Tuesday, June 26, 2018

Two More Thoughts

I would like to add two more attributes to the list of desired traits necessary, to find a reliable therapist:
  1. The price had to be right (good luck with that) since I was interviewing for a full time position unsuccessfully. and Adam was still collecting unemployment (Please don't knock this social-safely-net, because when you are uncontrollably forced to depend on it, it's somewhat of a life saver, and it's a dose of reality in the truest sense of the word). 
  2. Jordan had to feel comfortable and actually like and respect the person (which I'm not sure has happened to this day.) 
That is all.  👍😏

Thank you.

Us Too

Monday, June 25, 2018

Please, Not Again

At this point it was obvious we needed to do something.  Here's what I wrote:

I emailed Jordan's therapist because damn we need help. We're thinking maybe someone else would be better, but the thought of starting all over again... Ugh.  I don't know how or where to start, and I don't want to do this again.  It's crap. 

Do you know how impossibly hard it is to try to find someone good enough, fair enough, smart enough, sensitive enough, caring enough, experienced enough, level-headed enough, and honest enough, so that a mom feels comfortable entrusting her child's entire being to their care?

Oh, it's frickin hard.

Thank you.

Us Too

Friday, June 22, 2018


The next night things calmed down and went back to "normal" (believe it or not, that's how we rolled; no grudges, no holding onto the anger for very long) Jordan asked if she could practice for play tryouts.  My response was "Only if you are totally ready for bed before you start." Then I said the line I never thought I would utter to one of my children. "If you don't like it, there's the door, and good luck."

She decided to stay.

Here's a thought. Was she compliant because she witnessed Mom's "crazy" the night before? Did it make an impression?  Perhaps a better question would be, "Was the impression a positive one or a negative one?   Maybe it doesn't really matter.

Just two days after our night-from-hell, I wrote:  I know that all of this-- her whole life, has been somewhat "textbook".  I could have predicted a night like this from very early on.  I also wrote:  If we don't get her the help she needs, I wouldn't be surprised if one day she threatens to take her own life.  I thought this back in 2012.  Damn.

What would push a mother to assume that her first born child would continue struggling to the point where life would eventually push her towards the depths of despair?  Well, remember the time during summer camp when she refused to drink anything so she wouldn't have to use the bathroom with the bugs in it?   This would.

So many of the mental illnesses; Anorexia/Bulimia, Anxiety, Perfectionism, OCD, Addiction, Depression...they all have one common root:  A desire for control.

Yep. Her Too

Thank you.

Us Too

Monday, June 18, 2018

Black and Purple

There have only been a couple of times when I lost it. I mean yelled, screamed, had an outer body experience and was "watching" myself from above, almost like it wasn't actually me. It's horrible,  upsetting, and beyond scary. This was one of those times.

I hated that it happened.  I punched her door (her very hard door) a few times and wound up walking around with a black and purple hand for over a week. Try explaining that to someone at work. I screamed at her about how good she has it--how I was there for her when she had no friends, showed her how to use freakin tampons, hung with her when she volunteered for Girls On The Run when I co-coached. I was SO angry!

I was more hurt.  Up until this point we had been close and talked about everything: friends, boys, family, sex, being gay, being straight, drugs, religion, life, love.  And now it felt like she hated me.

I screamed "This is where you get your anger from. So what am I supposed to do now, CUT??"  This is when she began to cry.

CRINGE for the entire situation.

Do I have regrets?  Maybe some.  Kayla and Kevin were both home and hiding out in their rooms. I can only imagine what they were thinking.  But I'm not sure what I was supposed to do. What would have been more appropriate?  It's always been my innate reaction to meet somebody's emotional/psychological state at their level.  It's instinctual. Maybe it's a self protection mechanism, but I'm not sure. Should I have been calm and supportive?  Sad and devastated?   Some people may have reacted that way, but for better or for worse, I did not.

It was what it was, I guess.

Thank you.

Us Too

Wednesday, June 13, 2018

Worst Night Ever

I will never forget this night.  It qualifies as one of the worst of my life. (and Jordan's too 😢) It happened a little over a month after the run-because-of-arm-flab sighting.

Here's how it all went down, word for word. (I'll warn you, be ready for some harsh, cringe-worthy language. This is uncomfortable for me to share, but mental health and family issues are uncomfortable and hard and messy. If I thought we were the only family who dealt with this type of stuff, I wouldn't be sharing. The thing is, I've heard and seen enough to know that by no means are we the only family affected by mental health issues.  Yep.  Us Too.

What the fuck!!!  So now Jordan is cutting!? And she has the nerve to come down and point at her arm yelling, "If things don't get better, this is only going to get worse!"  Fuck her.  I don't deserve this shit. I tried to be all patient with her- Blah Blah Blah.  Well fuck it. She is going back to her therapist. This is crap and I'm sick of it.
I quote, "Dad, if I don't get my phone and Tumbler back, this is only going to get worse."  And she points to her arm where she scratched/cut.  Are you kidding me??? If that's not manipulation, I don't know what is.  I have no idea how we got a kid like her.  We weren't perfect by any means, but we tried to be pretty consistent. And why was she so angry that she had to cut? Because she was talking on her phone to her best friend and her cousin, while on Tumbler, while also doing her math homework.  All at the same time. Grrr.  At this time Kayla asked Jordan if she could use the computer and she rudely replied, "No, I'm doing my homework!"  
So Adam told Jordan to give him her phone, and when she didn't, he tried to take it.  She then screamed into the phone how her parents hated her and told Adam to shut up! What the hell? Who the hell does she think she is?


I'm going to stop here, before getting into my reaction.  As you can probably imagine, it wasn't pretty.  I was beyond pissed, scared, shocked and confused.

***Please don't forger that things are SO MUCH better now.  Jordan is a loving, wonderful, sensitive, intelligent, funny, and focused young woman, one who is willing to fight for the underdog and provide a voice for the voiceless. 😊***

Thank you.

Us Too

Sunday, June 10, 2018

Thoughts About Fed Up

Some thoughts about the last post:

First of all, I now know why Jordan didn't want to take a shower.  This is when she struggled with dermatillomania, and she still does. Today she asks me for help, and I do (more details about this to come later).  Back then she did not ask for help, and I had no idea.

Second of all, I was super stressed about traveling, so I can only imagine how she felt. It's difficult to be in someone else's home. That's all I'm going to say about that.

Thirdly, she was given a time restraint. It may have been four hours, but that didn't matter.  It was pressure, and any amount of pressure freaked her out. 

What else? 

Oh yeah.  I'm 100% positive that her behaviors were not being done for our benefit. Make that 1,000,000% positive. Although she has learned and grown and thrived, while living away at school for the past two years (I think more than any of us ever thought possible) it hasn't always been easy.  And here's why I believe this is true: 

A person who is born a Superhero will always be a Superhero. 

But no worries, because we can't forget about the trusty sidekicks.  Batman has Robin, Shrek has Donkey, SpongeBob has Patrick, and Jordan will always have Us. 😍

Thank you.

Us Too

Fed Up AF

I'm just going to take this straight from my journal because I couldn't make it any more real than it actually was:

It's not worth it to travel anymore. The fit thrown by Jordan before we left- instead of leaving at 2:30, we left at 5:00!! All because she didn't want to take a shower. She got up at 10:30.  So four hours isn't enough time to pack and get ready for a weekend trip? Really?
Sometimes I wonder if she would (or will) make it on her own. Maybe all this crap is for our benefit and she'll do fine on her own.  I hope so because right now she basically seems incapable of feeding herself and sleeping enough to function. We may need to implement the 504 plan next year. The high school teachers might not be as understanding and accommodating as the middle school teachers were, with regards to limiting her homework.  She still gets all A's anyway, so why would they say no?
It's sad to say, but sometimes I'm actually looking forward to her moving out. Fourteen years of this crap and it's getting old. Whether mental illness or stubborn attitude, it still sucks!
And to top it all off- I just saw arm flab in my sleeveless running shirt.  I'm going to run now.  Shit. 

And also cringe. 

Thank you.

Us Too

Thursday, June 7, 2018

The Love of a Wife and a Mother

Adam said there was no point in questioning and worrying about the past because it was wasted energy. He's so smart. :)  I agreed, but I couldn't always help it.  I felt (and still feel) very fortunate that he and I had been through enough together, that I knew I could count on him for support.  Here's what I wrote about our relationship and where I 'was' emotionally, back in March of 2012:

Adam and I are closer than ever now, after all these years.  In the beginning I was the stronger one, stable, secure, the teacher. Now it's changed.  Now he has to support me more often.  Life didn't used to scare me.  Now it does.  I think I was naive back then- just happy and naive. Now reality has set in and it scares me.  College, retirement, friendships... all a source of anxiety for me. Not all the time, but sometimes. My naive attitude that everything will "work out" is basically gone. I still hope that it will, but I'm not sure. 

So yeah, more good times.  Not. 

I never meant for this blog to be about me, but I'm finding that it can't always be avoided.  For starters, occasionally it's taken word for word from my old journals.  Not to mention that the intensity and connection between a mother and her child is like nothing else in the world.  So if Us Too is about Jordan, than I guess it has to be about Me Too.  😊

Thank you.

Us Too

Tuesday, June 5, 2018

Random Tidbits

This is a short one, because basically I couldn't figure out what else to do.

One night we turned off Jordan's light and took her lap top away. As you can probably imagine, it wasn't one of our most enjoyable evenings. The next morning she came downstairs and ate a tiny bowl of cereal- no milk, no cheese, and no fruit. (I was a bit anal about their breakfasts.) But boy did her hair and dress look perfect. So her priorities were based on her looks, and not on her health.  I wasn't happy.  And it didn't help that some kids told her how pretty she looked that day.  Jordan was thrilled.  Me?  Not so much.

I finally decided to reach out to her 8th grade teachers, briefly explaining our difficult homework situation, and her math teacher got back to me. Jordan was to do a half hour of math homework a night, and not one minute more.  Beautiful!  See?  Reaching out and asking for help is a good idea.

Jordan began doing her homework in the kitchen with a timer. Happy days!

Thank you.

Us Too