Sunday, May 9, 2010

Mother's Day

Although I am truly blessed to be a mother to two great kids I can't help but feel a little blue this Mother's Day.  Growing up I had the best mother in the world.  There were not many kids my own age in my neighborhood and my mother filled in for the lack of kids to play with.  We played games, went to the movies, went shopping.  She was my best friend.  Even after I was old enough to go to school and make friends outside of the neighborhood I shared a special bond with my mother.  Now, many years later I no longer have that bond.  I mourn the loss of my mother but not because she has died.  In fact she is very much alive and lives only a few houses away from me. 

So what caused the separation between me and my mother?  Unfortunately, she became a hoarder of both animals and merchandise and also became (continued to be?) an enabler of my brother's heroin addiction.  In a few short years she took in over 30 cats.  Due to her out of control spending and my brother constantly stealing from her purse, she lost my childhood home to foreclosure and caused the business that she and my father worked so hard to establish go bankrupt.  Slowly but surely her behaviors caused my parents to divorce and drove a wedge between us. Although she was once a tremendous part of my 10 year olds life her sickness has taken her away from him.  She is no longer involved in my children's lives and in fact has only seen my 2 year old a few times.  It is such a tragedy because I know the mother I "USED" to have would have enjoyed every minute of her grandchildren.  I tried to get her to go to therapy.  In fact, we went together twice and then she gave up.  The therapist told me he could not help her because she refused to be honest with him.  I called her private physician who advised me that "my mother had a death wish because she sabotages her health every chance she gets".  Although she is an insulin dependant diabetic she chooses only to eat canned fruit, king sized chocolate bars and loaves of white bread.  Yes,  I said loaves of white bread.  Desperate, I even called Adult Protective Services.  They were no help. I have tried other measures to get her the help that she needs but they have failed.  At this point I have given up.   

So, Mom spent Mother's day with my addict brother.  The brother who sells her pain meds on the street and takes her social security check every month.  Yes, I mourn the loss of my mother but at least I can go to sleep at night with a clear conscience because I know I did everything I personally could do to get her the help she needs.  The mother from my childhood would be proud.


BONNIE K said...

This sounds like OCD, and I have been told that doctors can only help people with OCD if they are willing to put forth the effort, and that doesn't seem to be happening here. It's good that you recognize that there is nothing you can do, because it's up to her. It's all very sad though.

Brooklyn Book Lover said...

Yes Bonnie it is very sad. Not only for me but for my children as well. It is a shame they will not know the wonderful mother that raised me. But, they still see my father even though he lives in another state. He is an amazing person and I am thankful that he gets to see them grow up.

Green Monkey said...

BBL...that was a real honest post, gave me chills. love finding people who right real.

you can't enable, thats for sure. you did all you could. i don't know much about you other than this post, but do you believe in the power of thought?

if so, the only thing I can think of is to surround her with love and positive energy and imagine she is doing well.

after the death of my son. I did a lot of second guessing. know that no matter what, you have done all you can do. love her from a distance, but don't hold onto her pain. its not yours.... (I know you know this, right?)

Brooklyn Book Lover said...

Green Monkey.. I am truly sorry for your loss. I pray that you were surrounded by friends and family during that difficult time. I appreciate you responding to my post, sharing your experiences and giving me some advice.
Yes, I am a true believer in the power of positive thought. My sister-in-law (a wonderful woman) opened my eyes to that process and I am thankful to her. Sometimes though it feels as if my thoughts are not powerful enough and I get a bit discouraged.
And thank you for becoming my first follower! :-)

Alex said...

What a scary thing to think that there is nothing left to do, but I can totally see your point. It's like fighting a losing battle with hoarders. Have you considered submitting the "case" to the people at A&E Hoarders? Maybe it's time for the ultimate wake-up call - national television...?

And thank you for your comment on 13 Years of Clutter!

Brooklyn Book Lover said...

Alex - If I thought it would help her I would definitely contact A&E. Unfortunately, she is in denial and blames her circumstances on everyone but herself. Adult Protective Services does not even return my phone calls these days. It seems as though they let her case fall through the cracks. Again, my thoughts and prayers are with you as you help your mother win the hoarding battle. I will keep checking your blog for news of your success. :-)