condoning the choices and wrongful behavior, I just don't need to let it bother and consume me. It sounds kind of uncaring and cavalier, doesn't it?
    But how freeing, really, if I can just say, that is addiction speaking.
    Brush myself off and carry on......

    Thank you Ponygirl. I am sorry, too.
    But, I am trying to learn from this.
    Really, I wish better for my two, but I am a separate person, my dreams are my dreams and theirs are theirs.

    I worked hard at raising them in some difficult situations with my hubs, made some mistakes in parenting for sure, but life is messy sometimes and nobody is perfect.
    So, I will have to focus on my dreams for myself, and let my beloved children figure out what they want in life.
    If I can successfully work on detaching emotionally, then I will not be so bound to their addictive choices, and can love them anyway, without fear of being, well, broken.

    Easy to write about, hard to practice.

    Thank you so much for your response.
    Wishing us all peace of mind and heart......

  15. Roxona

    Roxona Active Member

    Leafy, I don't see it as sounding uncaring or cavalier. I think there's a lot of truth in it. Growing up, my father was a drug and alcohol abuser. They were his demons and he fought them every, single day. He wrote about them in his journal. Out of both of my parents, I was always closest to him even though he whipped me daily and would lecture and lecture and lecture...(eyes rolling into the back of my head). But he loved me. I know he did. He just couldn't control his demons. When he was sober, he was the most kind and gentle daddy. We had fun dancing and drawing and looking for treasures in junk yards together. That was my Dad. But when he drank or used...he was not the Dad I knew. He was someone else. Someone no one liked.

    When I was 19, he died in a car accident. There was nothing for me to forgive. I had forgiven him all along because I knew the person who was hardest on me was not the person he really wanted to be. That was just the addiction speaking.
  16. New Leaf

    New Leaf Well-Known Member

    Thank you Roxona, it just drives the point further, that the future is unwritten. I would hate to have something happen to my two, and have them think that I don't love them.
    I am sorry for your loss, so young to have your father pass. Your realization of who your father truly was and that his addictions were just that........that is radical acceptance of what is. How wise you are.

    I am trying to head in that direction......I think it will be freeing for myself and my family. To live and let go, but to love, just the same.

    Thank you for sharing this. It verifies the quest to remain present and be thankful for the blessings, then let the rest flow under the bridge....