Promises, Promises

So I was hoping for an upswing this week, but it’s really just been more of the same just with extra amplification.   Hope is on an “I’m not worthy of anything good” spiral with the added twist of a dumping by the west coast love interest that represented the last connection to home. Me? I’m on a “Dear God, are you there? It’s me, ABM” Judy Bloom-style depressive episode. The energy in our house sucks arse. The Furry One has resorted to just sleeping to avoid us both.

I need to do some positive talk and make some public promises to myself.


I’m going to stop keeping score. Or at least the scores that do harm. This thing with my mom; I’ve been keeping score on how many times I’ve been hurt. I go over it obsessively in my mind all day, every day. There was something new this week that hit my gut so hard that it felt like the wind got knocked out of me. It was one of those pieces of information that you get at the end of a season of a TV show—total gut-dropping cliffhanger—and I don’t know what to do with it. It seems that the only thing I can really do is let it go, stop quantifying the grief and discomfort. I need to focus my energies on keeping score on my and Hope’s improvements and accomplishments, which include:

  • Hope made the honor roll during her first few months here.
  • We survived and rebounded from a horrible episode that needed more intervention than I imagined I would ever need to deal with.
  • Hope never stopped calling me mom.
  • Hope is starting to make friends.
  • Hope loves her hair.
  • I can see her stabilizing even when things feel really crappy.
  • She finally earned her own phone and her house keys.
  • She laughs and acts goofy more than she is sad.
  • Her emotional outbursts have stepped down in intensity since January.
  • And much more.

The ability to stop keeping score about the bad stuff is going to be hard. But I will have to try. It’s worth it.

I will tell myself that I’m a good mom and that I’m doing better than I probably think I am. It’s easy to get trapped into a cycle of self-doubt and like you effed up first thing in the morning when you swung your legs out of bed and put your feet on the floor. But the truth is, that you didn’t eff up. I didn’t eff up. Yeah, 75% of the time I don’t think I have any clue what the hell I’m doing but then I realize that my instincts aren’t so bad. I know I’m trying hard. I see us improving, and I can take some credit for that, right? I’m going to look inside and find my inner bravado filled rapper and rap to myself about how I’m doing a good job. #MCABM

I’m going to exercise more, and try to stop biting my cheek out of anxiety. I’m two weeks clean from baking stress cakes. I hopped on the scale at the end of last week, and I was completely horrified. I beat myself up terribly. Then I got up the next morning and went for a 3 mile walk. And I did it again and again. One morning I got up at 4:40, strapped on a headlamp and walked. I’ve always been an exerciser; I need to still be that. I’m hopeful that new meds will help reduce my anxiety and depression and help me find my way back to myself.

I only started biting my cheeks about 6 weeks ago. It hurts. And even though it hurts, it takes a bit of mindful awareness for me to realize that I’m doing it. I decided to peek at my cheeks yesterday. Oy. I bite my cheeks so much these days that they are bruised on the insides. Sigh…So I need to stop.


So these are my promises to myself. I will treat myself better for both my sake and Hope’s.



About AdoptiveBlackMom

I'm a single Black professional woman living in the DC area. I adopted my now adult daughter in 2014, and this blog chronicles my journey. Feel free to contact me at, on Facebook at Adoptive Black Mom, and on Twitter @adoptiveblkmom. ©, 2013-2022. All rights reserved. (Don't copy my ish without credit!) View all posts by AdoptiveBlackMom

8 responses to “Promises, Promises

  • DA

    So many people are writing about forgiveness today and I’m so glad for it. It’s such a complex struggle and obviously it’s a decision we must make every day. I’m thinking of you as you try to take down the score board. With my dad, one thing that has been helpful over the past two weeks is to think of one thing (it can be very small) that he did that was good whenever I find myself thinking about something that was bad that he did.

    Obviously, the bad things are ‘bigger’ than the good things, but I try not to get too caught up in that.

    • AdoptiveBlackMom

      I have many more good things to consider about my mom than bad things; the issue is that the icky stuff is recent and the recent stuff is so fresh. I’ve been wrestling with forgiveness; I’ve come to the space where I just need to focus on not keeping score. Not quite the same as forgiveness, but I think it’s what I can manage right now.

  • puddin85

    A head lamp!!!!!!!!!!! I need a picture of that ABM. You were serious about it lmbo. I love the promises. ..change in mind set….and your inner rapper. I could see you on some queen latifah type deal.

    • Mimi

      Can you see ABM with a kufi and a kente cloth wrap? Or the new, swanky, posh Latifah. Which one ABM?

      I am so impressed with you getting up and walking. Not only are you getting your exercise but also reflection and release time. I need to follow your example and get up and get moving. Keep it up lady.

  • AdoptiveNYMomma

    Good for you. Sounds like you are making some needed positive changes. Go for it and happy walking headlight and all.

  • Instant Mama

    Girl, you need a laugh right now! Somebody showed this to me a couple years ago for my first Mother’s Day as a foster mom. I LOVED it. So happy early Mother’s Day to you. Enjoy!

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