Family,  Grandparents Raising Grandkids

Be Careful What You Wish For – You Just Might Get It

I never truly understood the power of The Law of Attraction until I received what I was focused on. I just wasn’t prepared for the delivery of, or the answer to, my dreams.

Be careful what you wish for and The Law of Attraction.

If you’ve heard of the Law of Attraction, you will understand the statement “Be Careful What You Wish For.” The Law of Attraction states that you will receive what you focus on. It plays no favorites and has no emotion. No negative, no positive, it just delivers.

For years, I was focused on how to help my daughter and wishing I could do it all over again and make better choices in handling her drug and mental health troubles. Oh, I knew that I couldn’t go back in time and re-do it. I knew that there was no use dwelling on mistakes and oversights of the past. I knew, but still, there was the deep guilt that only a parent can understand, “if only.”

All children need love.The call came one morning at about 8:00. My 8-month-old grandson’s father called to see if I’d heard from my daughter. Long-story-short, she left her infant son alone in the apartment the three of them lived in early one morning. My grandson’s father worked nights and she had spoken to him during the night and told him that she wouldn’t be there when he got home. Inexcusably, she left Sammy alone in the apartment as he slept in his crib.

I immediately went and picked up Sammy. My daughter showed back up at their apartment later that day but I kept Sammy for a week. I brought Sammy back and agreed to leave him with them on the days/nights that Sammy’s dad had off. That started our routine of keeping Sammy 3-4 days/nights a week.

During the next couple of years, things remained rocky and eventually got worse. Sammy’s dad lost his job and didn’t work for 6 months then his parents eventually split up.

One of the hardest things I had to do was to turn my daughter into Family Services after going to her place to find her asleep, once-too-often, in the back bedroom, with the door closed, and Sammy running around the trailer by himself. I would have to pound on her bedroom window to get her to wake up and open the door. He was only 3 years old. Often times, when I arrived he would be sleeping on the floor behind his closed bedroom door where he had been trying to look under the door. Family Services said that they found neglect, but there was no imminent danger and couldn’t do anything. They could suggest parenting classes, but couldn’t force it on either of his parents.

Child left alone.We were accustomed to Sammy crying when we took him home to either of his parents. Our hearts broke when he sobbed because he didn’t want to go home to them. We were at a loss as to what to do. We didn’t have any legal right to not take him to his parents and Family Services couldn’t, or wouldn’t, take action. One day as we were taking him home, he had such a violent reaction when we told him that we were taking him to his dad’s, that I recorded part of it. Something was going on, but we had no way of knowing what. We just knew that we had to do something, and soon; we just didn’t know what we had the right to do.

At the age of three, Sammy was already starting to self-harm. When he got upset, he would bang his head on the floor until it was bruised. During the times that we had him with us, we would keep him from banging his head and the bruises would start to heal. But, when we picked him up from either of his parents, they would be right back. As Sammy’s behavior continued to deteriorate, we were driven to do something, so we consulted with an attorney.

This was not an easy decision, and yet, it was the only one we could do. I knew that by taking a stand and stepping in to bring stability to my grandson’s life, I was sacrificing my relationship with my daughter. But I knew that if anything ever happened to Sammy because I was afraid, I would never forgive myself nor would I be able to live with myself.

Without going into the details in this writing, we petitioned the court and were granted an emergency guardianship when Sammy was 3-1/2 years old. When his parents failed to show up for the initial hearing, we were granted temporary guardianship. At that moment, we officially became Grandparents Raising a Grandchild.

When you become a Grandparent Raising a Grandchild, your life forever changes. One of the first thoughts that go through your mind is, “This isn’t the way it was suppose to be.”

So the Universe was listening and provided, just not in a manner I expected, or wanted at this time in my life. We went into this because we loved our grandchild and wouldn’t have been able to live with ourselves if anything happened to him because we looked the other way, but challenges persist every day.

Grandparents raising grandkids have challenges.

Don’t get me wrong, I’d walk through fire for Sammy and will do anything to protect him and to give him a safe-and-secure life, but the emotional, physical, and financial costs have been great. Despite the costs, the rewards have been just as great and the peace-of-mind that he has a safe and stable environment allows us to sleep a little better and takes a huge weight off our hearts.

[Names have been changed for identity protection.]

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