April 26, 2023
Here I am, 2 days from turning 40. Man, 40 years old, I can't believe it. I feel every bit of it, too.
I haven't posted in forever ago, I've been depressed and am not ashamed of it.
Life has been kicking my ass these past couple of years, which each one getting harder than the next.
Pandemic? That's nothing. Looting? No biggie. Mom's cancer? Brace yourself for more. Peanut's autism...it just kept getting worse and worse and so I couldn't bring myself to come on here and update on shit I was suffering through at the moment.
I don't know what it is about today that's brought me here, but part of it is hoping someday you get to read this stuff and understand your crazy mother. The why I am how I am part of it. I've been struggling with your diagnosis, so much. Let me explain.
It's not so much the diagnosis itself. I was already struggling with trying to break generational cycles with you. It's not something I can talk to about to many people, outside of my therapist, because they don't seem to get me. As the oldest child of immigrants, my upbringing was different than my siblings, and it's hard for them to see that. To them, it's like, our parents are the same, but I had a different childhood than my sister, and definitely than my younger brother. I was the first, they were young, they didn't know what the heck they were doing. I don't blame them fully. They were never taught to show love and affection. They did the best they could. I love them dearly and wouldn't change them for the world, despite their faults.
That doesn't mean I want to be like them. Though I have admiration and respect for them coming into a foreign country, where they didn't know the language and becoming parents at 19 and trying to navigate that world, something I myself wouldn't be able to do, that still doesn't mean I want to model parenting after them. They ruled by fear. As a child and teenager, I didn't enjoy that, so I'm trying to do right by you.
I don't want you to fear me. You already do, because my anger is a bit explosive, despite my better efforts. I don't want to hit you, I don't want to give you cruel and unusual punishments, I'm trying really hard to break that cycle. It's the only form I know how to discipline, since it's how I was disciplined, and so I'm starting from scratch here. Your dad is the same way, his parents would tell him to get in the bath before he was hit, as it would hurt more on wet skin. Like that kind of stuff stays with you for life and though I'm positive I will do something as a parent that will traumatize you and stay with you for life, I don't want physical violence to be one of those things. To this day, when I remind your grandparents of them hitting us, they try to downplay it as if I'm either lying or exaggerating. But those memories are not erased from my mind, even years later. And I don't want you to go through the same thing.
Already we do things a little different, I hug and kiss you every day. I say "I love you" and encourage you to say "I love you" multiple times a day. I read you a story before bed every night and lay with you until you fall asleep. And you're spoiled in other ways. Seeing your face light up when presented with a toy/gift makes my day, so you're very spoiled in that area. You are currently on medication that affects your appetite, so when you ask for McDonald's, you get it almost every time. Little things like that. I hope this helps you into adulthood.
I do get angry at God about your diagnosis. Not that you're on the spectrum, just that he didn't bless me with the patience needed to better suit your needs. I am a very impatient person, and you aren't able to process your emotions and that is just a bad combination. Nobody works my nerves the way you do, even though it's not intentional. And when I lost my patience with you and scream or yell, I immediately feel like shit. Almost as if I had hit you the way I was hit as a child. The guilt is overwhelming. You aren't aware that you are working our nerves, since you get frustrated easily. It's not on purpose, but still, I lose my patience with you and explode. Sometimes it's yelling, other times it's locking myself in a room away from you, so that I don't explode on you. But your young mind doesn't understand that mommy needs a break and that just gets you more upset.
I hope none of that stays with you long term. I hope that getting you on the right meds and with the right therapy, our relationship improves. I hope you don't grow up resenting me for how I treated you as a child, breaking cycles isn't easy. I hope you grow up knowing that you are my world and I love nothing or no one like I do you. I hope you feel that every single day. And if you don't, I am truly sorry. I am trying my best, and will continue to keep trying for the rest of my days. I love you.