New to the story? Get caught up here (part 1) and here (part 2)
By the time Darrin came around, I thought maybe I could keep things under control. I was still dealing with some heavy baggage, but I was determined not to make mistakes that I had made in the past.
Also, I was determined not to be like my mom. Before you think that I am blaming all my problems on her-- that is SO not the case. While I do place some of the blame at her doorstep, I also lay some blame with my dad. But the biggest percentage of my problems lie at my doorstep. All my life I have been a pleaser. Probably been bred to be that way. That tends to happen in households where a certain amount of fear was the preferred method of discipline*.
Between a combination of my upbringing, a depression brought on by either situation or genetics (and really, does it matter how I got it?), the Obsessive-Compulsive Personality Disorder diagnosis, and anxiety it was really a wonder I could get out of bed in the morning. But I did. I was determined not to let my disease(s) affect my children.
There has been more than one time I have worried that my problems are genetic (all the docs seem to think that is my case). I worry about my daughter the most. I guess because she is a girl, and the girls in my family seem to be affected the most all the way back to my great-grandmother.
I have had a fleeting thought now and again that the boys would/could show signs. But somehow I thought it would be the younger boy, not the older one. He (the older, Nicholas) is so much like me. Needs to be in control, Type A, overachieving eleven- year old.
A year ago, I started to question his attitude. Seemingly overnight, he was like a child I didn't know. I thought back to my own pre-teen years and thought perhaps that I wasn't "just a girl going through puberty." Could it have been that I was depressed, could have been helped had someone thought to look a little deeper? No one talked about depression especially children in the 80s, so why would I have been so special.
I went to my parents with my sudden epiphany, and they laughed my hypothesis off just as if I had said I was going to clown school. I was being an over-reacting, over-protective, over-thinking mom. "He's 10! Just let him be. Boys will be boys!"
Why did I ask them? And further, why didn't I go ahead with my gut? This is my child I was talking about. Wasn't I trying to break the cycle I felt trapped in?
To be continued....
*We weren't abused. At least I wouldn't say that. But, there was fear and most of my evenings were spent walking on eggshells. Not because we were afraid of getting spanked (and we would if needed) but because my dad was always grumpy. Nothing pleased him.