Hey you MonsteRiser,
I have a confession to make, but only if you promise not to judge…. Scout’s honor?
Ok, here it goes…
I recently got custody of my granddaughter Promise and everything I knew to be true and sane and orderly in my life came to a screeching halt.
With the exception of a few chaotic things that I was working towards to embrace greater balance, I loved my life! I loved my freedom, and I loved being able to have a glass of wine in the middle of the day or take a long walk at night. I loved my peace room where I would go to pray and meditate and be still…
And now I had to give it all up.
While it was my choice to get custody of Promise (well, kinda my choice… that’s another story for another time), but after reality set in, I became angry. Not at Promise, but at my daughter for putting me in this position.
The first few days, I walked around numb and cried. It had been more than 15 years since my daughter, now thirty-three, had lived at home. I remember how free I felt when I returned home from driving her to college after becoming a mother at the tender age of 17. I was finally going to get to recover my youth and do me. Well, kind of because once a mother, always a mother. In fact, I’d argue that mothering my daughter became more challenging the older she got.
Anyhow, back to my confession…
So there I was numbing out, boo-hooing, and literally having an out of body experience as my menopause struggled to revive my innate maternal instincts. The next few days I enrolled Promise into my neighborhood school, attended PTAs and rescheduled, reworked and reshuffled my life.
There were days I couldn’t eat, think, breathe; and nights I’d wake up in a cold sweat thinking: WTF?
Then Suffering showed up! All glammed out. And the anger at my daughter would kick in again. Yes! I was angry at her! All the while trying desperately not to lose myself.
But I went through every emotion that Suffering threw at me. Anxiety. Annoyance. Agony. Anguish. Aggravation. Disappointment. Impatience. Misery. Sorrow. Stress…
As the hours turned into days and days into weeks, I knew I needed to figure out a way to do me again. If not, I wouldn’t be the only one Suffering hijacked. She’d hijack Promise too.
So little by little I started to integrate those things back into my life that kept me sane. I’d take long walks. Meditate. Listen to inspiring podcasts. And dance around my apartment with Promise.
One day, Promise and I had what we call a trust moment where we have a heart-to-heart and confide in each other about what we are thinking, feeling, needing and not judge.
I told her that she stresses me out when she’s not honest with me and doesn’t do her best. She told me that she’s sometimes not honest with me because when I get upset, I’m not calm.
Then Promise suggested that she write ‘I’ll do my best’ and I write ‘I’ll be calmer’ ten times and give it to each other as a reminder that we were in this together.
Writing those words within the margins of a composition page was like breathing air back into my lungs.
I realized Suffering had not hijacked me. I’d hijacked Suffering.
I invited Suffering into my life because I was too damn stuck in my own stoicism to realize that this little girl was a gift!
And Monsterisers, if I could get real honest with you, I kinda like having Promise around. Less the being able to have a glass of wine in the middle of the day or take a long walk at night, I’d come to truly enjoy our time together.
And more importantly, I now realize that Promise, the little girl who calls me Bumblebee, was not only there to shake up my stoic world but to teach me what it really means to do me…
XO… Stay inspired!
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in the comments below. I’d love to hear from you!
L.Y. Marlow empowers and inspires women to live a more purposeful and joyful life through guided self-discovery and embracing their authentic selves. A dynamic speaker, award-winning author and accomplished social entrepreneur, she advocates for women to confront and conquer their fears and tap into their passion, purpose, and power.