A Story of Recovery:
From Controlling to Loving
Last night, I had a very interesting conversation with my 16-year-old daughter who was sharing with me her feelings regarding a situation with her friends at school. I have been in program for six-and-a-half years, and thinking about this interaction with my daughter sent me back twelve years ago, to when I was in the food, my life was unmanageable, and I was a raging mum. That day, my two-year-old son was sitting in his high chair. My then four-year-old daughter must have done something wrong—I can’t even remember what—because I was yelling and screaming at her, my tense, red face so close to hers that she was walking backwards. I was throwing the tea towel on the floor, pacing back and forth from the kitchen to the living room, waving my arms in the air like a mad woman. I caught the look on my son’s face and all I could see was fear in his eyes. He scrunched himself as small as he could in his chair, making sure he wasn’t making any noise. I didn’t hit either of them, but I definitely thought I had scarred them for life. After that moment I thought, “oh, this is who I really am. This is the true me: a raging mum.” I hated myself for that.
Raising children has been my priority since I became a mum, and although each stage has its challenges and beautiful moments, I have always been terrified of facing the teenage years. But today, I don’t have to be a miserable, controlling mum. I am learning patience, tolerance, and acceptance around my children. When I want to lecture them, I ask my higher power to help me find the motive of my communication, and I am reminded to act from my heart, not from my fears. When I stop controlling my kids, I give them the space they need to become empowered to choose their own journeys. The tools of the program help me face life, good or bad. I love how, in each challenge I face, with children, work, health, friends, I always find a fellow member of FA who has gone before me, who can understand me, and who can share how they went through the challenge. Every day, I pray to be able to give back what is so generously given to me.