2004-02-24 - 2:05 p.m.

I've given alot of thought to the conversation I had with BabyMac this weekend.

At first I tried not to think about it at all, but it's getting in the way of other, much more complex and interesting things so I finally gave in and gave it some serious thought and here's what I figured out.

BabyMac is exactly that. A baby. Emotionally I mean. And that's why he sees what's gone on between us the way he does.

How he deals with the world and his problems is at least partially my fault. How he deals with ME and our confrontations is entirely my fault.

I (mostly) raised a boy I call J.P. I adore JP. He's one of those rare things/people that brings a smile to my face no matter what. He's 24 now and he has his problems, he's probably not where I'd have wanted him to be at this point in his life, but I'm proud of him. I'm proud of the man he is and the decisions that he makes.

I don't see J.P. very often, not nearly as often as I'd like, but when I do I realize that while we enjoy seeing each other, and catching each other up, it's a little like talking to a stranger. I gave him space to go and grow and become a man. I gave him the tools and then let him go at it. He did a fine job. While he was off becoming a man, I went off and got a new life. He doesn't really get what I do, and I don't entirely get what he wants to do, but there's still alot of love there.

It seems strange to have a boy, a boy I changed, fed, taught to walk and talk, a boy who I sang to sleep every night and got up for school every morning, a boy who told me that I couldn't ever get married because then he'd have no one to ride bikes with, a boy who almost always referred to me as "MY bunny", grown and living without me, independent of me.

That's what I wanted for him, and that's what I allowed him to do, and I wouldn't change it, but it still seems strange. Sometimes it's all I can do to not grab him and pull him onto my lap and will him into that beautiful beaming blond 2 year old. I don't though. I just marvel at this beautiful beaming blond 24 year old.

Then there's BabyMac. BabyMac is 30 (or 30 something, I don't even know) but to me, he isn't as old as JP. To me he will always be that child. When we relate to each other we relate, even when we're relating on a very adult subject, as mentor/parent/adult and child.

I have always protected him. It's not that I haven't been angry with him, it's not even that I haven't expressed that anger. It's that I've always couched it in love. I've always tempered it. I've never forced him to be responsible for his side of us. I've always tried to provide for him a space in which it was safe for him to say anything he needed to say, and get as angry as he needed to get and still know that I would be there.

And that's fine. When I started thinking about that I thought, well, that's what I did for JP and that's what I did for Don and it is reciprocated and while my relationship with JP is very different from my relationship with Don I know that I can trust them to do for me what I do for them. Love without question, even when I make it as hard as I can .

Don's made it plenty hard in the years I've known him, and JP has pushed my buttons and made me cry more than once too, but there has always been love. I have pushed back, I have made them cry, but they loved me right through it.

I never made BabyMac learn the second half of that lesson. He's said the words, millions of times, that he loves me no matter what, but he never understood what they meant.

I have always allowed him to vent while I have always couched. When he finally pushed me to my absolute limit, when I was so angry and afraid for him that I didn't know what to do I stopped wrapping my anger in a pink bow. I gave it to him full force, in the way he's given it to me all of these years.

If I had said to Don, or to JP what I said to him it would have lead to healthy discussion. It would have lead to tearful apologies on both sides and a deeper understanding of each other.

BabyMac, on the very first time I allowed him my vulnerability shut me out. Shut me off. I stopped existing in his world.

He was angry and hurt that I could ever talk to him this way. Because I never taught him how to respond. I never gave him the tools to move beyond the attack.

It's my fault. And yet, I don't want to fix it.

Because I'm tired of being responsible for him. I'm tired of taking responsibility for what kind of an adult he is.

I know I taught him how to be, but other people are out there, they've taught him too.

I do not react the way ONE person taught me to react. I am not the product of one person's guidence, why should his reactions to the world be the product of my teachings solely?

I refuse to accept full responsibility for his choices for the rest of his life.

I don't think we'll ever get past that. I don't think he'll ever forgive me for not coddling him right back into diapers, and I don't think I'll ever regret giving him the wake up call.

click here to add to the 0 comments so far

previous - next

about me - read my profile! Get your ow
n diary at DiaryLand.com! contact me older entries newest entry read other Diar
yLand diaries! recommend my diary to a friend! Get
 your own fun + free diary at DiaryLand.com!