I wrote this many years ago while still involved directly in the foster care/adoption world.
As a trauma mama, I live in a completely different world than most of my friends, and many who choose to follow or friend me on social media. Though it brings me much grief, I don't even fault you for it. Most days I'm jealous and envy your normal. But, I am not alone. I'm surrounded by other mothers who live in worlds you simply can't imagine; where your 5 year old making a moaning sound or your 16 year old waking up dry are a success. A world where the hope is to end the day outside of a psyc er or hospital visit, a world where you are more educated about medication and disease than the latest intern who has been assigned to your case. I live in a world of darkness where light is sporadic and almost dreaded because of the knowledge it will quickly fade. I was reminded earlier of a time when I was still in church and one of my children said, "oh God" in front of the wrong person. She immediately chastised me saying, "I can't believe you let your child use the Lord's name in vain." I said, "Mam, I'm just glad it wasn't 'fuck you."
You see, while some of you are upset because your child didn't clean their room or because they have a C in science, there are mothers like myself who ache because their child cannot live with them or who go to bed in hysterics after the latest hours long tantrum that ended in a police visit or hospital admission.
We don't mean to be snippy or rude, we understand on a logical level that a C in science is a big deal, but we simply cannot reconcile that with the panic we felt when we got the call our daughter stabbed herself. We are trying. We are sorry. We are sorry for feeling jealous and lost and terrified that we may never ever get to be worried about science class or rooms being cleaned. Our tolerance level is higher. It just is. It doesn't mean we don't care that our child is failing math, it just means that in our world, the fact that she sat through class deserves a standing ovation. We are trying. We are trying desperately to fit into a world that doesn't even exist to most.
Our hearts are broken. Our minds are exhausted. On a scale from one to ten, we have passed a million. I'm not asking you to understand, I am only asking that you acknowledge our tolerance level is a little higher.