I hurt people. Some of the people who I am closest with are also the ones whom of I am most unforgiving. A very bad thing happened to me around age 19, but I hurt people before that. And I’ve done it even more after. I feel like I am testing those who claim to love me. How much do you really love me? How many bad and stupid things do I have to do to you and around you for you to tire of this and reject me? How much do I have to hurt you before you decide that you are through with me?
Growing up, my mother withdrew. I don’t know why but I’m sure I could figure it out if I searched a little. She seemed to reach her limit with us (3 girls) and with her life (had to move to a completely different region b/c of my dad’s job) and would simply shut everything down. One time she drove away, said she wasn’t coming back and I sat at her bedroom window for hours until she pulled back in to the drive way. One time she went on strike and refused to do any housework and I remember taking my clothes from the wash machine and hanging them in my room to dry because I didn’t know how to work the dryer. Other times, when I was home alone (which I loved and would beg to stay home when she made very short trips out) I would go in her room, stand in her closet, open her drawers and very carefully pick things up and put them back in their place. I tried on her jewelry. I climbed into the attic, pried open a cedar box, and read all the letters she saved between her and my dad. I was stealth. She never knew I did all this and I’m still a pretty good snoop when I need to be. When Sister A told her about the bad thing, I sat at the top of the steps and listened in. I heard her say, “Why are you telling me this?”, she didn’t want to know. But we got help and moved forward from there.
I don’t know why I’m thinking of all this right now. But I am going to post it because it is the truth, these are my thoughts this evening. I’m not going to sugar coat them.
My big question is, “How much has alcohol played a role in all this?” How much has alcohol played a role in pushing people away or has it been that a bad thing happened at a young age and since then I’ve developed a very messed up set of coping skills. Or, thinking back to the few ways that I hurt people before the bad thing, is this just how I am? Am I just a complete asshole who pushes away the people who care the most about her? How much has growing up with a mother whose moods, reactions and tolerance level (boiling point) I could not predict impacted my trust in other intimate relationships? One connection that I have as an adult is that I mostly like predictability. I stay away from people who fly off the handle or go between hot and cold too quickly. If people show me a nasty side to them I tend to keep my distance after that because I don’t trust them anymore. I get a little nervous when I try new things because of the anticipation that it could go wrong or just not turn out well. When I have to plan a date or event I usually choose something I’ve done before because I want to know the place or that we will have a good meal/time.
I want to better learn how to acknowledge the past, and the conditioning that goes with it, while not activating it or engaging with it. I’ve always thought that we simply make the decision to forgive others and then move on. It’s over. Just don’t let it come in anymore. Now, I’m seeing that even when I make these decisions in order to live life on my own terms, bits and pieces of the past will still creep back in. It’s more so how I choose to incorporate the past into my intentional present life so that I get to control what I learn from past events. It’s similar to how Cleo talked about the 2 versions of herself. I have my younger self and I have my current self. My current self now has the knowledge and the capability to nurture and protect my younger self when she comes out.