Monday, October 18, 2010

I swear I don't sit around complaining...

Seems like the only reason I blog anymore is to bitch. I'm sorry about that friends. I am consciously trying to avoid blogging now days specifically because I don't want to spend my time sitting around complaining. That being said, I have had some news this week that I cannot wrap my brain around. I have written before about my sisters E and T, who went on the cruise with me. These are sisters from my biological father. I also have a brother from their family. From my mother I only have one sister whose name also starts with an M. I will call her Em Emily or Emma, just to keep things straight.

Em is my baby sister, five years younger than me, which makes her 26. The news I got this week that I cannot wrap my brain around is that Em is pregnant....with her 5th child. Yes, you heard me correctly...her FIFTH child. She is also on her second husband. She has 2 boys with the first man (one of whom is disabled) and a boy and a girl with the current man. Em also has major health issues that made it necessary for her first two children to have to be delivered early enough for the both of them to be medical miracles (we're talking second trimester births here!) and has needed a hysterectomy for the last 6 or 7 years because of these health problems. Its a miracle any of these babies have survived, they were all premature, she has almost died with every single one of them and now she is pregnant for the 5th time. Someone, please, please, please, explain to me: Why would a woman want to go through this??? I might need to add, although doing so clearly counts as gossip, that they are so financially strapped that they are frequently on government assistance, never have enough of anything that the kids need, her husband has only recently gotten a stable job and it might turn out to be seasonal during the farm season and end when the winter comes! Add to the fact that the house is so filthy that Em and I have come to blows over the condition those kids live in and that myself and my kids would never set foot into the house and I am doubly confused as to why...why...why on God's green earth would she have another baby???
She swears to me that protection was used and that she didn't want to have another baby and that she has no clue what they are going to but to that I say: Why didn't you fix the problem with either of the last two pregnancies?
For the love of God, what would possess someone to be so irresponsible? I love my children but when I knew we couldn't support anymore mouths or that I couldn't possibly handle anymore stress we took care of it with a little snippity-snip-snip!
I really have tried to let go of things like this in her life since we lost Mom. Since losing Mom I have tried to focus my sole attention on my own family. Life is short. I learned that from losing both my parents before I was 28 years old. Losing Mom in particular has forced me to start seeing what motherhood really is and the effects you have on your children for years to come. I have memories that are important to me that I am sure my Mother would never remember because to her it was just another passing moment in the day. It shows me that every moment is the chance to make a memory. It probably contributes to me feeling like a failure a lot because it adds more pressure than I need right now, but it also helps me remember what the big picture is here. Because of all of this, I worry about what kind of things Em's kids will remember growing up. Will they only have memories of filth and want? Will they have memories of Mom being so stressed and tired that she was never happy? (I'm assuming the stress because why wouldn't a 26 yr old with five kids be stressed?) I know she loves them, but what is the quality of the life she is giving them? What is the point in having more children than you can logically handle or support?? I have been praying so hard about this situation. I haven't said anything ugly to her about it, because really, what's the point? The fact is that there is going to be a new baby whether she needs another one or not. The baby is going to need love either way. I do love those kids. I love them enough that I've already told my husband that if the state ever stepped in because of the circumstances I would take all of them into our home rather than see them go to the state. At this point I just keep thinking, how can I possibly do that if she just keeps popping them out like Pez candy??
I feel bad for most of the feelings I have and I'm working on that. I love my sister, we're just nothing alike and have never seen eye to eye on anything. I pray that she finds a way to cope with all that she has been dealt. And, if the state ever comes knocking on my door, I'm going to need very large Valium and mainline of Capt. Morgan to stay sane.


SSW said...

One word sums up her "SELFISH". Selfish for the self destructive way she lives her life with no concern for her kids, selfish for only thinking of herself, selfish for putting her kids through a tough life and only making it tougher! SELFISH!

K. Erickson said...

While my gender disqualifies me from rendering opinions on certain aspects of your post, I can say that those kids will have memories (good and bad) of their upbringing just as you and I and the rest of us do. It's just a fact of life. As the aunt, your job is to be an example and (hopefully) stabilizing influence in their life. As for your sister, instead of coming to blows...look for a teachable moment where you can connect with her in a loving way. Perhaps suggest that a tube tying after delivery of #5 might be a more practical solution than relying on "protection". Or, perhaps your husband can suggest that a vasectomy is the right thing to do for his family.

Melanie said...

SSW- Yes, my thoughts exactly!

K.- I do try to be an example and I never blame the kids. I love them so much. It's really beyond "teachable" at this point. Tube tying, hysterectomy (since she needs one medically anyway), vasectomy, birth control..I've tried to talk to her about all of it. While I love her, she is the sort of person who will say she doesn't have the gas money to go to her Dr.'s appts but goes out and buys a $200 IPOD with cash from her disabled son's disability check in the same transaction that she buys $200 worth of food with her food stamps. It ain't right..but that's how it is.

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