This week we have a story from Pam, who has featured here many times before (eg here and here). She has been back to Texas on a trip with her youngest son, to see her grandchildren and one of her other sons, who lives there. Hearing her story, and reading it, I was struck by the challenges of parenting. The difficulties that come with unresolved issues and misunderstandings that go way back and the courage it takes to sort things out. Pam’s guts in making the trip, and in dealing with lots of hard times all through the many years she has been a mother (including on this trip), are really something. That she has remained optimistic and capable and loving through it all is amazing. Thanks a lot Pam for all you have done for all your kids, and to you and any other mothers who might be reading this, Happy Mother’s Day for Sunday! Now, over to Pam:
Hi All, This is take 2 – I guess I’m trying to do series now, so watch out for episode 3 hopefully to be written in May 2025! I need to tell you that I’ve been back to Texas. This time I took my son Jake and we went via Germany where we travelled around to lots of different places. I went to Sound of Music territory which was so nice and I saw the snow and that was brilliant. My son Jake, who is 15, is amazing. He organised all the flights, all the trains, everything. I just followed along.
When we got to Texas again there were issues with my older son. He didn’t let me have a voice. It is hard when there have been difficulties in the family over the years and some stories get cemented as the truth, when they may be not the whole truth or even not true at all. I think that happened in my relationship with Nathan – he blamed me for many things that happened when he was young, and it has never been sorted out. It’s complicated. It’s also hard of course when you are staying with a family with three little kids and money worries and all the rest, so there was plenty of tension. There were some big fights and misunderstandings between him and his partner Yvette, with me in the middle of it all. In the end I did manage to let him know my side of the story of his young days, and did talk about it all more fully than we had done before, so that did change things. The night after the big sort out, he walked in laid down next to me, put his arms around me and said mum I love you. He has never in all his life done that. It was hard for me back then (and now sometimes too) because I didn’t have the voice I believe I was meant to have. But I’ve worked out that maybe sometimes it’s not what you say but what you do that counts. The fact that I have hung in, and been to see him and kept reaching out (not to mention all the meals cooked and clothes washed etc when he was young) – and conveyed my ongoing care that way, also counts for a lot. So this time it was a totally different trip – some parts were so hard, some parts were so good. Nathan has three children now and the little boy in the photo from so many years ago the baby I named Chilli is so much like a little Mexican. He is pretty badly autistic – he can’t talk and there’s lots of things he can’t do but he loves his Nanna and I loved him as the other boys so all in all it was a really good trip. Again still learning lessons some hard, some easy. I’m not sure the purpose at my age of having to learn all these lessons but I thought I would just do you my follow-up story five years later.
I also want to tell you about how we seemed to be saved or protected from so many things on the trip. At one stage we were going to go on a cruise and if we had of done that we would’ve been on one of these cruise ships that have been a hotbed of the virus. The next thing is we went to Saint Antonio (in Texas) – the kids laugh at me when I say that because I can’t say it properly. We went a day early because of the fight I’d had at home with Nathan and Yvette. I was holding Chilli’s hand the whole time and I actually said to Nathan ‘if a bullet went through me and I was laying on top of Chilli to protect him would it go all the way through to him?’ Nathan said ‘no mum it would get stuck in your back’ and we just laughed it off, but the next day at the exact same time and same place where we were standing when I said that there was a mass shooting and nine people were dead. The next thing was when we were coming home the virus was already in America. Nathan came to the airport to see us off which he wasn’t going to do and he said mum please be careful the virus is going to be bad – we made it home just in time so we were protected in all of this and I am so grateful. Now to happier things please look at my pics and enjoy it thank you.