A Bad Beginning Does Not Inevitably Lead To A Bad Ending.

Yesterday Derek and I were talking about how frustrating it can be that Trace does not eat well- at all. He joked around that we should be happy because once he hits 16 I will be ripping my hair out with how quickly he will empty our fridge. Derek said it was common for he and his brother to eat his parents out of house and home at that age. I asked him if his mom ever got upset with them for eating all the food so quickly, that woman must have had to shop like crazy to keep up with those two boys!
"No, she never got mad. She was really good about it and never said anything."

Derek's parents are saints. In every sense of the word. I have said it before, and I will continue to say it- they are beyond amazing parents and people. 

I had quite a different upbringing and have struggled for years to overcome the sadness and confusion it has brought me. I spent years in therapy and on medication after medication looking for an answer or magical cure to be able to move on from where I came from. Nothing ever worked. I spent such a long time asking myself, "Why me?". I hurt, and I hurt so very badly. I wanted what other kids had in a family. I wanted the love I saw in other families. I wanted to be wanted and loved and appreciated. And it just seemed so far off for me. I will admit I spent alot of time feeling pity for my circumstances as a child and teen. 

Yesterday something clicked. I was hit so hard that it brought me to tears. All that time spent asking "Why Me?" was answered by my husband in one nonchalant remark. 
"I chose my mom. Just like you chose yours, Kelly." 
 After all these years, it literally could not have been handed to me any more simply. 

I chose my mom. 

Allow me to explain a little- I believe that before you are born you are allowed the opportunity to chose your life's path- or your own "river". Here is a wonderful analogy of  "life as a river"  by Betty Eadie's book "The Ripple Effect

"Our life is like a river. The destination is set, but the method of our journeying is up to us. We can cruise down the middle of the river at top speed, or we can hug the shore and spin around in eddies. We can crash over rapids or chart a safer path between obstacles. We can slum along the bottom in the mire and slime of sediment, or we can glide along the sparkling surface where the air is clean. The river is ours from birth to death. How we'll navigate it is determined by the hundreds of small choices we make each day.
"To discover our mission in life we must see challenges as opportunities for growth and then face them head on. Each challenge measures our strengths and progress. Even when trials cause pain or sorrow, we must look for new lessons in the pain and ask God for the power to learn and to grow from it. Suffering focuses our attention on what matters most, and with God's help, we can strengthen our spirits by learning patience, tolerance and love. These lessons learned, we become co-navigators with God. But when unlearned, we go into the eddies, spinning around, making little progress, even blaming God for our unremitting suffering."

 She then goes on to explain that although some people start out in crappy situations they should not feel like that sets the course for the rest of their life time- 

"But, life is dynamic, and the river stretches and bends as we go. A bad beginning does not inevitably lead to a bad ending. In fact a bad beginning can give us strength to create a good ending."

I chose my mom, I chose my circumstances as a child so that I could change them as an adult. I chose my mom so that when I became a mother- I would know how to love stronger than I was loved. I know that every parenting action I make is a result of how I was brought up. I believe so strongly in being the best I can be for my kids, I am a fierce mommy. I work harder at parenting then I have worked on anything else in my life. I take my job extremely seriously. Having children is not just an "accident" or "part of life" for me. Being a mom is a lifestyle for me, and I am so proud of how hard I work at helping my tiny people grow into well adjusted and very loved big people. 

If it weren't for how I was brought up I may not have taken this mothering thing as serious as I do. I may have  parented my children with a whole different outlook, or do it with less love, or not care as much about their emotions, or treat them lesser than what they are. My whole world could have been different- therefore their whole world would have been different. 

So after yesterday, I have one thing to say. 

Thank you, Mom. 
I know you had your own things to deal with- and I can sympathize more than ever now, that raising two kids by yourself must have been hard as hell. You tried,  you gave us all of you that you could and shit happens.
I am now ok with the fact my childhood wasn't the typical loving, enriching, wholesome experience. 
Because you know what? It gave me the fire I needed to provide that for my kids. You are my mom and I will always love you so much- no matter what happened in the past. 

I feel like another large hole has been filled in my heart and I can move on from this now....  
Now what did I do with that box of Kleenex?

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