Dear You (You know who you are):
For 12 years I have watched you erratically come in and out of my life in flights of rage and depression. I have listened to your insensitive words about my weight, my hair, my decorative choices, my lack of southern heritage, taking your son away from you, my wedding plan choices, my lack of culinary skills, and coming to my house and "Baby Love" after Trey died all day. I watched as my words and experiences, seemingly bonding moments, were thrown in my face and led to judgment and shared with my parents. I listened to my mom cry at your ugly words written in a letter to her, words I told you in confidence that were never meant for her ears, ESPECIALLY by you. They were MY words to say and I didn't ever want her to hear them.
In horror, I watched how you manhandled my son in the NICU insisting that his tubes be moved for your comfort and squeezing his four pound body with blatant disrespect for his condition, not to mention I let you be the first person to hold him besides his my husband and I as an olive branch in our relationship. I waited with my husband in the hospital for your arrival, the very place we didn't want to be when our son died and you never showed, not even a call to tell us you couldn't come. You performed another no show at Trey's Memorial, claiming I never told you about it when I planned it around YOU. I told you that it would be the last Sunday in April, if you had ANY question, all you had to do was look at a calendar or call the three cell numbers you have for the boys and myself. My hubby needed you BOTH of those days and you chose not to be there for him.
Once again, I heard of your ugly words after his death and your accusations of my health choices while I was pregnant with him. You made assumptions based on what you heard someone else say, and instead of coming to us us, you wrote a nasty email to my parents regarding our lifestyle and hid it from my husband when he explained that the accusations you heard were not true.
I held my husband as he cried at the ugly words you spewed at him, things no one should EVER hear from someone like you and then ignore his birthday while contacting his brother on his.
I read texts from you and heard constantly how my husband spent EVERY holiday with me which is NOT true, I was alone for Trey's first Christmas and just about every other Christmas. Plans are hardly ever made in advance so the boys come up with their own plans, even though you say the plan is the same every year, they don't seem to know the plan. The last time about plans during the holidays were texted to me, you cursed at me and said you never wanted to be contacted by me ever again. Months later, when we found out Lorelei was a girl, I texted you because I thought you deserved to know. When she was born and you didn't think it was important to come meet her in the hospital, I sent a picture to you out of consideration featuring my husband holding her, thinking maybe it would soften your heart.
5 weeks later you STILL had not met our daughter so I texted you and invited you to meet her, invited you back into our lives, the very lives that you had such disdain for. Inviting you back into our lives was not an easy decision or process, but it was necessary for Lorelei, how could I live with myself as a mother not making the effort? My husband was pissed at me but quickly had a change of heart when he saw how sweet LL and you were together, he thanked me after every visit for letting you back in and treating you with such hospitality.
Through out these sporadic periods of tension between us, you have done many wonderful things, though they are overshadowed by the hurt you have caused my family, my husband, and myself. You have helped provide for our daughter, helped us around the house after Trey died, visited us while Trey was at the children's hospital, you've cooked wonderful meals for us, welcomed us into your home, and spent quality time with us.
I too have done MANY MANY MANY things to foster at least a peaceful relationship between you and I, including extending olive branches when you CERTAINLY did not deserve them, giving you chance after chance to redeem yourself, taking care of you in the hospital after your accident, purchasing special sentimental gifts for holidays, taking EVERY precaution to be civil, if not polite to you, brushed off things you said and did that boiled my blood, helping you recover from your back injury, loaning you my dog for company, welcoming you into my home, keping you updated on Lorelei's progress and milestones, providing pictures of both children, and most of all, I have bending over backwards to be respectful to you even though you have never earned my respect.
I spent YEARS trying to get you to love me, then settled for trying to get your to like me. After that, I just tried to respect me and my position in my husband's life. Finally I just resolved to hope that one day your would respect me, now I know that I will never be good enough in your eyes and I don't feel like trying anymore.
You have NEVER respected me as John's partner in life or as the mother of his children. You come into EVERY situation like you're in charge, no matter who you trample over. Our volatile relationship has affected my marriage, driving a wedge between my husband and I. And, even though he won't stand up for me and say that it is not right for you to treat me this way, I still honor your relationship with him and try to be civil if only for make him happy, sacrificing pieces of myself along the way, breaking me down slowly and painfully.
I have been guilty of blowing up at you when I am past my boiling point, THAT I will own. I have also vented about my trials with you, mainly to find out if I am doing the right thing by you. Many people in my life think that I have extended WAY too much in regards to you, but they understand that I do this because it is important to my husband and for our daughter.
My husband cannot come up with ANYTHING I have done in rudeness, he can only recall all of the ways that I have reached out to you. I begged him to tell my offenses toward you so that I could make it right, and he said that he would DEFINITELY confront me if I was offensive in any way, I wish he would stand up to you in my defense the same way.
That brings us to the present, we are once again in dire straights after only a few months of interaction if ONLY because of our daughter. You have waltzed back into our lives and once again tried to dominate over me in my relationship with my daughter AND husband.
You have taken liberties and not considered my protection of my daughter such as wanting to wait a year to give her dairy products. I had a milk allergy when I was a baby, who knows if I passed it on to her, even if I didn't, pediatricians TODAY recommend waiting a year. There is NOTHING wrong with the precaution we are taking with Lorelei, ti might sound silly to you, but I would rather be silly about something then end up with a child with a bad reaction. You change her diapers on our furniture without any protection despite my indication that we have a changing table you can use. In YOUR house you can change her where ever you want, but in our house, we don't have time for the extra hassle to clean our couch if she has an accident, not to mention not protecting our furniture presents a health hazard. You question my worry that my child is cold when you take her outside on blustery days. You took it upon yourself to try to spike our child's hair for her Baptism just because Lilly did it to your kids, that is NOT your place. Parenting is NOT the same as it was when you were raising your children yet I get constantly reminded of how you did things as a parent.
T here are more offenses, most of which I turn a blind eye to as they are not worth broaching, as I have to pick my battles to keep in an attempt to keep the peace. I try to be as dignified as possible in stating my wishes yet you get offended at MOST attempts, not realizing that though we are very much alike in personality, I am different than you. I do things different, I think differently, and I see life differently than you do. I try to pass off the things that bother me about you as part of your charm, part of what makes you YOU. Most of the time my differences offend you, which leads me to thinking you don't have respect for my differences. You are frequently arguing with me about my decisions in life such as when you asked me when I was going to stop getting degrees and start raising your grand kids, not acknowledging that education is important to me, that unlike you, I don't want to be a stay at home mom. I want my children to have the example of TWO educated parents in careers that fulfill their happiness.
Through all of this, you have wanted me to sugar coat my requests and have a discussion with you about my concerns regarding my daughter, stating I am rude and controlling. I seems that you see your lack of control in situations is equivalent to disrespect from me to you. You interpret my directness as hurting your feelings when you have had NO problem speaking the same way to me all of these years. Well, I have knew for you....
You are NOT in control of me, my marriage, or my parenting, END of discussion.
I am not going to sugar coat ANYTHING in my regards to our daughter, END of discussion!!!!
I do NOT owe you an explanation when my actions and words protect my daughter, END of discussion!!!
She is NOT your child, END of discussion!!!
You are NOT her parent, END of discussion!!!
I am NOT here to do you bidding, END of discussion!!!
Our daughter's health and well being trump your feelings being hurt, END of discussion!!!
I have EARNED the right to be a control freak in regards to my daughter's life and I own and take responsibility for this trait as a mother, END of the discussion!!!
In OUR home, OUR wishes are paramount, ANY other guests are respectful of how we run our home, END of discussion!!!!
I don't have to have this discussion or disagreement with ANYONE else but you, that should tell you something, END of discussion!!!
Finally, in regards to our daughter's care, there will be no discussion, END of discussion!!!