There is nothing worse than feeling powerless.
Mothers always believe they have the power to make things okay for their children. If they scrape a knee, you know how to make it better. If they have a fever, you know how to lower it. If it’s something worse, you know how to go to the emergency room. If they hate a teacher, you arrange a meeting. If someone steals their bike, you get it back. Whatever the problem is, you solve it.
If your child jumps of a cliff, you vow to make sure he’ll survive. If he’s not breathing, you still believe you can blow life into his lungs and bring him back.
Then, you keep pretending you have the power to punish the negligent or to force an apology or to find a grief group or to sleep soundly, or to hang on to your friends, or to get anything done that needs doing. But you are powerless.
Then after six months you ask the ex-husband if you can have some of your child’s belongings from before he got hurt but the ex says No, sorry. BUT, you say to him, but this but that, but I’m the Mother! No, he’s not ready because he’s too busy because he doesn’t trust you and anyway he’s going away for Christmas, just No. Sorry, but no, he simply can’t. He’ll “look through” the stuff but not now and not with you.
A hundred years ago, I married a rigid controlling person who was wrong for me in every way except for the fact of our beautful son, and now I am powerless against his need to say no to me.
This is why I could never accomplish Step One. I can’t accept that I have no power, even when it’s so painfully and irrevocably obvious.