My Greatest Fear

Dear Oliver,

I’m scared.  I worry often.  I read about how so many mothers have had to place their children in institutions or they have had to hand over custody to the state because their children are aggressive and try to hurt themselves or those they love.  I read today about how a woman whose son went ballistic in the car on the way to school and ripped two handfuls of her hair out of her head.  How four adults had to escort him into school because he sat in the middle of the drop off lane laughing hysterically.  I think could that be you one day?  He is 11.

Then I read about how another mother had to place her aggressive child into the hands of someone else because she was afraid of him.  He is aggressive towards her and himself.  He is 6.  Will that be you?  Will you lose your sweet demeanor and become so frustrated in your struggles that you lash out and hurt yourself or me?  Oliver I don’t know what I would do if you hit me or hurt me.  I know I would be crushed.  I am not sure what I would do without you.

From what I have read this usually happens at puberty and I am praying that you continue to smile more than cry, laugh more than shout, and keep your laid back go with the flow personality.  I read about mothers who never thought their child would hurt them or themselves.  How their children were just like you.  Pleasant to be around and lovely.  Clever.  Gorgeous souls.  There has only been one time when you hit me out of frustration.  I was holding you on my hip and you were upset about something (what it was exactly has slipped my mind) and you slapped me on my chest.  At first I was angry and I told you that what you did was not ok and that it hurts when you hit people.  My voice was stern and this made you cry harder. Then I became sad and covered the spot where you hit me.  You noticed but instead of responding by hugging me or showing you were sorry as most children would, you just simply stopped the fit and wanted down to go play with a toy.  It’s like you recognized my emotion but was unsure what to do so you did the only thing you knew to do and that was to continue on with our day as usual.

You have done so many new things lately which I will save for a new post but I needed to write to you and ask that if it ever came to the point where you had to leave my care and at that time you read this letter do three things for me:

1.  Go back to the first letter I wrote to you and make your way through each one trying to remember.  Remember what made you smile all the time.  Remember how you loved outdoors and car rides.  Remember how the wind made you smile and giggle.  Try to remember what started making you angry.  Why you became so frustrated and what made you feel like you needed to hurt yourself or me.  Try to remember the trigger and then lets remove it if we can because I no doubt want you to come home.

2.  Think about something that makes you happy and close your eyes and go there.  I will be there waiting for you.  Smiling.

3.  Don’t ever think that I chose this for you.  Know that I tried to help but sometimes we have to step it up and let the experts do their magic.  Your therapist is incredible and she always gave me brilliant ideas and showed me how to discover what will work for you by paying attention.  Know that you are where you are because I LOVE you.  I just pray you will love me back.

 

For now Oliver, you are the sweetest 2 year old.  The saying “terrible twos” doesn’t apply to you.  I always wondered what mothers meant when they said things like “Oh my son was a lovely child.  So easy and a joy to be around” or “My daughter was such a pleasure to raise.  From infant to adult she was just a wonderful girl”.  See, your brother and sister were not so easy.  Your brother was busy.  He was always doing things like painting the right side of my car yellow while I took a shower (he was 3), leaving the house with a friend at 5am to eat cheese on a slide across the street only to say that he left a note which was just scribble (he was 3), and when he was 7 or so he drove his pet frog Fred around the house in your sisters Barbie car leading to an untimely death.   I thought he was tough to raise until I had your sister…  She did things like write her name in sharpie on a cooling cake to claim it as all hers (she was 5), she set the tree in front of our house on fire after finding a lighter and she put it out with a gallon of milk (she was 5), and she decided that our living room didn’t have enough pictures on the walls so she glued a picture she drew onto the wall complete with a colorful pom pom frame (she was 5).  Looks like age 3 and 5 are when I should be worried! 🙂  Those are just a small list of the things your brother and sister have done. They are amazing kids and they adore you. I am very lucky to have such interesting kids. All different and unique. I love to watch you all grow into your own. I am very proud.

So for now we will enjoy your precious and easy-going personality.  I will try not to worry until there is something to worry about.  I love you peanut and my heart hurts for the mothers who were blindsided and are struggling with readjusting.  Oliver I love you no matter who you become and I will continue to love you even if I don’t feel you love me back at times because that is what momma’s do.  It’s all we know how to do.  You matter to me.  You are my world and I can only pray that I am yours.  Always.

 

Love you peanut,

Mommy

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