When I take the time to really reflect on my life and I mean really go deep in the past, I wonder simply, how the hell did I end up this way?
You see, most describe me as: sweet, too nice, dependable and very loving. I know that sounds a bit self centered but, I am just going off what I am told!
My family has and never will be a loving family.
Dinners at the table, were never a regular thing, in fact they were a rarity. Words of encouragement never really came, love and affection really was not a regular thing in both, my mother and father’s houses. In fact, it stems further back…my grandparents are not the affectionate kind either.
I have gone months without speaking to my parents and even longer for others. While some may find this a bit shocking, it’s not uncommon for us. I guess we never really made each other a priority and that is just how it has always been.
The family on my dad’s side … is the definition of aloof? ← Not sure if this is the exact word I am looking for… I am also convinced they mostly speak in mumbles, grumbles and the occasional rage outburst. Now, don’t get me wrong – there are times when I do have a somewhat normal conversation with them but let me tell you, it’s a shocker when it does happen. Aka: my entire ride back home is analyzing wtf just happened haha. The same goes for my brothers and well.. Honestly my mother and her family too. As you could imagine, holidays or family gatherings are super uncomfortable haha.
My single mother of 3, showed her love by explaining the importance of a credit score before I could drive. I mean, valuable information that ultimately did help me but we did not really talk about what I picture most mothers do or see in movies (damn you media)! There was never long phone conversations, movie nights, or bonding really. Whenever I have tried to open up to her and seek her guidance about things in life, she ignored me, literally. She still does this, she will focus on something else and never actually listen to me or she will find a way to turn it around and talk about herself. For example, the day my ex-fiance left me….6 years together, wedding plans and deposits paid and done for….just up and left and I was a disaster. My life completely turned upside down because I put a lot of effort and love in those years, his family became mine and I was closer with them than my own family….just gone. She swung by the house my ex and I just purchased and said “Well your best friend is here, you are crying and he is not here. Something must have happened.” As I try to choke out the words of what occurred…her response from across the room, scrolling or typing away on her cellphone (typical) simply was “well, sometimes people just don’t work out. Now, let me tell you about my shitty day at work and how my manager pissed me off.” That was it. No comfort as I was shattered, no words of love or encouragement or a hug. I never spoke to her about it again. It has come up here and there while I had to clean up the mess that he left but that is just how she is. I have many stories that follow that same responses or worse. The time I came to her about my deperssion when I was younger was also a horrible experience…she just does not get it and never will.
My mother did buy me things and I think that is just how she shows love? A random new leather purse, jewelry and things of that nature – while nice I guess, it is just not how I show love. She is not a terrible person, she is just who she is and as I mentioned, it seems that this stems further back in her family line. A cool demeanor, curt responses, criticism and little support is just who she is, I have accepted it long ago.
My father, while an angry fella, I love him and I lived with him for a little while when I was younger after my parents divorced. Those times were lovely, we would do things together like go camping, dirt bike riding, cook together and he also taught me how to shoot… which was nice – Daddy’s girl. He also took me to see Spice World and to a Spice Girls concert, I guess that was pretty cool and very “Dad” of him HAHA. However, when he found a younger woman who had a child, us kids kinda took the back seat in his life and they became priority. Whatever she or her child wanted, they got. He stopped doing things with my brothers and I. At times it was more apparent than others, but we slowly kind of faded to the background and it is still that way to this day. I have also learned to accept this, it took me a while though. I did not understand how a father could push his own children away and essentially place these others on a pedestal. Again, this is just who he is. He needs her in his life and will do anything to keep that going even though she leaves him often and comes crawling back over and over. I can just be there and support him when called upon.
My siblings, I have one full blooded brother and one half. I am closest with my half brother, we text and do things more often than the rest and I guess it has always been that way looking back on it. He has kind of been the normalish one of us and I am proud of him. He stuck to himself a lot, studied hard in college and made his way. He is a fellow nerd and so he usually is my Marvel movie buddy or xbox party member hahaha. My full brother was the troublemaker, most families have one I guess haha. I have been the support for him for as long as I can remember. I remember sleeping by the door when he ran away, hoping he would come back home. Or hoping he did not overdose and needed his stomach pumped again…. Mind you I was only like 10 when these things started happening. Pretty serious things for a young gal to try to understand and navigate the feelings associated with it. This came in waves and when I entered high school, he was sentenced to prison. I have seen enough prisons, both minimum and maximum to last me a lifetime. Putting together care packages and supporting him the best I could was all I could do. We would visit when we can but it was mentally and emotionally draining for me. I would do nothing but sleep the rest of the day. This was our interactions for several years, paid calls, exhausting trips and trying to encourage him to get back on the right path – which he did! Mind you, in his case while it sounds like he is terrible, he got hung up in a bad crowd and everything caught up with him. He is a good person, I think a stigma comes with that as well – he has always been good to me, in the best way he could. If he listened to anyone, it was me – my parents reminded me of this when I needed to remind him to get his head out of his ass :).
Eventually, he did. I think our growing up had a lot to do with how he spiraled out of control. He did not take well to my father pushing us aside and in terms of coping skills….not so much. I am proud to say that he did his time, which was way too long. He came out a better person, he has been on the straight and narrow ever since. Now married and living with his wife and her 2 kids. He really has amazed me.
So, as you can see – I never really had too close of a family. We lacked a lot of the qualities that families should have… if that is even a thing now? I look at my parents, whether it is their robotic ways, misguided priorities and just still wonder after all this shit and my genes…how did I end up this way?
How am I the opposite of most of them? A real black sheep of the family if you will. You would think that with the things that I have experienced, I would have turned cold because that is what I am used to and probably would have been easier than dealing with all of these feelings since I was young. To loop around to the beginning of my story, I am often told that “I care too much” or I am “too nice.” That I also let people take advantage of me, but perhaps it’s because I am used to seeing so much negative growing up, I try to find the positive in everything, I give second chances and love others too hard at times. I live by the phrases, you never know what others are going through so it’s best to be kind, even if they are not to you and to also be careful what you say, especially in anger because once it’s out, you cannot take it back.
While I take my 3 pills at night to help my anxiety and depression that has plagued me since I was 16, pop vitamin D when it’s raining for days because I just “cannot deal” with it, continue therapy on a biweekly schedule, suffer from some trust issues, live with the double edged sword of – slow to anger, sleep for days and withdraw at times… I guess I turned out okay? I am glad that I am not a cold person…especially when life has given me every reason to be.
If you made it here, congrats! Thank you for listening to my ramblings/thoughts about family and life. This has been sitting in my drafts for about a week. I have tweaked it a bit and really sat on whether I wanted to post this. It is very open, raw and quite gloomy haha. I am not sure if you will be able to take anything from this, but it was therapeutic for me. So thank you for your support.
Also remember that you are loved, worthy and special humans, I hope you a great day!