Unfortunately, her dislike for Craftymama was obvious every time she came over, and she only ever seemed to focus on the girls. She was never out right rude or hurtful to the boys - ever. She even bought J a bike for his 2nd birthday, which he still loves today! Her relationship with the kids became less and less established as time went on. Both because of her attitude, and inability to compromise, and because of our own inability to work with her. No side was completely in the right during those years. We all made mistakes.
Last year, for my birthday, my mom took me out for a nice dinner. We hadn't really had a good chance to talk, and she is my mom - so I missed her. I was hoping this was a starting point, so to speak, to develop a relationship and to begin to work together. No, it wasn't. At dinner she told me her terms: she wanted regular visitation with the girls only, and after developing one with them, and through them would develop one with the boys over time. I tried to just outright say no, but she told me not to answer, and to go home and talk to Craftymama and Glassman. She also told me that if I did not meet her terms she would be taking me to court.
I went home and talked it over with the other adults - we were all in agreeance that this wasn't in the best interests of any of the kids, and we weren't going to do it. On June 12, she called me and we talked, and I told her what our thoughts were. She said some very hurtful, and mean things which I will not repeat here as there is no point, and essentially told me she would see me in court.
A few months past and I have heard nothing, so I honestly thought she was bluffing. But then I get a call from SisterE who tells me that my mothers lawyer had contacted her to get a statement, and that while she agreed that my mom should see the girls, she didn't agree with what she was doing. A few weeks later I was served. That was not a positive experience. In the notice she stated she was seeking visitation, monthly, between her and the girls and every 3 months between my sisters and the girls. This was a shock - because it meant both my sisters were taking me to court as well, which was weird because I had never prevented any of my kids from seeing them.
This is when I closed down my blog - so that nothing I had said here could be used as evidence against me.
I confronted SisterE about being a complainant, when she had told me she had just given a statement, and she said she didn't know she was on the document and would talk to my mom as she didn't want to be. Later, we talked and decided it would be best for me to keep her on there so that it looked like I was willing to work with them.
First court day: just my mom, her lawyer, and me - representing myself because lawyers are expensive. They ask for a mediation, I say it's pointless as there is no middle ground - she wants to see just the girls, and I refuse to allow it. So we set a court date.
Second court date: my mom, my two sisters, the lawyer vs. Me. It was an awful experience and I had to choke back tears several times. It is not enjoyable to cross examine your family, trying to prove them wrong. It is not a fun place to be in to feel like it's your whole family against you. It is so hard not to give in as these are the people that raised you. It's hard to do that sort of thing with people you love.
I won. No visitation with my mom, but I did grant with my sisters.
I had honestly hoped this was rock bottom. That we would somehow use this experience to rise up out of the dirt and work on salvaging a relationship. I don't know what it could be or what it would look like, but I thought this was it. I have tried to text my mom a few times, and she never answers. Tomorrow it her birthday, and I will text her again.
I don't know what the future holds for my mom and my family. I miss her - she's my mom. I want my kids to have extended family. I know when my mom passes I will hate myself for not having a relationship with her - even though it was just as much her fault it never happened.
i will always love my mom. Always. But I'm hurt too, and that can't be ignored or erased.