There are some things that just stick with you. No matter how far or how fast you run from them, they remain. Watching. Even mocking. These things become a part of your story, a part of who you are. And me almost giving up on motherhood is just that–it’s a part of my story.
November of 2013 made 4 years since I considered relinquishing my parental rights to my daughter. I was an overwhelmed, broke and lost college student. I felt I had nothing to give my baby girl.
“Mama, I just don’t know what to do.” I had just gotten a disconnect notice for our electricity. I was $400 in the hole. “They’re coming to cut the lights off tomorrow,” I said through tears. “I just can’t do this.”
Working 10 hours a week didn’t allow for an electricity bill of that size to be paid in one day. Tiny payments here and there only got me so far and after a while, it was all due. At the same time. I’d called Energy Assistance earlier that day. “Is there anything you can do to help me,” I asked the intake worker. “Well, I will run this information through and see what I can come up with, but it will still take a few days.”
“Thank you,” I said. I didn’t have a few days. Before she hung up, the intake worker said, “It’ll be okay.” I thanked her again, hung up and burst into tears.
“Mama, I just can’t do this. I should just give Jordyn to a family that can care for her. What kind of mother can’t even keep the lights on for her child?!” I was beyond bruised; I was broken.
My mother spoke to me in the encouraging way that she always does, but this time I couldn’t hear it. Her words could not penetrate the pain that was surrounding my heart. We hung up under the understanding that if push came to shove, we could come to her home until I got back on my feet. She told me to pray.
And won’t He do it…
My mom must have been praying something fierce (It definitely wasn’t me because I couldn’t muster up enough energy to think, let alone pray.) because the next day, my lights were on. And on that Friday, I received a holiday bonus. And if memory serves, it was $392 and some odd cent.
Every time I think about that time I almost gave up on motherhood in November 2009, I feel something in the pit of my stomach. I’m not sure if it’s guilt, shame, relief or remnants of resilience. But it doesn’t matter because I learned so much from that experience. I learned that sometimes you have to break down to be built back up, while other times you have to give up to go on. Even though it would have meant going 2 steps back, I would have stayed with my mother if I’d had to. When I woke up the next morning and the electricity was still on (I later found out that it was definitely supposed to be off, but the weather was too cold to legally disconnect.), I took that to mean that it wasn’t over yet. That being my daughter’s mother wasn’t over yet.
So there it is, a part of my story. The time I almost gave up on motherhood. If this resonates with you in any way, please feel free to leave a comment. I’m sharing this instance in my life, not for likes or amens, but because my story is also someone else’s.
This post is a part of #NakedMoms. On the 14th of every month, I’ll be revealing the truth about motherhood with 12 other writers. Follow the hashtag #NakedMoms, and check out the links from the other women below.
To Be a Better Mom You Have to Give Up by Steph at Confessions of A Stay-At-Home Mom
I Am A Recovering Perfectionist by Thien-Kim at I’m Not The Nanny
Giving Up On Perfect Single Motherhood by Laila at Only Laila
Motherhood: The Sacrifices No One Tells You About, But You Need to Know by Joyce at Mommy Talk Show
To Let Go and Let God by Jacquie at The Sweeter Side of Mommyhood
I Didn’t Want to be a Mom by Summer at The Dirty Floor Diaries
Mothering While Introverted by Diamonte at Liberated Mommy
Motherhood is About Giving Up by Jessica at A Parent In Silver Spring
Motherhood: I Give Up by Stephanie at When Crazy Meets Exhaustion
Giving Up Supposed To Be by Brandi at Mama Knows It All
Giving Up And Getting Down by Heather at Diary of A First Time Mom