April 5, 2017 was the day in which my life changed forever.
All the smoke and mirrors I had set up to make sure everyone thought that my life as a single mother was a complete success, came down at exactly 6:55am when my 17 year old daughter was carried against her wishes into a rental car by two strangers and her father. My last memory of her was her screaming, kicking, and being held by all her limbs while she tried to wrestle these three huge people off her. Barefoot, in her PJs she wailed so loud neighbors came out. They shoved her into the car, she bumped her head and in she went like a prisoner in her own front yard. Windows closed but I could still hear her screaming at the top of her lungs. Funny how everything was now out in the open for everyone to see. Our “quiet” little life was no more.
She was off to a wilderness program. I was numb- and still am because I can’t seem to process how in the hell we got here. Never even imagined we’d be in this place in our lives.
I had often joked that I was so happy I kept my daughter nourished and happy for 17 years because I have a hard time keeping anything else alive. In truth, my soul had been crushed for years. It was exhausting to keep a secret, and I was sick of secrets so it all had to come out at some point. I just never imagined it would all turn out to be this way.
This is my story. A story of a single mother who raised a lovely child, a sweet tween who then turned into an oppositional, challenging, manipulative, destructive and aggressive teen.