Posted in Uncategorized

Email

Today this email popped up on my phone:

Just a simple friendly reminder of D’s birthday.

But it hurt me to my core. Added to the fact that,yes, D’s birthday did pop up as a reminder from my calendar because it got overlooked when we were deleting things.

It hurts, you guys. It just hurts. I’m not okay and I’m wondering will I ever be ok? I know we made the right decision. D didn’t want to stay here and when an 8 year old asks you for a plane ticket to move home and talks about moving home every. single. day. you finally give him what he wants. I pray that he and Q are happy. That’s all I want for them.

It’s all I want for me too. I just want to be happy and over this and it just keeps hurting me. We were so excited last year. We wanted this. We wanted them. We wanted kids.

I just can’t believe it sometimes. That this year is so much different from last year. We have no contact with them. We don’t know how or what they are doing. We don’t facetime with them. They don’t ask to see their room or the dogs or tell us they love us. We don’t get to tell them we love them or buy books for them or play video games with them. We listened to what D wanted and somehow I feel like the caseworkers are punishing us. Just because we listened and followed through on what he wanted, we don’t get to have any contact? Or even just know that they are doing well? (its not fair!!!!)

I could go on and on about the things that are different but I won’t. Because it all boils down to one thing: last year we were preparing to have two boys and this year we don’t have them.

I hate that it went wrong. I hate that we were lied to by caseworkers. I hate that they moved D here when they shouldn’t have, it wasn’t what he wanted!!! I hate that kids in the foster system have no choices. Mostly I just hate that they aren’t here.

I’m not ok and I don’t know what to do about it. I’m really, really struggling. I want to crawl in my bed and never come out.

I don’t know what to do. But I know I’ll just keep keeping on. I’ll keep believing in God. I’ll keep having faith in His plan. I’ll trust in Him.

xoxo

nikki

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Posted in Life

Fears & This Is Us

Hello! This post contains *SPOILERS* for the tv show, This Is Us. You’ve been warned.

 

 

Although, I don’t see how there could be any spoilers for This Is Us. We’ve known Jack’s dead since season 1 and we knew it was a fire since the beginning of Season 2. Anyways…

I’ve found that writing my fears and doubts out here helps to get them out of my head. And last night I could not sleep after watching This Is Us. I have TWO major fears: 1.) SNAKES (i cannot stand snakes, i scream like a little girl if i see one) and 2.) FIRE, I don’t know why but I am a huge worrier about fire, I unplug all my appliances, I’ll wake up in the middle of the night and run downstairs to make sure my oven is off. So, last nights This Is Us didn’t do me any favors. Thankfully, they didn’t have snakes too or I never would have slept!

I love the show, I do. I really LOVE that Sterling K. Brown keeps winning awards for it :)! I like how they dive into issues. I was actually pleasantly surprised how they portrayed Foster Care. Although it wasn’t 100% realistic, I’d give them about 65% realistic mostly because kids just don’t acclimate that quickly and I also feel like she would have thrown a bigger fit about not being able to see her mom in prison.

But last night’s episode completely threw me. It was one of my BIGGEST FEARS. A tiny, old kitchen appliance starting a HUGE fire and the fire detectors not working?!?! I could not sleep. That fire was HUGE. I would fall asleep and then it would seep into my dreams and I would wake right back up. I know it’s a tv show but I also know it’s a reality that happens. Thanks, This Is Us.

Although, it’s not that just. I’m currently peeling back the onion that is my relationship with my own biological father and my emotions are pretty raw right now. I’m dealing with the reality that I was emotionally and mentally abused. My mom has shared a memory with me that showcases that abuse and while I should have memory of it because I was nine years old when it happened, I have memories of that time but just not of this one situation. (I’m not quite ready to share the situation yet but I hope to share it with you one day). So I have realized that there were needs that were not met by my biological father and that has caused me a lot of trauma that I didn’t know about. There are incidents apparently that were so traumatic to me my brain has hidden memory of them.  So, to bring this full circle, watching This Is Us and how their father loved them so much has only highlighted how my own father didn’t care about me. And that makes me feel even sadder that they lost him and I still have mine who doesn’t care about me.

I really wanted to have that kind of relationship with my father. I wanted him to be proud of me. I just wanted him to love me. Jack loved his kids. He loved them no matter what they did. I’ve never had that from my father.

Wow. Okay. I guess I didn’t realize that last nights episode was more about Jack’s relationship with his kids than the fire. This is why I love this blog. Somehow typing it all out helps me get my thoughts out and helps me figure out what I’m really dealing with.

Although fire still does scare me, we have plenty of fire alarms, we are very good about unplugging appliances and our husky hates the sound of the fire alarms so I know he would get us up if he heard them.

My husband lost his mother when he was 21, they were incredibly close and so This Is Us hits him too. There have been times when I have wondered “why did he lose his mom, who he was so close too, and my father who has abused me and wants nothing to do with me is still alive? where’s the fairness?” I’d rather he had his mother than I have my father. It just doesn’t seem right. Even though This Is Us is a tv show, I say the same thing to myself “why did they lose their father who loved them so much and I still have my father who doesn’t care to be in my life?” I’d trade with them too. And maybe that’s not right but it’s how I feel. You have to realize that my father has never tried with me but he’s been there for my brother and my ex-step-sister, he really loved her. He was there for her, for every school event, took care of her when she was sick and reached out to her after he divorced her mother. He wanted to have a relationship with her, he tried with her. He never tried with me, the relationship we did have was all because I tried. I tried and I tried and I tried. So you’ll have to excuse me if I feel like I would rather my husband’s mother be here with us than my biological father.

I’m hurting right now. I’m in a very emotionally raw place. Finally realizing that a lot of my mentality about failing and disappointing people all has to do with my biological father has left me raw and easily hurt. I wish he would have supported me like Jack. I wish he would have loved me. I wish he would have been different. But I have to deal with the reality in front of me.

I have no good way to end this post today. This Is Us, I love you but last night’s episode was rough.

stay strong.

xoxo

nikki

Posted in Life

I choose

Whenever approaching something new, I look at it as hard or too difficult. I choose to look at things this way because that way when I do fail at them, it’s not a surprise.

I have chosen to live most of my life this way. Just already embracing that I am going to fail at everything I try. I’ve been jealous of people who seem so “happy-go-lucky”, never thinking that I could live that way too. I blame a lot of it on my depression but what it its not? What if it’s just my mindset?

My husband asked me the other day, what was the most hurtful thing my biological father ever did to me? Without missing a beat, I answered “when I was ten years old and he told me he hated me”. True story. I was ten and I was mad and I told him I hated him, like a normal ten year old, and he looked right at me and said “I hate you too”. I honestly feel like a parent should NEVER say that to their child even if their child says it. After that, I couldn’t do anything to earn my father’s love. And I’ve been trying and trying and trying and failing and failing and failing. And that failure has just seeped into my life. It’s permeated every inch of my being and my thoughts. Every time I look at something, I immediately think of how I will fail at it. I never look at anything and think about how I can succeed at it.

For Christmas, my father came to my home to pick up my brother and his wife. He hadn’t been at my home for more than a year and he commented on how my kitchen looked. Now, I spent days peeling wallpaper and painting and months making all the decorations, he commented that it looked good and asked how I got the wallpaper off. I told him “oh i rented a steamer from Home Depot..” he cut me off with “oh so you took the easy way out”. No, I still spent hours peeling it off, it was just a little easier with the steamer. That is how our whole relationship has been. He has always complimented me with also making me feel bad (does that makes sense?).

Some of my depression also steams from our relationship. When I finally spoke about my dark thoughts, part of me thought he would reach out and he would want to be a part of my life again. Wrong. He shipped me off to therapy and complained to my mom about the cost.

I’m finally realizing that I am not a failure. I’m not a failure in my life just because my father doesn’t want me in his. There is/was nothing I could do to make him love me. To make him want me. Just because he is my biological father doesn’t mean I need him in my life. I don’t need to be accepted by him.

I’m changing my mindset. I want to approach things with the attitude that “I CAN DO THIS”. And if I happen to fail, okay, but I don’t want to go into things with the attitude that I’m a failure. I’m not. One person in my life has had control over me for too long. I’m breaking free.

Will it be easy? No, I know it won’t. I’ve been living with this hanging over my head for almost 20 years. I can’t break it in a day. But now that I’m aware, I will break free. I will be successful.

I AM NOT A FAILURE. AND NEITHER ARE YOU. (whatever you may be struggling with, whether it’s similar to my story or completely different, you can beat it. you are not a failure. you are stronger than you give yourself credit for.)

xoxo

nikki

 

Posted in Clinical Depression

Exercise?

Starting in January, I started working out with a personal trainer. Hubs and I both want to get healthier and in better shape so we decided training with a personal trainer would keep us both accountable. We’ve joined many gyms in the past, went for maybe two months and then stopped going. We need somebody to hold us accountable.

Ok, working with a personal trainer is AWESOME! The workouts he gives me are personalized and after just two weeks, I am feeling much stronger!

But that’s not what this post is about.

The past couple weeks I have had days where I AM HAPPY FOR NO REASON!!!!!!!!!!!!! This is HUGE for me!! I have not felt like this in maybe ever. I have been happy before but there is always a reason why I am happy. I never wake up and am just like “I’m happy with life”.

BUT! I have had a couple days last week where I have woken up and just BEEN HAPPY! I remember thinking “is this what normal people feel like all the time? is this what my husband feels like?” It is AWESOME! You are just HAPPY for NO REASON WHATSOEVER! I was just happy that I was alive and I have an amazing husband and sweet fur-babies, and a business.

Honestly, if you’ve never suffered with depression then this whole post may make no sense to you and that’s okay. I can’t really explain it very well to people who don’t live with depression.

Anyway, I think the key may be exercise! “Exercise gives you endorphins, endorphins make you happy and happy people just don’t kill their husbands” (Legally Blonde).

I’m going to keep at my exercising and keep you updated! Exercise may not be “the cure” for everyone but if it helps me be happy then I’ll keep going!

xoxo

nikki

Posted in Adoption

A Year Ago

This past weekend was a little hard. A year ago THIS weekend we were meeting the boys for the first time.

I remember:

Seeing them in person for the very first time. It was raining and we followed the social worker to their school. She went in and brought them out and I remember thinking “oh they’re so small and so cute”.

Having lunch with them and all the caseworkers. Q was so shy and D had so many questions. I picked at my lunch and hubs couldn’t even eat anything.

Picking them up from their foster home and them hugging us. Taking them to the park and just playing. Taking them back to their hotel room and them curling up next to me.

How quickly they called us “Mom and Dad”. I remember being so excited the first time D said “Where’s Dad?” and realizing that was hubs.

Leaving them at school and Q saying “I can’t wait to tell my friends I got new parents.”

 

A year ago, I had no idea everything we would go through. I had no idea that D would run away from us or that he wouldn’t want to live with us. We bonded so quickly that I didn’t think things would go so terribly wrong.

Honestly, I’m not sure why I’m sad. I know we made the right choice. I am happy with life as it is right now. I guess looking back at how happy we were makes me a little sad. I know that I may never have children. They were our chance at children and it didn’t work out. That just makes me a little sad.

xoxo

nikki

Posted in Adoption

A Year Ago

I honestly cannot believe that a year ago we were just finding out that we were chosen as adoptive parents to two boys. And now here we are, a year later, just the two of us (and our two furbabies).

I don’t need to say this but this whole adoption process went nothing like how I expected it. If you’d told me a year ago that D was going to be a nightmare and we were going to have to disrupt, I would have said no way. I would have said there was NOTHING they could do to make me send them back. I would have said that I was going to put my whole heart and soul into making this adoption work.

The “funny” thing is that I did. I poured my whole heart and soul into the boys. I went to therapy to try to help them. I spent hours crying to my husband and on the phone crying to my mom trying to figure out what I was doing wrong. Nothing. There was nothing I did wrong. There was nothing I could do. Love is just not enough. Love cannot fix trauma. Love could not give D what he wanted more than anything, to move back to his birth state.

It just wasn’t meant to be and that’s a hard pill to swallow. Going through the adoption training they tell you it’s going to be hard but no one can tell you HOW HARD it really is. We tried and tried and tried and tried and tried and tried. We didn’t send him back the first time he ran away or the second or the third. We kept trying. We kept trying to make him plant roots and you just can’t do that. You can’t force someone to be happy or stay somewhere they don’t want to.

What if we had adopted from our own state? I’ve asked myself this question before. Honestly, I don’t know the answer. What if we had only adopted one child? There are questions, things we could have done differently before being chosen for those boys. There are decisions we made that if we’d made them differently we never would have been chosen. We actually did inquire about a child in our home state and we never heard back about him. What if we had heard back? What if we had adopted from our state? What if we had only adopted one child? What if we had adopted a girl? The questions could go on and on. In my heart, I know the boys were supposed to be here those few months. They were part of our story. They were a chapter in our book. If not, God would have led us in a different direction but He didn’t. He led us in this direction.

All I do know is that we are done with adoption. I can’t emotionally go through it again. I know, I know, “it’s not about you” “these kids need homes”. That’s fine if that’s how you feel. You weren’t in my shoes. You don’t understand. No one can truly understand how we feel. No one else was here. No one else took the abuse from D. I know how much I can and cannot take. I know in my heart that I cannot go through the adoption process again.

God KNOWS what He’s doing, guys. All we have to do is have faith in Him. He will lead us in the direction we need to go.

xoxo

nikki

Posted in Uncategorized

Off My Chest

I just really need to get this off my chest.

My parents divorced when I was ten. Since then I have had an up & down relationship with my father. I had just about given up on him when I got married. My husband gently pushed me to try again and I did. For the past 7 years, our relationship has been fairly good. Up until this year.

I’m very hurt and I was trying to wait to write this until the hurt had passed some but I feel like I’ll feel better if I just let it out.

The boys came to us in May. My mother and step-dad came out two weeks later to visit. In the three months we had the boys, they visited us 4 times. They live 8 hours away. We also tried to FaceTime once a week or every other week. They wanted to be involved.

My biological father sent us one package of books and that was it. He lives about 10 hours away. He never reached out to FaceTime with the boys, never called, didn’t come visit. He didn’t even bother to call me to see how I was doing.

On both Fathers Day and his birthday (which are about a month apart), I called and texted him. I got no reply back. He did not bother to call or text my husband to wish him a happy Fathers Day. He finally texted on the 4th of July and I asked him did he receive my calls and texts. He responded “Yes.”

My birthday is August 1st. By that time, I was having a really hard time dealing with D and so I was already on edge emotionally. My biological father did not call or text me that morning. One of my brothers was there with me and told me that our father had called him the day before. When my other brother called to wish me happy birthday I asked him had he heard from our dad and he said our dad had called him the day before. I had received no calls or any other kind of communication from him. I finally received a text message from him at 10 o’clock that night. It just said “Happy Birthday”.

He finally reached out by text in Sept. asking if there was a good time to chat. (My husband and I both feel that he only reached out because I had blocked him from all my social media). He called the next Sunday (this was a week AFTER the boys had left) and I told him the boys were gone and went into that story. I told him that I was upset at him for not calling on my birthday and he said he was at a conference and forgot although that was no excuse. I told him that no, that’s  not an excuse and I’m hurt. He apologized and said he would call and check on me in the next few weeks.

I heard nothing from him until I saw him at my brother’s wedding in November. No phone calls, no texts, no emails, nothing. Even at the wedding, he didn’t ask how I was doing. (Sidenote: a relative who I have not spoken to in over 10 years but we are friends on Facebook pulled me aside to tell me how sorry he was that it didn’t work out with the boys and that my husband and I did an amazing thing and he checked to make sure I was ok. That really put into perspective the fact that my biological father did not check on me).

Now we’re at Christmastime. I knew our father was  going to want to come out because my brother and sister-in-law were coming out. One week before Christmas he texted wanting Christmas plans. I told him to work it out with them because I didn’t care (in nicer words than that). He ended up coming to my house and picking up my brother and sister-in-law and spending the day with them. They came back later that evening to open Christmas gifts.

This is where it gets interesting. Originally, I did not want to get my biological father anything for Christmas. I am angry and upset and didn’t feel that he deserved anything. My husband helped me pick out some ties and even a tie holder for when he travels. I actually did put thought into the gift because I know he wears ties for his job and he also travels.

Here’s what he gave me:

adelesimon

Yes, it is a CHILDREN’S BOOK. For the children that I DO NOT HAVE. When I opened it, it took everything inside me not to throw the book down and run out of the room. It is the MOST HURTFUL gift I’ve ever been given. There was no thought put into it. He didn’t even think about the fact that it just reminded me that I had no children and that I failed at having children.

Meanwhile, while I was opening the most hurtful gift ever, my brothers and sister-in-law were opening gift after gift of things that they would actually enjoy, things they were interested in. I had one gift. They each had four or five.

Honestly, up until the moment I opened that gift I had hope. Stupid, stupid hope. Hope that my biological father would step up and apologize and try to fix our relationship. Hope that he would make up for forgetting my birthday.  Hope that he would apologize for not calling me or checking up on me.

Honestly, I hate that I put myself back in this situation. I feel like I’m ten years old again, staring out that window, telling myself “he’ll come back, he loves us, he doesn’t want us to go, he’ll fight for us, he’ll come back”. For years after the divorce, I cried after talking on the phone to him. I used to say to my mom “why doesn’t he say i miss you? why doesn’t he say i love you? why doesn’t he come visit?” I couldn’t understand why my own father didn’t want me.

And here I sit feeling rejected again. The only difference is now I’m 29. 19 years later and I still don’t understand why my biological father doesn’t want me. And it’s even harder now because I know he keeps in touch with my brothers. It’s just me he doesn’t want. He even reached out to his ex-step-daughter after he divorced her mom. He wanted a relationship with her but he doesn’t want one with me.

At this point, I just have to accept the truth. He’s hurt me bad twice and I won’t let it happen a third time. I’m not willing to.

I guess I feel a little better putting this out there. It’s not weighing so heavy on my chest. I’m sure I’ll blog about it some more at some point but at least the story is out there.

thanks for reading

xoxo

nikki