Thursday, August 23, 2012

Attitude Check

I know I've blogged about attitudes before, but my QT yesterday gave me a yearly reminder.  And this time, I think I passed the test.

Eleven months ago, I began to suspect something was up with my daughter.  I prayed fervently I was wrong, but finally the time came and I couldn't ignore it any longer.  I confronted her, then dragged her to the crisis pregnancy center.  It was inconclusive; she would have to take another test in the morning.

I'm human; I burst into tears.  And my sense of humor helped, blaming the re-release of Love On The Rocks.  I first published it in 2002, and six months later I was pregnant with the youngling.  That book is cursed, lol....

The next day, it was a proven fact.  My baby was going to be a single mom.  I just put my arms around her and held her close.

"Let me get through the emotion, and then we'll deal with it," was what I told her.

Needless to say, the stress level in our home shot to epic proportions.  My spouse's emotions ran the gamut of 'I'll kill (fill in the blank:  me, the daughter, the boyfriend)' to 'I oughta throw both of you out of this house' to 'I'm NOT taking care of it!'.  I seriously began to think I needed to file for divorce.

I found her a doctor, got her started on the prenatal vitamins.  And then sent out a request for another one, since neither she nor I were thrilled with the first one.  Luckily, a friend came through and recommended an wonderful OB-GYN.  Her monthly visits were pleasant, and her dad even accommodated a few of her cravings.

But in March, I was so tired of taking his verbal abuse and feeling the strain of the financial situation, I consulted a lawyer.  And didn't get the answer I wanted.  Fortunately, I was spending a three-day 'vacation' away from him, and was rejuvenated.  And on the way home, received the news our financial situation was about to take a turn for the better.  And boy, did it.

His attitude changed.  The stress level in the house went down.  We came to some compromises about my weekly karaoke, one of the things we were fighting over.  He agreed to let me continue, and I agreed to be home by midnight.

June arrived, and so did Miss Alexandria Nicole.  Four days later, the spouse, who'd refused to come to the hospital, held her little form in his arms and visibly melted.

This past month, the boyfriend was thrown out of his house by his pot-smoking, meth-addicted mother, and the spouse actually let him hang out at our house, even letting me feed him dinner.  He drew the line at letting him spend the night, but consented to letting him sleep in our car.  That was two weeks ago.  He's since made peace with his family, and even the daughter got a little tired of him being around her all the time.

My point to all this?  I never got angry at the circumstances, or even God.  I prayed for guidance; I prayed for strength, knowing that if I fell apart, my daughter would suffer more.  If I hadn't decided to deal with this event, my daughter would probably be a HS drop out and living on the streets with her boyfriend.  Or I'd be divorced/separated and living on government assistance.

Yes, I've made sacrifices.  I've put my daughter's needs, and those of my youngest child's above my own.  And that's something else; for in turn with dealing with the daughter's issues, I was also dealing with an 8 y/o who'd been diagnosed ADD and having to get his medication dose figured out (that's why he's repeating the 2nd grade!), plus my CK dealt with the loss of a close friend by self-medicating himself with an illegal substance.  He was caught with it in March and is facing either six months in jail, probation, or a fine.  Or all 3.  I've also got him in a drug/alcohol program, which he'll complete this month.  And yes, he's home for the semester and attending classes at the junior college in our town.

And through it all, I've only blown up at CK once, and that was when I was made aware of his serious issue.  We've cried; we've hugged; we've talked.  But not once did I threaten to 'cut him off' of throw him out of the house.  We've dealt with the issue, and I seriously hope it doesn't return.  He's a smart kid; lesson learned.

Attitude affects outcome.  And there is an alternate reality out there I'm glad I didn't choose.  (Of course, there's the OTHER alternate reality where none of this happened, lol!  Yeah, I'd like that one....)

So what about you?  Is there an 'alternate reality' you'd wish you'd chosen, or have you made some wise choices?

PS:  Just found out my daughter's BFF, whose parents threw her out of the house earlier this month, and who moved in with her new boyfriend, is now pregnant.  This soon-to-be 19 y/o, who admits she gets bored with her PETS when they reach a certain age (case in point:  She left behind a cat and 2 y/o dog, because she wanted a puppy; now she has two puppies with the b/f), is NO WHERE responsible enough for this.  Hoping to talk some sense into her either today or tomorrow.  What the hell is going on with her parents???


msspencerauthor said...

Oh Molly, I'm sitting here in tears for you. Bless you. You're amazing. You absolutely have to support your children through everything even though you don't have to tell them the behavior is okay. But then they know it's not. I too went through a horrendous few years/emergencies etc. with my daughter--never occurred to us not to be there for her--and she came out the other side into the sun! Thank God still alive :). It sounds as though the whole family has grown & learned through this--I'd keep the BF in the car though (jk). Meredith

msspencerauthor said...

btw, are you having trouble posting on yahoo groups too?

Molly Daniels said...

Thank you for the kind words! My spouse isn't perfect (none of us are), but this 180 in his attitude has been proof of the power of prayer. He still doesn't understand me need to 'blow off steam' by belting out songs to a bunch of drunks, but hey, it's an ego boost to have people clapping after I've sung:)

Molly Daniels said...

And yes; I ended up switching to 'indie emails' rather than digest, just to post. HATE it. I 'whined' all over the LRC loop yesterday afternoon