spending time with my boy has become a rare occasion now. I’m not sure exactly when it happened, but somewhere in amongst the chaos i lost hold of him. it might have always been going to head down this path no matter what the circumstances were but i can’t help but think that the more recent moments of uncertainty in our lives played an important part in his decision to no longer live with us. Life for our family has been wonderfully hard over the years with so many dynamics to contend with, toddlers and teenagers, autism and more autism. I can imagine for a thirteen year old boy finding your place in amongst all that is almost impossible. He was lost, i could tell that much, surrounded by too many females, who all had something to say about his well-being and the directions he was taking. He didn’t have anyone to follow lead from, to really understand the depths of his own wanting and confusion in all of this. Everyone who he was supposed to matter to, was too caught up in being held captive to their own devastation and we failed him terribly. I failed him terribly. He was suffering and i was spread far too thin to keep grip of him. He wanted out, he needed out, so I surrendered and let him go. He is settled now, living with his father and for now it seems it’s what he wants and needs. For the first time in his life, he’s getting to know his dad, really know him, right down to the finer details of how he fits into life with him now. I understand that this is important for him to do, that to understand and know his father better will in time give him greater understanding for why things played out the way they did. It has been really hard stepping back, to not be the one who is guiding the way and gently maneuvering him back on track when he gets himself a little lost. I am having to detach, not from loving him, but from the responsibly of being the one who is going to show him the way. He, has chosen another for that role, now. As hard as this particular change has been to our tribe, it has unexpectedly brought with it a space for breathing. A space for me to completely let go of one of the heavy challenges i was carrying. It has allowed for things to slow down, for the constant rhapsody that was flowing between my two sons, to settle. It has allowed me the room to be more gentle on myself and more importantly more gentle on him. We are moving to a new dance now and it seems to be working better. Spending time together when it happens, is more earnest now. It takes on a level of importance that it always should have had. It’s possible that this time was always going to present itself at some stage in his life, where he would feel that he needed to go, but it came so much sooner than i was expecting. I am alright with it now, and even at times i am quietly thankful for his decision.
‘before you say yes, get him angry. See him scared, see him wanting, see him sick. Stress changes a person. Find out if he drinks and if he does, get him drunk you’ll learn more about his sober thoughts. Discover his addictions. See if he puts you in front of them. You can’t change people, baby girl.
If they are made one way, it doesn’t wear off. If you hate how he acts when he’s out of it now, you’re going to hate it much worse eight years down the road. You might love him to bits but it doesn’t change that some people just don’t fit. ‘
-words from inkskinned.
And as a father, it is you that will teach her, her worth when she begins the journey searching for love, She will look to how you loved her, how she is seen in your eyes, if she is all that matters, and that there is no greater love than that between a father and daughter if it is done right. You will teach her to be brave, to speak her mind, to feel worthy, intelligent, important and beautiful, she wont go looking to boys to replace you, if you stay beside her. Know that she will watch you, the way you are beside a woman, the way you love, they way you respect, this is how she learns how to be treated by the ones she lets into her life. This is how she will know how valuable she is. As she grows, she will be demanding, complicated and messy, and at times she will push you to your limits. She will undoubtably test the love you have for her, she will want you to prove it to her, fight for her, she will do all of this to see if you will stay, to see if you love her enough in all of her shades.