"Rock, Hard Place" Road Sign with dramatic clouds and sky.

Warning: This is a very long entry.

Hello. Today I thought maybe I’d share my story. When I say story, I don’t mean the whole story that makes up WHO I AM, but rather the story of my situation…or my life in the past 5 years; just so you can get somewhat of an understanding. I may not share everything, but bits and pieces. As some of you may know, I am raising 2 little girls. A 7 year old (we’ll call her Little M) and an 11 year old (Little J). I have never given birth to a child myself, I did however raise my ex fiancé’s daughter for 3 years and now Little J and Little M. They are my nieces. My little sis (as in 6 years younger, but still 28 years old) has struggled since she was 18 with drug addiction (I’ll write an entry on this later). She ended up losing custody of her daughters Little J and Little M 5 years ago (at the time Lil M was only 2 and Lil J was only 6). My mother (their nana) ended up getting custody of them and I moved back home to help her. It started out as me just being that extra little help for the first year, but that same year my mother was diagnosed with a liver disease and her health started declining. That’s when I stepped in and became more of a parent than a helper. So for the last 4 years I’ve been taking the kids to school, picking them up, helping with homework, giving baths, taking them to extra curricular activities, dinner, housework, and anything else an actual parent does. I went from Aunt, to helper, and then stepped into the role of parent. I’m not gonna lie, the first 2 years were rough for me. I didn’t have my own kids and I didn’t want to raise someone else’s kids (unless it was someone I was in a relationship with) but especially not for someone who was out living life irresponsibly and just left her kids behind. Mostly because it was a situation I was thrust into instead of a situation I chose (as aforementioned relationships). I was bitter. I loved the kids, but I did not want to be raising them. I was very resentful for the fact that I could not continue following my dreams, focus on picking up the pieces of my broken heart, or live the life that I wanted anymore. But after a while, the kids started to become my own…and my life. I now have a love for them as if they were my own children. I’d do anything for them and sacrifice anything for them (without pushing the boundaries of SPOILING them anyways). I’m not bitter or resentful about the situation anymore, although I am still a little towards my sister. I love her and always will, she’s my little sister. I don’t fault her or judge her for getting on drugs, honestly it could happen to any one of us. And even though the past 5 years have been hell of her getting clean and then relapsing and being in and out of jail and rehab over and over and over, she has now been clean for almost 6 months and living responsibly for the first time EVER. But, her lack of trying to make it up to the kids still makes me harbor bitterness towards her. Anyways, like I said, that’s all for another day, but back to not being bitter about raising the kids anymore. The hardest part now about my situation is not the children at all, they are MY kids, but trying to raise them with my mom is the hardest part. I love my mom so much and we are very close, but first of all living with your parent when you’re an adult is hard enough…but throw in raising kids together especially when you have two totally different parenting styles, it’s SUPER FRUSTRATING. She’s the “nice one” who lets them get away with murder. Perhaps because she is the nana and perhaps part feeling like she has to make up for the emotional hell they’ve been through with their parents…which I get. But, there still has to be structure, rules, and boundaries. That’s where I come in, I’m a lot more strict on the girls. I’m very firm with them on the important things, but I also throw in a good balance of fun and playfulness. Me and my mom fight a lot because of our differences in parenting styles. Then to top it all off, with her illness and mental stress, she can’t handle when I’m not here to help her (which I do partially understand) but if I go away for a weekend on a short trip even if just for one night, she gets really stressed and I often get the guilt trip. I still go, because I have to..I need this time to be me again and feel normal, but it’s always a stressor too because I know how hard it’s going to be for my mom. I haven’t had a full time job in years, which is fine, I don’t mind at all for multiple reasons being a stay at home mom (along with little side jobs like photography etc), but if I even think of getting a part time job, she gets stressed out and I struggle with money. And lastly, my dating life has been non-existent. I have had one actual long term relationship in the past 5 years. It barely lasted a year. It’s hard to have a relationship while I live with my mom and am raising kids with her. I’m very emotionally independent and have never been one of those girls who can’t be alone or has to be in a relationship to feel whole, but after this long…it’d be nice to have a significant other. If I ever met the right person one of two things would happen: Either they would be completely okay with it because they LOVE ME and we would work it out or I would go build a life with them as hard as leaving my family would be. So…the point of this journal is not for anyone to feel sorry for me or to have any judge mental feelings at all about anyone that I have mentioned in this entry, but for you to understand. To understand those tweets where I might say I feel like running away or I need my own life and my own freedom. It’s not really because of the kids, because if I end up raising them forever, I’m totally cool with that…and it’s not totally because of my mom. It’s just the situation as a whole, raising my nieces with my mom who depends on me. I feel trapped a lot of the time. I try to make the best of it and I love Lil J and Lil M to pieces, but it sure would be nice sometimes to just be able to fulfill my dream of becoming a writer or to just get away when I need to. It’s not totally that I can’t, sometimes I think about it, but I sure would miss the kids and I worry about what would happen to my mom and the kids in my absence. It’s completely a Catch 22 and I don’t know which way to run. Unless an amazing unpassable opportunity lands in my lap, I’ll probably just stay for now. I don’t know if my sister will ever get custody back, but I do however count my blessings everyday that I get to be such an important part of these kid’s lives and in giving them some normalcy as well as being fortunate to still have my mom alive since I lost my dad the day after my 22nd birthday. I’m working on editing my book I wrote *slowly but surely* and maybe eventually, those dreams will come true. I’m sorry this was such a long entry, don’t anticipate the rest of them being this long, I just really felt like I needed to explain the gist of the story. Thanks for listening…if you’ve made it this far, you’re an awesome listener with a great attention span. 😉 Until next time… -K

2 thoughts on “Warning: This is a very long entry.”

  1. You are literally amazing. I havnt come across such a good honest heart in a long long time. Those kids probably look at you and see their whole world, what you’re doing for them is a priceless act of kindness and love x

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