Posts Tagged ‘family

01
Oct
12

Surrogacy

It’s never been a secret that I didn’t have the best childhood. My father bailed when I was too young to even know I had a father, and my mother put partying and drugs before her children, and married a man who abused me. While both have attempted to atone for their actions, I’ve always wondered why the cycle stopped with me.

It’s long been discussed that abuse and addiction spiral children into a vicious cycle. The abused will abuse. But with me, that never happened. I’m not typically a violent person, even though I may be short-tempered and easily agitated at times. As far as drugs go, I’ve never done anything worse than pot. I’ve seen it, I’ve been around it, I’ve been offered it, but the thought never appealed to me.

Throughout the years of my childhood.. what went right? Surrogacy.

While my parents were making poor life choices, somehow, I always found people who DID love and care for me. I didn’t actively seek out these people, maybe they found me. No matter how they came into my life, I’ve had many “mothers”.

My grandmother and grandfather stepped up to the plate early in my life. My earliest memory is of my grandma and my Mom fighting over me, and my grandfather intervening and bringing me inside. My grandfather was the man who I will always be able to say loved me first, and the most.

As I got older, and really saw and understood my mother was an addict, I became close to my friends mother. Mea, or as I call her, Mummuhz, became my guiding light, and really took me under her wing. We had lost touch for several years, and when I moved back to the area, rekindling my relationship with her, her husband, and her son became an important, albeit easy, task. They re-welcomed me with open arms, and saved me once again. Not only is she a surrogate mother, but I call her son my brother.

Making the choice to move 3,000 miles away was difficult for me. Not only was I moving away from my sisters, who I’ve cared for their whole lives, and making it more difficult for my mother and I to repair our relationship, I was leaving my surrogate family. It was so hard to explain to all of them that I loved them, I wasn’t unhappy with them, I just needed to go where my heart was leading me. Like any loving family, they understood and supported me.

When I made the move, at first I felt a rush of adrenaline. Then, it started to sink in, I didn’t have any of my “Mom’s” here. But, in typical Pixie fashion, once again I have found family.

The BFF is my rock. She’s not a mother-figure to me, but the world would be infinitely more lonely had I not found her. She has helped me in more ways then I could ever explain. I didn’t just gain a best friend, I didn’t just find that there is someone out there who understands me. Her family has also welcomed me. Her sister refers to me as “Auntie Pixie” to her 4 children, whom I adore. Her mother has been loving and welcoming as well. Even her Aunt from up north has welcomed me.

It’s not always in person I find family either. For a very long time, members of the Julien-K message board were my family, some of whom I still talk to today. Those people brought me through some of the roughest of times.

When it boils down to it, as of late, I’ve looked into my life and really recognized all the life lessons I’ve learned. Don’t put metal in the microwave, don’t put the whole bottle of food coloring in your sisters bathwater (sorry Emi!), never trust an adult beverage that sounds like a porn film. But the most important lesson I’ve ever learned? “Family” isn’t blood, it’s all the crazies you choose to keep in your life.

And man, I sure picked a bunch of weird ones.

P.S.: According to WordPress, this is post #100! Wooo! I finally made it! Hey, shut up, it’s not a race!

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17
Feb
10

Blood runs cold

My family is… unconventional to say the least. We are not the Brady Bunch, nor are we the Cleavers. Most of us come from broken families that have patched ourselves together with other broken families. Some of us were never together, so we can’t be broken.

My grandmother married the man I knew as my grandfather in 1984. She had 3 children from a previous marriage, and he had 5. When they married in their 40’s, they never planned to have children together.

When I was born in 1985, my grandparents fell in love with me instantly. I was treated as if I were their own child. I grew immeasurably close to both of them. Even though my mother was not his daughter, I was his first grandchild. He never even considered putting the word “step” before granddaughter. Not once did it cross his mind that his blood did not run through my veins.

When I was 16 years old, I lost my grandfather. The world fell out from underneath me. After the world starting spinning once again, my grandmother and I found that his children turned an icy shoulder to us. They were downright nasty to my grandmother and I, even being so bold as to write a letter to her stating “He never spent time with his REAL grandchildren, because he spent so much time with YOUR granddaughter, and it’s her fault they don’t know him as well as they should.”

This week, I lost my great-grandmother, my grandfathers mother. Even after my grandfather past, Grammy Margaret treated me no differently then any of her “real” family. She continued to be warm and loving. Although we were never close, she always loved me.

Her service was tonight, and the rooms were filled with the people I always knew as my family. People I knew as my aunts and uncles stood arm to arm to pay their respects. 20-somethings I grew up with as cousins, played in the streets with, chased around yards at cookouts. Family, although 4 of his 5 children didn’t even bother to show up.

Only one of my cousins acknowledged my presence. My “aunts” and “uncles” gave me cold hugs and cold hello’s. I felt as if I was the white elephant in the room. Everyone knew I was there, knew who I was, but no one wanted to be warm to me.

So, Grammy Margaret, I hope you can forgive your family for treating someone the way you never would have dared. And thank you for loving me, even if they wouldn’t. I will dearly miss you.

——————————————————-

My Grammy Margaret suffered from dementia for quite awhile before she passed on, and it was always so hard to see such a strong woman losing herself like that. For today’s Awareness Wednesday, please visit Alzheimers.org for more information on this disease and how to help. Thank you.

I’ll shut up in a moment of silence for Grammy Margaret.




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