Sharing Life Stories and Life Lessons … part 6 in Write the Blog You Want To Read


Writing a Blog I Want To Read
I realize I want to read real life stories on a blog.
If someone has life lessons
to share in a positive 
way
I want to read.

I want to feel connected.
I want to feel I am not alone
in struggling
to make all of 
the aspects of my life work.

I appreciate 
the beautiful blogs
but my heart 
needs to learn 
and grow
and know
although 
our struggles might be different
we are not alone
in 
our journey 
that is  life.

So
this is why 
I will
share 
one of 
my stories
today.



Having an Estranged Child
Is a lesson in 
Learning Unconditional Love


It has been a challenging week for me
emotionally.
With Mother's Day
around the corner
it is a holiday
for me 
that pulls 
the scab off
 a festering wound.
Makes me think about 
my middle son who 
has chosen to estrange himself
from our family.

I have had nightly dreams
about him all week.
Dreams where I am
so reminded of
what a great soul he has
and 
how very, very much I miss
and
 love him.
He  comes in the dreams
at different ages.
When he comes
there is no recent past 
full of hurts on both sides.
He is just a son I love.


I recognize
the sweet little boy
who I used to kiss on the cheek 
at night
and 
he would then touch that spot
and tell me
he was pushing it into his  heart
so he would have it always.

Having a child choose to
not be a part of our family
has brought with it 
such a mixed bag of emotions.
It is a choice 
that effects
everyone 
left behind in the wake.
Our family history
has been shaped with it.


Looking back 
had I known then
what I know now
I might have done some things differently.
It's hard to say.

I know
before he left
I took his anger personally
and
reacted to the anger
rather than
realizing the pain he was in.

I know in retrospect
I most likely
made him feel 
he was conditionally loved
based on his choices.
That was never true
but 
he might have felt it.
I just don't know.

When I first
heard from my husband
my son's choice
to have nothing to do with our family
I was 
startled
stunned
shocked
and
then I got angry.


Within the anger was 
a swirling mixture
of also being
 humiliated and embarrassed
and
ashamed
that someone who I loved
so much
would reject me in such a fashion
and 
reject the others
that I also love dearly.


That type of rejection
rocked me to my knees.
Made me question 
what type of person
what kind of Mother 
was I.

I have certainly dug deep in the aftermath to do the work
to continue to change where I need to.

I also continually try
to find some good
and
positive lessons
in this heartbreaking situation.


I have learned
to be more gentle in my 
family
and 
personal relationships.
I consciously choose
to focus on the good 
and 
realize
life can be hard on us all
so kindness really does matter.


I have tried
to convey
to all of my three children
I love them for simply being themselves
and 
not for their accomplishments.
While at the same time being there to
celebrate their achievements.
Like this week
when my daughter
after four years as an honor student 
got accepted into Grad School.


When the relationship with my son
began going sour
I used to truly hope
it was all my fault
because if it was
then I could change
and 
make everything good again.


Instead
I have learned
that I must respect 
his decision.


I have worked through my anger.
I am no longer 
humiliated,  embarrassed or ashamed.
I know I did the best 
I could with what I knew at the time.


I pray my son 
knows how very much he is loved.
I still send him texts
saying so.

I pray my son 
gets to a place in his life
he can recognize
his own inherent worth.

I  pray
this is a journey
where he will 
come back to us.


I realized today
that 
through
his estrangement
I have learned 
to 
truly 
love unconditionally.

To Love 
without the weights and measures
of reciprocals.
To love past
 anger and hurt.

It has been a long road
but I have learned much on the journey
and
will continue to search
for any good
in such a sad situation,

I realize
I will always have a hole in my heart
as long as he is away.
But
as Leonard Cohen says

"There is a crack in everything
that's how the light gets in".


As always my friends


I wish you love and joy
as you find your own light.









29 comments:

  1. This must be so terribly difficult for you, when I imagine what life with children would have been like, it is of course the Platonic ideal. It's easy for me as a non mother to forget that children evolve in their own way.
    My blog isn't personal at all, I admire those who can do it, but I am British and we just don't do that sort of thing!

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    1. Thanks Tabitha my dear! I do love all things British … but that part … I just couldn't do :))

      xoxo
      Tamera

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  2. Tamera, I truly believe there will be a day when the prodigal will return. Never lose hope...he is a work in progress, as we all are, and his progress is a different one. Seeing how caring and loving you are on this blog, I know that love will be needed by him again and he will return for it. Wait, have hope, and believe.

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    1. Pam thank you so much for this gift of encouraging word … they are a gift to my soul.

      xoxo
      Tamera

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  3. Good morning Tamera: I have been reading your blog for several months now and found it through The Rich Life on a Budget. I have enjoyed it thus far but none more than today's topic before Mother's Day. You see, I am an estranged child (at age 54) to 80 something parents and it was also my choice. The funny thing is, I don't feel bad or guilty about it and neither does my mother! Instead, my mother makes me feel like I should find another 80 something woman to act as my "surrogate" mother. I know my parents love me and as their child, I always feel it and vice-versa (actually, I have doubts about my mother's love for me). My reason for distancing myself from them is because of their "enabling" issues with three of my younger siblings. I think what keeps me happy --even at this age -- amid this heartbreak, is that I did NOT become my mother and I am so very glad. I give thanks everyday for that and for being my own person. Happy Mother's Day Tamera...

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  4. I have been thinking about you this week as we approach Mother's Day weekend. Thank you for sharing your story so thoughtfully. Rejection is a humbling experience that can bring you down to your knees. And that is where we begin to grow. . Best wishes to you, Tamera.

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  5. Know that you are not alone. Reading your words gives me comfort in my own situation with my son, as I hope that knowing you aren't alone in this path may give you some comfort as well. Life is a big jigsaw puzzle and sometimes I wonder if I got a box with the wrong pieces. But I have confidence that it will all come together in the end. It sounds like you are an active observer of life, and are engaging with it to the end of self examination and self discovery. Life was never meant to be fair, nor easy, so I say Bravo to all of us who keep going.

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  6. Oh...Tamera. I feel kindred today. My blog post is "petite fête de lumière".
    ...a small feast or festival of light.
    I have faith that your son will re-engage one day.
    { Fueled by faith and light on the road to peace of mind.}
    Happy Mother's Day, Tamera!
    withLove.

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  7. Tamera, what you've said about unconditional love makes you truly a wonderful mother. Relationships with our children can be complicated. Personally, I am going through a transitional period with my own son who is growing into a young man and also as a daughter to a mother to whom I am estranged. Your words are very meaningful to me. Your thankfulness shines through and is very infectious! Happy mothers day this weekend! I will raise a glass thinking of all us mothers and how hard we work-we are amazing individually and collectively.

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  8. What a beautifully written and deeply loving piece. Your honesty and humility shines through as gloriously as your style and beauty. It's hard to imagine that as mothers we can't see what lies within our own children. We should be able to see it all and fix it all! Therein lies the hardest part. Yet, I believe that it's our humanity and the acceptance of our own imperfectness that makes us kinder and more loving people. And, in turn, allows our children to not expect perfection in themselves or in anyone else. As we raise our children, we loose sight of that because we are blinded by the romantic notion of what a good mother is (or should be). We set the bar so high for ourselves in every part of life that even a super human can't reach it! Yet, we allow ourselves to be tormented by not being able to reach it! Silly girls!!! In turn, we grieve and torture ourselves to the point of intense disappointment. All of a sudden, we are a spectacle in our children's lives--one that we don't want to be! I had to learn the hard way that I will disappoint my children with who I am, I will sometimes make errors in judgement and do many things that I am not proud of and I will not be able to fix all of their woes in life and I will not know always know how to be the best mother. And, I will allow them the same. In the end, I will teach them that even mothers are human (I'm pretty sure they got that message...although they do forget sometimes....). But, most importantly, I shall love them madly and with all of my madness....no matter what. Hugging someone during the great times is the easy part--holding them during the hard times is what makes us who we are. You are holding your son....always.
    Happy Mother's Day to you. And, many blessings to your son and all of your family as you navigate these days.
    Onward!
    Judi

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  9. It must be extremely difficult for you to write this post but one that must give you a sense of peace just by saying it.
    We bear these babies and raise and nurture them never knowing how things will turn out in the end....you are a very brave woman and I admire your strength. Take care.

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  10. Judy, well said.

    Dearest Tamera,
    I know this is painful. Too deep. He is not a prodigal. He has the personal respect for himself, to wal his own path. His strength is so much like both of his parents.
    A shift in how things are viewed, is often helpful toward healing wounds.
    I don't agree with the delivery, but I understand what often leads to this choice.
    Please remember at two when he couldn't find his words, he would get frustrated and even act out at times. Progressive development stages needed new words, and the same.
    Boys don't have all the words they need. Sometimes they simply need space, and the assurance their words will be heard - and respected.
    Until then, he loves you and the rest of his family. Your imprint is un-eraseable. He has always been a boy similar with so many amazing gifts as you are also endowed.
    He is not a prodigal. He is following his own, as you also.

    May you rejoice in Mother's Day with the knowledge you've created a man so willing to stand on his own, he does.

    I miss him in the zoom-zoom stroller!

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  11. Tamera, I'm so glad I stopped by today. I was actually thinking of you and remembering the dynamics with your son. And I know it's soooo hard on days like Mother's Day. It looks like you've gotten so much wisdom in these comments, I couldn't possibly offer you more. Although I do want you to know that we share similar beliefs. You are so right. We all do the best we can with the emotional tools we've got at the moment. And I think that realization has to be your comfort when it comes alongside the unconditional love and the proverbial olive branch that you offer. Anger is such a "stuck" emotion, and I hope your son is able to move beyond it sooner than later. In the meantime, I admire the humble honesty and wisdom you share here and I offer you my support and friendship... I wish you a wonderful Mother's Day with your other kids, and congrats to your daughter. What a glorious bit of news about grad school.
    xo
    Leslie

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  12. this touched me so deeply. Such personal writing - thank you for sharing. It truly made me pause and reflect today . I clash with my son so often, as we just have the same personalities. Yet I love him so much . I can't imagine how it would feel if I was in your place, but I take note of what you say about ensuring that it is clear that they have the message that my love is unconditional . Thinking of you this weekend and praying that in due course you all will be reunited and reconciled.

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  13. Tamera, you write with such emotional honesty and depth about this most painful issue, and I commend you for it. I can't agree with the first comment that such openness and clarity are alien to us Brits, I think it is about personality, a willingness to share, to be vulnerable, to reveal hard truths about one's life. Some people are brave enough to do that, some are not, but I am not sure nationality has much to do with it.
    I just wanted to tell you that I am sorry for the ongoing pain of this estrangement, and I hope very much it is resolved at some point in the future. I don't think I am very good at unconditional love, and you have reminded me to try harder. Well, I think the love is unconditional, but my approval is not. I can imagine reacting very angrily in similar circumstances. But you are doing the only thing you can do now; leave the door open, let your son know he is loved, and wait until he is ready to find his way back to you. xxxx

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  14. Dear Tamara, your thoughts and words truly reached my heart in more ways than you can imagine. I hope and pray that one day you will be reunited. You are a special woman and it is indeed hard to look at our lives and examine them so microscopically and not necessarily find an answer. Love and acceptance, kindness and consideration, there is always room in the world for more.....

    xoxo
    Karena
    Soiree by Danielle Rollins Giveaway!

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  15. Tamera, my dear, with Mothers Day approaching our hearts always break once again, over time I have come to accept this and simply let the day unfold and follow along.I feel sure your son knows of your deep love and one day in his own time will reconnect.I admire your ability to be so honest and open about your feelings . I am not there in terms of my blog but feel I do have a story that like you could be of some comfort to others. Take care. X

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  16. Tamera, are you familiar with the book Moving to the Center of the Bed by Sheila Weinstein? I have thought of you for several days while I am finishing this book. While it is not about the same situation as you are going through with your son, the meaning is still there. The author lost her husband to a rare form of dementia and the book tells of her journey of moving to the center of the bed - which is symbolic of finding her center in life. The book clearly describes her feelings of having lost her soul and trying to find meaning in her life again. Is such a powerful read, even if the circumstances of her life don't match ours. The meaning is there. If you have time you might want to check it out on Amazon. Came recommended to me and so glad I ordered it. Thank you for sharing your story. Being so honest, open and raw is not easy. But so much comfort when we allow ourselves to speak what is on our hearts and to find out one is never alone on the journey. You are not alone.

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  17. Tamera dear-Your story is beautiful, poignant and bittersweet. You share the wisdom and the pain in such an honest way. Your journey into complete, unconditional love is truly inspiring. It's often in the deepest, darkest of times that we grow the most and see the light. We've talked personally and you know my strong belief, fueled by my experiences in my profession, is that your son will return in time. I see the metamorphosis and the realization in families on a daily basis. I sensed you were feeling this way approaching mother's day and I wanted to reach out and let you know "you are loved". I'm pleased you like the bracelet. I had you in mind when I bought it. ;)
    Wishing you a beautiful day on Mother's Day,
    xx, Heath

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  18. this is a powerful post. I admire your strength. We all feel humiliated and embarrassed attires and I admire your strength in moving through this to acceptance. How did you do it? x

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  19. Tamera, my heart goes out to you! I have to tell myself constantly, "This too shall pass" and quite literally give my children to God because there is so much I can't control. I had very similar struggles with my oldest daughter a couple of years ago which brought me to my knees. When I finally accepted that she was on her own journey and my role in her life was to model healthy behavior I began to breathe again. Having kids is truly like having your heart walk around outside your body!!

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  20. He touched your kiss on his cheek to "push into his heart".Your LOVE is there.Let him do what he needs to do................as you are doing.
    XOXO

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  21. I am sure he will find his way home...

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  22. You are brave and a wonderful example. Your words have touched me, I also have an estranged son and Mothers Day is not the same. I try to remember how blessed I am with the connection to my other son, but a piece of my heart is missing. I have seen restoration begin this past year, so I know through God there is hope and I believe your prodigal will return because of your love and faith. God Bless You and your eloquent words, I needed to hear them! Christy

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  23. My son left home for 5 years from the age of 17 years. He refused to have contact but I made sure that he always knew where I was in case he needed me. He arrived one day unexpectedly and we have been wonderfully close ever since. I just accepted him back without question. He has turned into a wonderful husband and father well respected in his community.
    Your Son will wake up one day and realise that he is loved, and he will return.

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  24. Thank you for being transparent Tamera. Your story has tugged at my heart. I'll be praying for your son as he searches for the truth. Love will prevail. ~Ann
    Tarnished Royalty

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  25. My husband had been gone for about 7 months, I contacted Dr.Lawrence from other testifiers and within a few minutes of speaking with him, I realized that Dr.Lawrence spell was the one person whom I could completely trust. I didn’t expect the spell would work so fast. Within 48 hours, my husband was back in my life. I want to express my warmest gratitude to Dr.Lawrence. I’ll never ever forget all the happiness you gave me. I’ll like to share his contact email: Drlawrencespelltemple@hotmail.com

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  26. Beautifully written.

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