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Mommy Jenna

The Turbulence of Mom

If I was to write everything that happened in my life, well, I’d have to take it to another website and I’d have alot more to say. These posts are not your happy go lucky posts-I am beginning some life confessions in hopes that someone somewhere can step out and have their own voice heard.

I’ve never had the normal relationship with my mom. Since I was little, things were always turbulent. Until I was about ten, we lived with my Grandparents. I grew up “Grandpa’s Little Girl”.

But when my mom was sad, I was the one “It’s Ok Mommy” “You are beautiful Mommy” I was a child comforting my Mom. If she disagreed with something my Grandfather said, she was too quiet to say something. So, I’d be the one to speak up. I remember once saying “Don’t you talk to my Mommy like that.” I was freaking young but I remember it. I was taking care of my Mom’s emotional needs. She went to college, then straight into an overnight job. When I was waking up for school, she was going to bed. When I was home from school, she was leaving.

I listened to my Mom cry. I listened to her call herself ugly. It was my job to parent her…

When I was 10, things started to build up. I had been teased at school since the beginning for only having a Mommy. I was teased about the way I looked. I was born missing 6 permanent teeth, two being right in front. Fluoride damaged my teeth instead of strengthening them.  Kids are horribly cruel and I couldn’t do anything about that until I was older-and into surgery we went. I held lots of emotions in because I didn’t know how to express emotions. It was ignore it and move on. “Bad things” didn’t get talked about. My childhood had “bad things” but no one wanted me to talk. My mouth was zipped. I was ten years old and didn’t want to live anymore. I was mad at the world. I didn’t want to go to school. And off I went into the juvenile system.

From hospital to shelter to group homes and foster care, the next 8 years of life-I was bounced around. I was in places with drug addicts, people involved in violent acts. I was molded into this “System” of giving the right answer or admitting to things you really didn’t do just to show you were making improvements. Now don’t get me wrong, I was no angel as I began to grow up. I didn’t know how to cope with the typical things a teenager does. I didn’t have rules. At the time, I didn’t want to listen to my Grandpa-the person I truly looked up to. I just didn’t care. I wanted someone to care for me.

Mom got married. She had my two little brothers. My step-dad took over the role of my Grandpa for Mom. Without going in to details, I remember a conversation that was picking him over me. I was losing my Mother. He was more important than me. Here I was being taught to explain that I was “manipulative, aggressive, truant from school, relationship problems with my parents, attention deficit, depression” I learned the labels I was supposed to see myself as. I was supposed to see I was the bad kid. In all reality, I was watching my Mother be manipulated by step-father. He won. I lost.

I went into foster care. I had a “new family” with rules and plans. I tried to get involved in church and the youth group. For once, I started to feel like a person. I got to have a job. My Senior year was my first and last year at the school I graduated from. No one thought I could do it…instead, I moved out right at my 18th birthday as I aged out of the foster care system and I graduated from high school with a 3.16 GPA. I proved them wrong.

My Mom apologized to me via text message. She said she was sorry I didn’t have a good childhood and how proud she was of me. It’s the first time, I actually felt ACKNOWLEDGED. Unfortunately, that was the only time. Little Girl Alone Sad.

When I found out I was pregnant with Kelsie at 19, I was scared out of my mind. I called my foster mom in tears. I couldn’t call my Mother. I was in no way going to turn to her. I didn’t know what I was going to do. How was I, ME, going to be a parent. But Patti told me, “God has a reason for this Jenna. You are going to be an amazing Mother and this baby has a purpose.WITH YOU.”

My Mom? “You can not have this baby. You are too young. You are too immature. All you do is party.” I didn’t want to be my Mom.

I still feel pushed on the back burner. Maybe it’s the fact she really didn’t have to be my Mother. Other people took care of me. I was other’s responsibility to deal with. I knew I was the kid she didn’t want.

When I talk to my Mom today, I still can’t complain about anything going on. It’s “something I brought on myself” or she’s got worse issues to deal with. I’m still the scapegoat. I see other family members congratulated on their well wishes. Concern for simple things they might be going through.

I’m just the bad child. I’m the outsider. I’LL NEVER BE GOOD ENOUGH.

 

17 comments

  1. I told you this earlier, but will say it here.

    #1) I am very proud of you for writing this

    BUT

    #2) I am even more proud of you for publishing this.

    I was not a foster child, but to be honest, as a child, growing up, I wised I was. I had a pretty shitty & abusive childhood. I tried to be who I wanted, but it was never good enough. Here I am, at 33 year old, and still and trying to please my mother. While I love her, no one else in my family will tolerate her. She is remarried, dad is remarried and very happy. I wish my step mother was my mother. Yes, I love my mother, but to be honest, I feel, at times, that I have to love her – because no one else in my family ‘can’ tolerate her. I was abused. I was hurt. On my wedding day, I was put down for my weight (she said said I was overweight) even though I had basically starved myself and was medically UNDER weight).

    Long story short.. I know, I went way way off topic, but you need to be who YOU are. As I said, I am PROUD of you for writing this post. You NEED to write it, whether it be in a notebook, locked journal or on a website for all to know who you are – I am proud of you – of who you are – of who you WERE and most of all – who you have become.

    After I left home, I was married, had a baby, marriage didn’t work out, was divorced at 19, in an abusive relationship, then was on my own, then remarried to someone who had no idea what ‘abuse’ was. I was used to fights. I was used to arguing. I was used to the abuse. He was not. It has taken 6 year for me to trust ‘love’ again.

    We all need friends & ‘family’ in our lives, but what happens when the friends in our lives are more family that our actual family is? Who cares? You have people that love you. You have done so much in your life, for your girls and YES for yourself. You NEED to be proud. You better damn well get that head up and see what you have created…. strength. That is the most powerful gift of all.

    I am proud of you.

  2. Jenna, I know we don’t know each other past the board and blog but I wanted to say that you are a VERY strong and brave person for putting your raw emotions out here like you have.

    One thing that I have learned in the past 5 years is you can’t fully rely on anyone but yourself. You have two BEAUTIFUL little girls that I’m sure think you are the best invention next to Elmo and Dora! And I also have to say, you yourself are gorgeous and incredibly strong.

    Keep that chin up love!
    ~Leslie~

  3. Jenna…You are good enough. Never feel that you aren’t. You are amazing!!

    Keep you chin up and shine bright. I’m very proud of you for who you are!

  4. You KNOW that I’m here for you. And fortunately, i didn’t have a shitty childhood, but, I AM having a shitty adulthood which you know about. I love my family but hate that my parents are missing out because they’re stubborn.

    I love you with all my heart. I know how hard it was for you to publish that. I seriously think that you’re stuck with me. 😉 xoxo

  5. Jenna you’re amazing and just by publishing this shows what a strong woman you truly are. I had my share of a shitty mother and a shitty “father” but I was lucky to have some great grandparents and my step-father to pick up what they screwed up. ((hugs))

    Brandy
    (there was more I wanted to say but it wasn’t coming out right)

  6. Jenna, you ARE good enough. I grew up much in the same way you did. I wasn’t in the foster care system, but everything in my mother’s life that’s bad has ALWAYS been my fault. It was my fault she got pregnant at 17. It was my fault she married my dad then divorced him when I was 7 mos old. It was my fault my stepfather hit her. She said she stayed because of me. Meanwhile, I was pawned off on any family friend or relative that would take care of me so she could do what she wanted to without responsibility. After my grandparents died, I cut ties with my mother, and even though I had a lot of shit to work through, my life has been MUCH better for it. You don’t need that negative voice in your head all the time. Surround yourself with the positive.

  7. Well, I’m glad your foster mom had faith in you and your abilities.
    I’m glad you had her to call when you needed.
    Your biological mom sounds just like that – the biological being of your existence, but not the real guiding force of your existence, to me from what I’ve read here it was first and foremost yourself, and then secondly your foster family that you called when you needed to hear supportive
    words.
    I think you have a lot to be proud of, first you didn’t kill yourself at ten. Some children do. Second you survived the juvenile system, group homes, and foster care. That is alot. I know, I had a best friend from grade school through tenth grade that went through all of that. She did not fare as well as you did in the end.
    I think it’s great you shared this, in case there is one child who may be surfing the web that may happen upon this and need it. I think it’s also nice you shared this, because it gives people understanding of others situations and helps them to feel better and more hopeful about their own
    situations they may be handling.
    It might also help some mothers who may not comment, but read your blog to wake up and understand that they need to step up and shelter and take care of their children, and not the other way around.
    You’re amazing.

  8. Your foster mom is right God has a reason for this and though none of his reasons make sense to us we have to trust in him. I have wonderful parents but had an emotionally stressed childhood, my husband on the other hand had a much more….”different” childhood than mine and his parents are totally missing out on our childrens lives. Yet as much as I disagree with his raising and as much as it agrivates the heck out of me to see him struggle with certain things, I Thank God for his disfunctional family because if it weren’t for them he would not be who he is today. He is proving everyone wrong by succeeding in every area they said he wouldn’t and it looks to me like you are doing much of the same.
    I have only just begun to read your posts but from what I can see you are worth alot to alot of people near and far!
    God Bless!

  9. ((big Hugs))) Jenna !!

    You are a brave ‘old’ soul to tell your story. I use the term old, as one as lived longer than their real age in ‘life circumstance’ (if that makes sense to you) I know sharing your story will help others.
    I had a crappy childhood too..never in the “system” but was in the reversal role like you ( child taking care of mother) starting around age just past 5).
    I was always the rescuer up until almost the very end (within say 3 months of the passing of her life)… and it took it’s toll on me, and almost my marriage & children’s childhood. That we (you & I) survived should be a testament to our self survival instincts… not everyone will agree. but we know, inside we have to believe & know!

    stay strong, safe & stay Jenna!
    Faythe

  10. Jenna **hugs** You’ve wrote a GREAT post. I know we’ve talked a few times but I know how you feel, that’s how I feel from my mother and why I haven’t talked to her in almost 2 years. I agree with Tanya, for what it’s worth, I am proud of you for having the courage to write and publish this, I know it’s not easy. I know how you feel about your grandpa as well cause that’s how my grandma was for me …. and a big part of why I feel so lost since she passed away 2 years ago. ((hugs))

  11. For me, I felt similar to this for years. What helped me was to find my identity in Christ. I had heard that saying from other people before but didn’t understand it. When I realized it just means to see yourself the way God sees you, it has changed my life. Remember that God doesn’t see you this way and doesn’t want to see you the way you have displayed in these pictures. He doesn’t want you hurting. He wants you living a life filled with joy and reflects back on what he has given you.

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