Requiem for My Self Reliance

If  there was a song dedicated the end of myself reliance, to its being lit on a funeral pyre as it floated out to sea, it would  start with a low whispered sticato of no no no no no no. The  crescendo would lift into a loud,  long high pitched wail and fade eventually into soft gutteral sobs of acceptance. 

I have always been a pull yourself up by your bootstraps person. Not so much out of choice but of necessity.  I would encourage anyone who listened to get the help they needed while silently, slowly bleeding to death. All of that started to change when we first became foster parents. Being an island just wasn't an option.  Too many people routinely in and out of our lives to do it on my own. 

The day, however that I finally broke, that my stubborn will and stubborn heart finally shattered was the day I found out my worst fears had been made real.  My worst case scenario was one of my children being molested. Not only had that happened but the perpetrator was a son I dearly love. My brain fractured as I tried to work out the dichotomy of "son I love " and " predator I wish dead"

These are the moments that make or break people. The moments where there are no understandable words, just a tumult of unanswerable questions and sobs. "Why? Why? Oh God why?" Followed by what feels like an eternity of tears. Tears when you least expect. It was like a death had happened but without the finality, without the closure. 

Two years down the road, two years into my new mental health routines I can see light again. I can laugh again. Breathing,  functioning,  living  doesn't feel as excruciating.  But there is still grief. What does not remain, not an inkling, is a feeling that I need to do this alone. That I need to grieve, cry, and rage alone. 

I do not, would not wish this tragedy on anyone. However I can see glimpses of how it will be ok. How my girls are thriving.  How my oldest is safe from himself and getting the help he needs. 

I will never be ok. Our family will never forget the collective pain and shame and guilt. But despite everything, despite wanting to scream in God's face and questioning his existence,  somehow I know in my soul He is good. He will work all things to His glory. I don't know how. I feel angry thinking He could allow things to happen that happened.  I don't have answers, just more questions.  And a sense of peace surpassing understanding,  that yes, this life, these situations are tragic, and sinful, and awful. But somehow we will be ok. 


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