I could write a book on the things I’ve experienced in my life. From childhood to now, there is just so much. I feel overwhelmed at times, but being the ‘strong’, ‘independent’, ‘self-sufficient’ black woman that I am, I don’t like to feel weakened by anyone or anything. It upsets me when I feel myself losing power or energy because of depression and feelings of self-doubt. That’s where the statement in the title of this blog post comes in. When you’ve done all you feel you can possibly do, there does comes a time when you feel like it just isn’t enough.

I usually try to be upbeat and positive on here because I like for people to laugh, I like to make people think; about life, their situations… I want to be able to inspire people. I never want to be the center of some pity party because I can most certainly hold my own ground. But my friend John Skywalker and I have discussed this matter in the past and he has helped me come to realize that I am “enough”. And when I say enough, I’m speaking in a relation to my children and what and who I’ve been to them in their lives.

I look at my situation as no different from a lot of people. Not many that I know personally, but some… Three kids, same dad who seems rather disinterested in being a father and a lot more interested in his own agenda and his own life. He seems to want to concern himself with his kids only when its convenient for him. I have a problem with it so much because of the fact that we both grew up without our fathers in our lives. I grew up without my mother or my father so I feel pressed and obligated in a way that many may not, to always be here for my kids in any and every way that I possibly can. I know what its like to grow up without a parent feeling unloved and unwanted; I never want for my kids to feel that way. I wouldn’t want that for any child. Because it’s not a good feeling. To harbor pain and resentment in your heart for someone who gave you life is a feeling that is almost unexplainable.

A recent conversation I had with the father of my three children is what prompted me to write this blog post. I’ve talked to him time and time again about the same old things. Why doesn’t he spend time with the kids? Why won’t he at least call them regularly and see what’s going on with them? His answers are almost always the same. He knows I’m a good mother so he doesn’t worry about them. Or, he has a lot of personal stuff going on and he doesn’t want to drag them into the drama. He pays child support and although he doesn’t see them or spend time with them he’s no deadbeat because he is paying child support which is more than I can say for a lot of fathers. Those are just a few of the most common ‘excuses’. We live in the same city, not even five minutes away from each other. He knows my cell number and my house phone number. I tell him that I would rather him call the house phone because my cell is for my personal use and he can talk to them whenever he wants to if he calls the house and we’re home. But back to the conversation we had. He was telling me how he wants to make sure he gets his life together for “his girls” because they’re all he has and he wants them to know their daddy loves them. He said some other stuff and then went on to say that he wants to be able to buy our daughter Liah a car when she gets to be 16. In my mind I’m thinking what are you going to do in the interim before she gets 16? She’s seven! Do you really want to wait that long to “do” something for her??

He’s one of those fathers who feels that if he’s paying child support he doesn’t have to do anything else. He is so focused on the money that he is failing to realize that these kids need him IN their lives. Our son is slowly forming his own opinion of his dad and it’s not looking too pretty. See, I don’t have memories of my childhood from where my mom (or dad) paid child support or sent me gifts or clothes or shoes (the material things). I only remembered that she WAS NOT THERE FOR ME!!!! SHE DIDN’T CALL AND TALK TO ME!! To me, she were not concerned with ME! And it wasn’t so much my dad because I did not meet him until I was 15 years old, so it was more my mom. Sometimes I felt lost, like I didn’t know who I was. I felt like I was missing a piece of myself. I longed for that mother/daughter bond as a child. And when I got it as a teenager after I had Isaiah, it wasn’t even significant to me then. I didn’t want it. We didn’t get along and I hated it!! Not her, but the fact that the relationship I thought we would have in my mind, was NOTHING like the one we had in reality. And it hurt so bad. Like to my core, and it still hurts me to think about it now even at the age I am and the point I am at in my life. They say the past is the past. But no matter how hard you try to push the past to the back of your mind, it will always be a part of who you are in your present, and who you will be in your future. And I don’t think it’s about “if you let it”; its inevitable – it will ALWAYS be there. I love my mom and I appreciate her and the relationship we have NOW, but the amount of time it took for us to get to this point is… We just lost a lot of time.

I feel like there’s no need in beating a dead horse. I feel as if I’m all talked out. Like what more can I say that hasn’t already been said? Does something bad (God forbid) have to happen in order for him to wake up and realize that he is missing the best years of his children’s lives? Is he going to one day wake up and have this epiphany and say to himself “Where has the time gone? When did the years pass me by and how did I miss the most important parts of my kids’ lives when I could have made an impact on them?” I won’t stake my life on it or anything, but I don’t think that epiphany will be happening any time in our near future. Its like this; people who don’t go to church say, I’m going to “get right” and then start going. If you don’t go, you WON’T get right! You can’t do it alone! And with him, he’s like he has to get his life in order before he can have a personal relationship with his kids. But in a minute, they’re no longer going to be KIDS and they may not want that personal relationship when HE wants it. They want it NOW! It may take him another four or five years to get himself together; and where will his kids be in the mean time?

My friend John explained it to me like this: I’ve been so busy being enough that it’s difficult to see that I’ve been enough the whole time! No matter how much my kids’ dad comes in and out of their lives, I’m enough for them! I just wasn’t able to open my eyes to be able to see it because I was so busy being enough that I felt that they really needed him too when really… I’m enough for them! I did see it that way then, when he said it, and I loved the thought that I AM ENOUGH!! Although I have been enough their entire lives, I still feel that my children are losing out somehow because of their dad not being actively involved in their lives. Why must I feel that way? Why should I carry that burden of feeling like I’m not enough, when really I am. I feel in so many ways that my grandmother was enough for me growing up as a child, but I did miss out on knowing my mom and dad. I always had those thoughts of “what if”… Wonder if it will be like that with my kids when they’re older?