People Are Who They Are!

For Endeesea

You speak of Karma. You speak of preplanned destiny. If you look back on your life you will see it in action. We tend to look back and see the consequences of the bad things we did, but not the good. Even the unintended good. I would like to tell you a story that will perhaps show you how I believe we are put in a place for a reason in different times of our lives.

When my ex husband and I were young we got into a bad financial situation. It wasn't the first time, nor would it be the last. We moved in with two brothers who were friends of ours. We were pretty much all rough necks. The brother that was actually our friend, Mike, was about 35 or so and we were in our late 20's. Mike had been messing around with a young girl who was about 17 and she had gotten pregnant. He tried to do the right thing and married her. As rough as he seemed, he was the one who was trying to straighten up and do right and she was the "wild thing".

My daughter was about 5 and my son was about 18 months old at the time. My husband and I had a hard enough time getting along and living with these folks didn't help. I was not happy with the situation at all. Judy, the young girl, was just that. A young girl who was married and pregnant and really wanted no part of either. Mike had never been married before or had any children, and really wanted to make this work. I felt bad for him.

I was always taught to make a home wherever I was, so I went about turning this chaotic house into a home. After all, there was a baby on the way. I cleaned and organized. I would tell Mike or his brother what I needed and they would get it. I set up a nursery in their bedroom. I cooked meals every night and for the first time, they learned to sit down to dinner as a family.

Judy went into labor about six weeks early. She delivered a three and a half pound daughter and they named her Trish. What ever disconnection I had felt before was suddenly gone. I had been induced into labor at eight months with my own daughter and she was born weighing three and a half pounds as well. The hospital sent Judy home with this baby when it weighed a mere four pounds. I was horrified. Babies are fragile enough when they are born full term and full size, but to turn a four pound baby over to a 17 year old? Well, I couldn't believe it.

My husband and I told Mike we would find some place else to stay so that they could have their space with this child and work on being a family. Mike actually cried and begged us not to leave, so we stayed. Judy came home with the attitude that she had stayed straight long enough to get this kid into the world and she was finished. She would disappear in the afternoon and stay out all night and then sleep all day while the guys were at work. I was suddenly the new mother.

Judy wanted no part of this child, but she didn't want Mike to know it because she didn't want to move back home. I fed this tiny baby, and kept her dried and clean and happy. Judy would hold her every now and then but when Trish would cry she would hand her back to me. Judy was supposed to be breast feeding but I caught her getting high so I made her stop and put Trish on formula myself. Judy would lay down with her during the day and pass out and not hear Trish when she woke up crying. She would get frustrated and angry because Trish cried so I would take her away. Judy would sneak out the door when I was busy and leave without even telling me. Of course she left Trish with me. With every passing day, I knew I needed to be there to protect this child.

We stayed there for probably a year and all the while I cared for this baby. Eventually, Mike made Judy leave and I taught Mike to do all the things that I had been doing for Trish. He became an excellent daddy. By the time we moved out I felt very comfortable leaving Mike to tend to his daughter on his own. She survived those first critical months and I will always believe it was because I was there.

The point of this story is that we never intended to have financial troubles. We never intended to live with this couple. I was not happy about being there. I was full of anger and self pity throughout the beginning. But suddenly, there was a reason it had happened. I didn't see it for what it was then, but years later as I looked back on my life and wondered why so many bad things had happened, I began to see the good things that came about because of those bad things, none of which I had planned.

Life is what we make of it, but there are definitely parts of it that are planned for us. We may not see it for what it is while it's happening, but later in life we do. I have been in so many messes that just seemed like I was in the wrong place at the wrong time and doing all the wrong things, but when it was all said and done, I did something during that "episode" that helped someone else. I could tell story after story that confirms that. 

I guess what I am trying to say is, don't be sad because of what you haven't accomplished or because things don't turn out like you think they should. If you look deep enough you will find that you did some awesome things along the way that you never thought about. You probably helped people that you never knew you helped. That's what you should live with every day. You are still here, so there are still things left for you to do. Embrace that and be happy.

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8 responses

  1. Okay, I gotta ask … what happened to Trish? Do you still hear from her?

    May 8, 2010 at 3:24 pm

  2. I wondered if anyone would ask that. I kept in touch with them for quite a few years. The last time I saw them, Trish was about 12 years old. Her dad was still single and was still raising her by himself. She was a great kid and he was a great dad. Judy never got back in the picture at all. We lost touch with them after that though. I've often thought about her and wondered how they were.

    May 8, 2010 at 3:44 pm

  3. Bravo, standing ovation to you! So right in so many ways – and bless you for thinking of that little baby,as you gave her a life. A life well lived, Ladywise.

    May 8, 2010 at 5:44 pm

  4. Oh thank you so much Flamingo Dancer. Thank you very much.

    May 8, 2010 at 5:59 pm

  5. What an encouraging and beautiful post about how you took a difficult situation and turned it into something beautiful. I am sure that every once in awhile, Trish comes to mind, and you smile to yourself, knowing that you helped her survive her first year. Happy Mother's Day!

    May 8, 2010 at 7:24 pm

  6. Thank you Freedom. Happy Mother's Day to you too hon.

    May 8, 2010 at 8:01 pm

  7. Indeed, you make some valid points, Ladywise. I recognise what you're saying and know that regardless of who I am or what I've done or haven't done, the universe will continue on. None of which changes my belief that I'm in the grip of Karma, as we all are. What I need to do is accept that which I cannot change, and use that which I can.

    May 8, 2010 at 11:15 pm

  8. Endeesea, I'm just saying that you should be happy honey, because, as you say, you are in the grip of Karma, and there are so many things that you cannot change. So why be sad about something you cannot change? It's over. It's done with. Being sad certainly isn't going to change it.

    I jumped into this because I deal with this on a daily basis with a daughter that lives with it constantly. She wastes so much of her life "regretting", "reliving", "rehashing" her life and then letting all of those regrets cause her to do MORE stuff that she regrets later. It's a vicious cycle.

    We all have regrets no doubt and we all think about them every now and then. Hell, I have so many regrets I could probably sink a ship with them. And I used to do the "regret", "relive", "rehash" thing all the time. Now I look at it and say, "Why bother?" The past is by far the one thing you absolutely cannot change no matter what you do.

    What you can change about the past though, is how you perceive it. That was the point of my story. I could have looked at that time as, oh my God, we were so pathetic that we had to go move in with these biker type guys and one of their little sluts and she had a premature kid because she didn't take care of herself while she was pregnant and then she brought the kid home and didn't take care of the kid and blah blah blah. I did look at it that way for a long time. And because I looked at it that way and that was all I saw, I wouldn't let myself move up in the world socially because I was "pathetic". I made mistakes in this life so, screw me! I'm doomed to be a social outcast. I'm not worthy of getting anywhere in life or being proud of myself because, damn it all, I screwed up. Not just in this situation, but time and time again.

    But there is an "up" to every "down" in life, at least in my opinion. There are a lot of people that are so far "down" in life, that you could never reach them to help them if you were not "down" there with them. I was "down" there for most of my life. And again, I could just say, to hell with me, I've lived in the gutter and so I'm destined to be gutter trash. End of story. But I didn't let it be the end of the story because I didn't want my story to end there. Not just in the minds of everyone else, but in my own mind. I needed to feel good about me. And so I dug through all of those old memories, or wounds, and started looking at them from a different perspective. Oh wow. I probably saved that baby's life. She probably would have survived anyway, but I was able to shield her in those delicate first few months of her life because I was "down" there with them all. And if I look a little deeper still, I can say, wow, that baby shielded me during that time too, because if it hadn't been for her, I might have felt hopeless enough to do something stupid.

    It can have such a reeling affect that your head will swim. It is Karmic. I live in the throes of it constantly as everyone does whether they realize it or not. But the "trick" to it, is to muddle through it all until you find that "good" thing in there, that "positive" piece of the puzzle and thrive on that. The rest is just detail when you're done.

    I'm sorry honey, I didn't mean to jump on the bandwagon and lecture you or anything, but a tiny spark of sadness or regret can turn into a huge flame of descent. For me, it has become almost an art form to analyze every memory, every regret, every happening that bothers me so as to make some sense out of it. For the first time in my life, I can look back at otherwise regrettable situations without regrets. I can accept the past without the need to change it because I can change the perception of it. Because of this "ability", I can be truly and comfortably happy with the present and I want to share that "ability" with you. That's all I'm trying to do.

    May 9, 2010 at 7:09 am

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