Monday, February 16, 2015


I broke a promise to myself.
When I knew your life began,
Never had I believed.
I could make it right. 
We started out hard
with my broken promises cracking under our feet.

Your tiny infant feet.
My never-a-mother feet.

I made a promise to you.
When I knew your life began,
That though I couldn't believe,
I would make it right. 
Every joyful jump you made
left my broken promises crushed under your feet.

I can't keep up.
You wait for me.

I hope I make it right.


"There's this fallacy in my head that I think, if I sacrifice enough, if I hurt myself enough, exhaust myself enough, have enough courage, I can do anything I'm supposed to be doing. That's what led to me being desperate enough to hurt myself repeatedly to get myself into an adrenaline-fueled state that only comes with physical danger, and then burning out so hard I landed in the hospital. I keep thinking that I'm just too lazy and that it's my fault; any grown woman as smart as I am should be able to remember to go to class. I've done it before; why can't I keep doing it? All those ideas come from when my mom pushed the "record" button in my brain, and they keep re-playing. Every success, in the back of my mind, implies that I could've done it all along, and so every success is a proof of laziness." -

That is the result of growing up with an unacknowledged mental, emotional, or developmental disability, and it is devastating.

That post I quoted and linked above is a long read, about a situation that is different from either mine or my child's, but it makes a point that is important to both of us: it's okay to be labelled with a disability if you do have that disability. My child does have ADHD, and having the label has made it possible for him to get the help he needs. I do have Major Depressive Disorder, and that label has gotten me the help I need, too. In my case, it has made it possible for me to help myself. I hope that someday it helps him that way, too. Acknowledgement and acceptance of the problem really is the most important step.


Inspired by life with my child, the author of chaoticidealism, life with myself, and the imaginary garden with real toads, where I've posted a link to this entry. Because promises are about love.


  1. My never-a-mother feet.
    I hope I make it right..... those lines really jump out at me. The hardest job in the world is being a mother. You worry constantly if you are doing it right, if you are messing them up for life, wondering if your own imperfections will mar them... my kids are grown now - terrific people who yet love me and show me grace. Lovely poem.

  2. Honesty and Love do shine through here and thank you for the followup explanation. No one is a perfect child or parent. But facing your disability will make a huge difference in both your lives - well penned here!