I am a 38-year-old married woman, a wife of 10 years, and a mother to a 3.5-year-old daughter and a 1-year old son. My mother is African American and my father is/was Caucasian. I was born in the late 70’s where it was still taboo for interracial relationships to exist. My family on my father’s side did not meet or knew I existed until I was a year old. This was because my grandfather apparently was racist and my father did not want to deal with that. When my younger sister was born, my dad told his family that he was a daddy again as they didn’t know my mother had been pregnant. My sister and I were born out of wedlock and my parents decided the right thing to do was get married. I was 4 when they got married and 6 when they were divorced. My mother didn’t bother to show to the divorce hearing and my dad was granted automatic custody of my sister and myself.
My dad was now a single father of 2 girls. He loved being a dad and adored us…and we adored him. We thought he was the greatest thing ever! He did things for us, took us places and experienced things to show his love and dedication, and we loved every moment of it. He couldn’t afford to buy us too much as finances were tight, but he did what he could. My family on my dad’s side helped a lot with being there and show us love. We definitely felt love like any child should feel. However, something still felt missing.
My best friend growing up also had a family that was loving and treated me like their own daughter. I felt so welcomed and was very thankful for that. Her mom felt like she was my mom. But it still was not the same.
I never have had a mom’s love and affection. My mom was so caught up in her drug life, that she didn’t care if she was part of her own children’s life (she had 4 total). I still to this day suffer because of that abandonment feeling. I often would wonder why every other kid had a close relationship with their mom, but not me. I wondered if I was unlovable in the sight of my mom’s eyes. Why did she not want to be in my life? And the times she did decide to visit, there was broken promises. For example, she promised to take my sister and I to Enchanted Village. She was late picking us up, but he ended up there in the parking lot. She spent who knows how long dealing with one of her “boyfriends” that by the time that was resolved, Enchanted Village was closing and we couldn’t even go inside. That’s heartbreaking to a kid who is excited to go there.
Other memories I have of her is when we’re with her we would go to random people’s houses. She said they were her “friends”. However, once we got there she would make my sister and I sit in a random bedroom and not allowed to come out. We didn’t understand why. I now know it was so she could get high with them and not let us see her. But I have witnessed her smoking crack. I came out of the room to use the bathroom and saw her smoking from a pipe. At the time I didn’t understand what it was and brushed it off. I know now what was going on.
I have blocked out most of the memories I have of her because it hurts so bad. Most of my thoughts and feelings about my mom is mainly that she didn’t care about us and she didn’t love us. That’s why she didn’t try harder to be in our lives.
When I was 15, my dad succumbed to his diabetes and passed away at age 39. Did my mom step up and try to get custody of my sister and I? Of course not! We went to live with my grandma (my father’s mother). I remember feeling sad because my mom still didn’t want me.
As an adult, as a mother I’m still deeply affected by it! How can anyone in any situation turn their back on their child? I love my children with every ounce of my being. I can’t imagine not always being there for them. They deserve their mommy in their lives. They grew and lived inside of me for 10 months, I bonded with them from the moment they were out of my womb. They know a mommy’s love like no other love! And how one cannot want to be there is beyond something I cannot comprehend. My mother walked away from 4 kids total…that baffles my mind. Yes, I’m thankful I’m alive, but my mother had no business having children if she was not going to be there.
It is my goal to not have my children question whether or not I love them. I don’t want them to feel the pain of abandonment, like I had to experience. No child should be without their mothers…and fathers too since it’s a different type of love and life experience. But a mother’s love is crucial! I’m still to this day going through my emotions and dealing with the pain. I know I’m on a journey of healing and have lots of counseling to still go through. All I wanted growing up was my mommy to love me and be there for me. I just want to be able to call her and tell her about my day and ask advice from! And I know my children will have that, and that gives me peace. I’m breaking the cycle! 1st generation Christian, and a full-time dedication mother!
Your story sounds quite familiar. It hurts badly to have family split, number 1. But then to suffer abandonment hurts beyond description. I was born in ’70 – I also was raised by my father and grew up without a mother’s love. You say you are there for your children and loving them – so there is no doubt in their minds of this – this should be a good thing. You also wrote that you are a first generation Christian I believe. Wow – you sound so much as I did. Not identical, but similar. Didn’t Christ say He laid down His life for us while we were yet sinners? Has He not forgiven us, when we deserved eternal separation, even punishment, in that He is Holy…and all have sinned and fall short of the glory (weight) of God? Didn’t He say that our hatred, is as murder compared to His ways? The Lord’s prayer…”forgive us our sins/debts and we forgive those who sin against us/our debtors”. In that He is holy and without sin, didn’t we owe a debt we couldn’t pay? Yes, there is much to work through. But when we see it in His light – it takes on a whole different perspective. You must forgive your mother. Do you want your children to judge you some day? Trust me, if you live for Christ – it will be possible. If you love them completely, but He is your God – it is possible. Would you rather your mother have aborted? Really? You really would rather not have been born, when it is God who chooses to give man his spirit and life? My mother has told me, that if she knew I would genetically inherit the severe spinal problems I did, she wouldn’t have had me (like a favor). Really? No thanks! I’m rather fond of living. I really am glad God gave me life. And I’ve been through unbelieeeevable amounts, far beyond the abandonment and no shows of childhood, in the many years since. Is the resentment and hurt (or hatred?) you feel for your mother, that your writing expressed, what your children have heard?? Careful, they could become self-righteous. You need to fall at the foot of the cross, realizing you do not deserve God’s mercy. If you do, you will realize that is exactly where your children will need to be someday. Yes – you want them to know, drugs are bad! bad news – destroying the soul, mind and will of the user – everybody hurts. But, go by reason, the mind of Christ, that nice little rudder for the boat, not feelings as a springboard. He can handle the rest. Realize where you stand / and stood, before God…forgive your Mom…grieve your loses. Ask Him for wisdom. Hugs ….
You are a beautiful person inside and out! God bless you!!
Oh, sweet girl, what a loss for your mother. She has surely missed out on a lifetime of love and happiness. She has robbed herself of the joys of being a grandmother. She pays for her choices daily, know that. She surely lives her life in turmoil and regret. Try not to waste precious time or energy on thoughts of what could have or should have been. It’s taken me years to learn how to do that and I wish I’d learned sooner because I would have been happier sooner.
I’m so very sorry you lost your father at 15. He obviously raised an incredible woman.
The gifts we receive from our tumultuous lives is our strength, resilience, and a powerful intuition. These qualities are priceless and will be with us forever. Like me, you can likely spot pain in a child’s eyes from across a crowded gymnasium. You are well aware when you’re being fooled or lied to. You know when a situation isn’t quite right or when a person has ill intent. You don’t have to be told these things, it doesn’t have to be pointed out.
Use these gifts to help others when you can, but don’t wear yourself out. Create beautiful memories for your children and future grandchildren and great grandchildren.
I will most certainly include you, my sister in Christ, in my prayers.