If Things Were Different…

In a perfect world, on this day I would call you and wish you a wonderful day, tell you I miss you and love you (and be told you miss me and love me too). We would chat about how quickly Nolan is growing, how smart he is and how his MHE is doing. We’d talk about the pregnancy, and Dalya’s birth. I’d tell you about the move, and other little details in my life. You would share bits of yours, of course, but you wouldn’t rant for hours about how my father is the scum of the earth because he left you after 31 years of marriage. But this isn’t a perfect world, and our relationship isn’t like that. I won’t be calling you today because you don’t want to hear from any of us, you clearly don’t want to be a part of our lives and you don’t want us to be a part of yours.

This relationship shouldn’t be hard. It shouldn’t be poisonous. It shouldn’t be confusing. I shouldn’t be so conflicted when I think of you. I should know, without a doubt, that you love us and you care about us. But I don’t know that, because the choices you’ve made over the past year suggest otherwise.

It’s really hard for me to write about all of this, partly because there’s just so much that I haven’t written about, that I don’t know where to begin. I’ve written a few things, sure, and others I’ve written and then quickly deleted because my anger was too raw, or I was scared it would upset someone else. Who knows, maybe this post will meet the same fate (if I even publish it that is).

Today is your birthday. You’re probably with those “friends” of yours, drinking a coffee from Tim Hortons and posting to your Facebook about how your own daughters haven’t even called you and how we don’t care about your suffering and pain. But we do, we always have, we’re just upset because YOU don’t seem to care about OUR suffering and pain – mostly all of which you’ve caused. I bet you won’t post about how you told Kate that we were “never to darken your door again”, you won’t tell all of your Facebook friends that you chose to “live your life” by cutting your own kids and grandkids out of it. You won’t tell them about all the hurt you’ve caused, the turmoil. You won’t confess that our relationship is non existent because you chose to live in such a dark, resentful place and even worse, you chose to pour your acid darkness into our lives instead of just being our mother and caring about us. No, you won’t post those things to Facebook because than your friends and your “supporters” would see that you aren’t entirely innocent, you aren’t the victim. Then they’d see that instead of caring about us, you said “it was time to do for you” and tossed us aside, only telling Facebook that you missed us and loved us. We haven’t heard those words since October. Kind of messed up isn’t it? I’m sorry if I’m “cold” sounding, but I know many women who do for them and still are good mothers who would never tell their children to bugger off, so, forgive me for being very angry with you for your actions in regards to us. Frankly, I could care less now about who you choose to spend your time with, so long as you don’t bring them around me or my little family. No, the reason why I’m upset with you is for the things you’ve said and done to us, your girls, and because of how you’re acting. You can’t play the victim card forever: at some point you have to realize that you aren’t entirely innocent. Ā 

At some point, you have to realize that you chose this, but you can’t see that. You can’t see past your own hatred, your own “destroyed life”. You can’t muster the decency to apologize or drop us a line to check in on us or even call.

A lot of peoples’ marriages fall apart, even after 31 years. Yes, those people deserve to mourn the loss of their relationship, but they don’t destroy and hurt their children in the process of learning how to live again. They don’t decide that their children should no longer be included in their “personal growth” and “living of life”.

Any time I’ve sent you angry emails, demanding an explanation, I’ve been met with confusing answers. It’s because “we don’t approve” of the company you keep, or of the fact that you’re trying to do your own thing. Sure, we don’t like the guy you think is your new BFF, but that’s not why we were hurt and upset with you. It’s because you didn’t care about us anymore, it was all about you and how pissed you are at Dad and how we’re “choosing” him over you.

Kate tried to maintain a relationship with you for a while. But every time she tried, you’d go on and on about the “revenge” you were going to seek. I told you I was pregnant, and didn’t hear a whisper from you. No “congrats! That’s awesome!”. Not a word. Shannon didn’t hear from you either, you never called or emailed to check in on her during her pregnancy. You didn’t call her towards the end of it either, and we don’t even know if you know she gave birth. We’re keeping our distance because you have told us to “never darken your door step again” and that “all conversation shall now cease”. That’s a clear indication that you don’t want to hear from us, so why should we call you up and seek out approval or love when clearly, you don’t want to give it? Children should never have to do back flips for approval and love.

I don’t know any mother who would act this way and still love her children, still care. You’re actions scream of how your new life doesn’t fit us in. Our relationship with Dad is as strong as it is because not once did he ever make us feel like we didn’t fit into his new life. He still calls us and sees us regularly. He still helps us if we need it, still tells us he loves us. As your kids, we’re not supposed to “approve” of everything you do – just as parents can’t approve of everything their kids do. You don’t get that though. You’re nearly 60 years old and you don’t get that.

I’m sorry if this sounds harsh, but my anger is raw. It kills me that you cut us out of your life, it kills me that you don’t care. If you did care, you would never let anything come between us and you did. Hell, you forced a huge wedge between us by kicking JoJo out and the millions of other things you’ve done.

So, yeah…I really don’t know where I’m going with all of this. I’m hurt, I’m angry, and no, I won’t be calling you today. You didn’t call Kate on her birthday, or Nolan on his. No emails, no text messages…not a word. You posted a birthday thing for Kate, but you didn’t acknowledge your first born grandson on his special day and that cuts deep. It cuts deep that you think a Facebook we can’t even see is a great means of “communicating” with us, and it cuts me even deeper still that Nolan didn’t even get that. I’ve reached my breaking point, you couldn’t have expected us to forever try and fix what you’ve broken beyond repair, especially when you don’t care about us. I wish you the best, even if I’m angry.

I wonder how you feel today, if you’re regretting anything. I wonder if Mothers Day this weekend will make you come to your senses and start repairing, or at least trying to repair, what you’ve broken and damaged so deeply. I doubt it. You’ve always been stubborn, you’ve never ever admitted you were wrong about anything.

So, yeah.


Edit to add: I’m not sure if this post is going to stay. I want it to, but…this is all just so hard and confusing. I’m in a weird place today. I’ll be trying to keep myself distracted and from falling into the same “what ifs” because things never turn out the way I want them to. I don’t get the reactions I want, because she doesn’t care. I’m also stubborn, especially when I’ve been burnt to a crisp. There is no manual on how to feel or how to behave in this situation.Ā 

I wrote about this today, even though it makes my family uncomfortable, because I need to try and heal in my own way. Writing has always been my therapy. I know a lot of my family doesn’t agree with me sharing so much of my life here, which is why it’s hard for me to keep posts like this up. I don’t want to hurt them. I don’t want to step on toes or make someone worry without reason.Ā 

I’m trying to figure out how to heal from this, how to move forward so that when I think of her it doesn’t make me so angry and hurt so bad. I feel guilty any time I loose my patience with Nolan, because she never had much patience for us and one of my biggest fears is that I will end up like her. I don’t want to be like her. I do know that I will never hurt my family the way she has hurt us, I will never choose anyone above my children, no matter how old they are.


About J.C. Hannigan

25. Mother. Wife. Lover of words. Weaver of stories. My first book, Collide, is available in e-book for Amazon Kindle and Kobo.
This entry was posted in conflicted, confusion, depression, emotional, family, hurt, I don't really know, pain. Bookmark the permalink.

10 Responses to If Things Were Different…

  1. dramaticmama says:

    I think this is worse then actually loosing your mother. Knowing that she is out there, talking about you guys, saying wrong things and not coming clean or saying sorry.

    Jess, you and your sisters are strong woman. I know it would destroy me. šŸ˜¦ C is going through the beginning stages of this with his dad. šŸ˜¦ It breaks me heart to hear about this, since I am now a parent, and I don't understand how a parent (both mother and father) could do this to their child.

    You will not become your mother. In the good ways you will, but you won't leave your children. You are stronger. Wiser. And you are a lover of everyone, mostly everyone.

    Not to try and put unwanted hope into you, but who knows, things might change?

    Huge hugs to you girl! I couldn't do what you do. I couldn't deal with what you do. ā¤

  2. Tamara says:

    awww i'm sorry šŸ˜¦

    i can't even imagine dealing with anything like this

    stay strong šŸ™‚

  3. Karen in Oz says:

    I am so sorry Jess šŸ˜¦ I couldn't even begin to know how I would deal with this.
    *Hugs* You are a strong and caring person.

  4. @Dramatic Mama: I don't understand it either, I really don't. I know some people can be selfish, but this isn't JUST selfishness.

    @Tamara: It's hard, and I'm trying. I'm usually okay – Nolan keeps me really busy, but there are days when it just hits me.

    @Karen in Oz: Thanks Karen, I'm not sure about the strong part most days though lol.

  5. This is very sad :(. Your mother doesn't know how lucky she is. She has a beautiful, intelligent, wonderful daughter and she is missing out on her life.

  6. Jezzymika says:

    Hey darling,
    sorry to hear about all this and hows it is still going on in your life. If I was in your position and wouldn't know how to feel. As you said theres no manual you just have to try and deal with what life gives you.

    You and your sisters are amazing. I hope your mom realizes that before it is too late. But you Ladies are all strong and Amazing. She is missing out on the lives of some amazing people and some adorably amazing kids.

    You are a great mother and I know that no matter what happens you will never do anything similar to Nolan and little Bean. Be proud that even with all this that you are still doing a great job and an incredible mom.

    Many Many hugs! ā¤

  7. @Old School/New School Mom: Thanks love

    @Jezzymika: Thanks so much Jess, it means a lot ā¤ many hugs to you as well!

  8. I'm sorry you have to go through this with your mother. At times like this she should be your number one, go to gal. I hope she comes to her senses and realizes just how much she is going to regret missing all of these milestones.

  9. @Danielle-Marie: Thanks hun, you're right. But I doubt she will come to her senses…if she was going to, she would have already.

  10. Oh Jess. I'm so, so sorry you're hurting so much. I wish I could make it go away. My heart hurts for you. You do not deserve this.

    You are a wonderful mother, though. Don't ever question that. It's normal to lose patience sometimes. No parent is ever patient all the time! You wouldn't be human if you were.

    Nolan and Archer know that you love them. They — especially Nolan — also know when they're pushing your buttons that you still love them.

    I hope that your mom will eventually come to her senses, maybe not anytime soon, but someday at least. She's missing so much, and she has so much to be proud of you for. That is, however, her own choice, and not at all a reflection of YOU. I cannot tell you enough how amazing of a mother and person I think you are.

    Don't be afraid to write out your feelings. I know it's hard because family reads your space — I deal with that all the time — but in the end, it's your space, and they're your feelings. You deserve some sort of outlet. If, however, you need a private space to rant, I'm an email away. I can't make it better but I can promise to listen if you need me: liz@elizabethbarone.net

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