Tuesday, March 29, 2011

She breaks my heart

On our way home from a friend's house tonight Fiona suddenly burst into tears. She apologized for not listening. Not because she didn't listen tonight, or today, or even yesterday; she felt bad because of all the times she hasn't listened in the past. I reassured her that she had nothing to apologize for, that I love her, that she is good and she needs to let go of these things and not be so hard on herself. But the floodgates were opened.

She shared her fear that I will leave her, or that I will be 'taken away'. She sobbed hysterically while she talked about her fear of losing me. She talked about her fear of going to school because of some horror stories boys in her class told her about a ghost at the school that cuts off kid's heads (yes, I've already emailed the principal and teacher!). She talked about how I make her feel safe, because I love her. I told her that her teacher loves her too, but she said that's not the same, because I'm her mom.

I said what I could to reassure her: ghosts aren't real, those boys are stupid bully liars (I know, not PC but I couldn't help myself), I will never leave her, no one can ever take me away from her, and most of all I love her always no matter what. The problem is, she doesn't believe me. She beats herself down, she thinks she's unworthy of love, she thinks she's bad. SHE IS SIX YEARS OLD. Why is she so hard on herself? How can I convince her that she is loved? How can I convince her that she is an amazing, beautiful, talented, smart, kind, vivacious, wonderful girl? Everyone who meets her is charmed by her. She has a light in her that burns so brightly, but she can't see it.

I am so scared of what her future holds. A lifetime of medication, of therapy, of depression and anxiety. Will her diagnosis shift to something even more sinister than what it is now? Will she abuse drugs or alcohol or herself in her depression? Will she live, or will she try to kill herself? What will her life be like? Will she ever learn to love and forgive herself? Will she ever learn to treat herself with respect and gentleness? How can I teach her these things?

It breaks my heart to see my little baby so incredibly sad and scared. It breaks my heart that my reassurances fall on deaf ears. I wish I knew what to do, how to be, to make it all better forever.