I was very upset for like a half hour this morning; after tasting the semi-familiar flavor of your words and how you use them.
I used to be so impressed by your wordsmithing; you know it’s true.
Today’s flavor, however, left a wretched, bitter aftertaste in my mouth.
After actually looking at your face again for the first time in over a year, it’s strange to me.
The vague and foreign-feeling man I see is a stranger.
There’s no stirring in my guts of those long gone butterflies.
There’s no emotional spark up my spine.
A smile no longer reflexively cracks across my face upon seeing yours.
Today, I realized I’ve really made a big mistake.
I was always in my own right to hate you – who you are.
Lately, the way I have been feeling so confusedly heartbroken over you again like it’s a fresh slight.
It’s like I stepped out of a time machine and am lagging in past circumstances while the rest of the world has gone on without me.
So I went back over things associated with the period of time from which I dissociated and checked out – specifically, things attached to you and me.
I learned that my alter ego dealt with you swiftly and coolly, as was only appropriate at the time.
Given how I had somehow managed to completely block out all the low-blows and cold-hearted actions on your part during that time-frame (not to mention all the venomous things you spewed at me non-stop while my Mom was newly diagnosed and dying), it’s a miracle I ever began to tolerate your presence in the Universe again at all, in any context.
I look in my settings on different websites to find your username and old IP Address on the blacklists everywhere.
Upon re-familiarizing myself with the sticky cobwebs, ghostly threats and promises of it all (and I do mean ALL of it), my mind became better able to recall the better portion of everything:
√ My desperation to shake you off my leg,
√ My feelings of suffocation and my anxious state of mind,
√ My fear of the overwhelming weight of it all,
√ Your incessant neediness and misdirected anger,
It was not “love”…it was not “love” at all…
It was just another missing chunk of time from my life that some buzzing sound in the back of my head tries to embed as having been “love”, historically.
Because, my brain needs to feel as if it has been “loved”, known “love”…actually felt “love” somewhere in those missing chunks of time, by someone.
It didn’t have to be you.
If it wasn’t you, it’d been the next guy down the line.
So it’s true: You are nothing special and neither am I.
WE are nothing and never were and I see that now and agree with you.
Not cut out to take a stroll through a park together.
So…over this past couple of months, I have been swallowing the unwelcome and unhappy ending to the story of ‘Me and Boo’.
Nothing about this process has been comfortable for me by any means, but I guess it has proven to be the natural order of my own existence; and so…I am trying my best to endure. It is a “one moment at time” gig so far…
I can vividly recall my own trains of thought in the past:
Stupid and blindly faithful belief in the notion that somehow and some way, Boo would miraculously recover from so many fucked up circumstances, and find her way back to sanity and a desire for normalcy…I have been feeding myself bullshit like this forever – since she was first sent away…and it is almost comical now to think back on the things that I denied myself of accepting for so long.
But, now, here I am…and nothing makes sense to me – for me – in terms of the future ahead and what I am supposed to do with it. It’s like someone finally found the restart button now after all this time and pushed it when I wasn’t as ready as I thought I was to start over again. In truth, I’ve wished for a fresh start with EVERYTHING for so long that I am stuck on stupid in the face of its arrival. Life doesn’t wait on anybody…and I have no choice but to pick that bitch up and run, right?
So, I have wiped the picture clean of the drama and unhealthy bullshit that has sadly come to define everything about my own, personal adult life – as an affect of such an emotionally unstable and unhealthy offspring; I have not wavered in my choice to do so, either – and I will not waver ever again in this context…I am sucked dry of the forces needed to interact with it anymore at all.
At first, it was just like it’s been any other time I tried to make a clean break from the living Hell surrounding my only child and her ongoing destruction: I felt weakened by the very aspect of her existence, I felt controlled and dominated by the constant lack of any input or influence on her lifestyle choices…I have felt that way since she was old enough to talk, in essence; and somewhere along the way, I lost sight of what is important in MY OWN passage through this world. I allowed myself to become so entangled with such a negative element (in this case, my own daughter), that I lost track of the things that I personally stand to represent in this fucked up world.
In reality, at the end of the day, everyday – I am quite different in nature from my child, in every possible way; and, as long as I am ending my own days under the spell of the lifestyle and code that SHE lives by, each one of those days has been spent in absolute vain and wastefulness. I’m over it. I am over the confusion and guilt and self-loathing and tears…I am over the shock and surprise of the despicable things my own child has come to stand for…
I realize that the stark contrast between Boo and I has been weighing like an anchor around my ankle for so fucking long now that I have gradually failed to even see it there or feel it’s drag.
It’s finally sinking into my thick skull that there’s NOTHING I can do for her, besides to enable her – which, I refuse to do any longer now…so the math is done and the answer is apparent and comprehensive; I need to just move on with myself.
Which, is a notion that I have struggled mightily with all along when it comes to Boo…a factor that is only becoming more obvious to me with each layer of its removal. But, as the light gets brighter down there somewhere at the end of whatever tunnel I am inside of, I can see the scars stitched up in my own heart and mind; and I feel something akin to “HOPE” again for my own emotional status.
Not hope for Boo…not hope for my long-evaporated, little family…not hope that balances atop of any unrealistic or unreasonable goals or motivations…just hope that I can and will get through the initial discomfort of suddenly NOT being anyone’s Mom anymore…
I have hope that I can hang up the bullshit and revive my true self, and my true motivations in my own existence…I have hope that I can surprise everyone, including myself, with my own strength and perseverance through this darkness…to fight.
I will be honest and admit that I have been inside of the darkest place I know of, mentally, as of late…I have struggled to get out of bed in the morning and cried myself to sleep at night…I randomly quit my long-time job and stopped returning phone calls…I have been resigned to sadness and loss…I have eaten myself with guilt and self-doubt…I have wished for death in a very serious tongue…I have cursed each and every God I know.
But in the end, I am still just ME…no amount of pain or discouragement can break my spirit, even when I want that to be the outcome; I am simply built that way, and I accept that much now. I guess right now is a time for me to figure out what comes next for ME and ONLY ME. I have recognized the fact that there will be NOTHING to come next unless I am selfish for a while and say “Fuck You” to the unnecessary drama and unhealthy bullshit.
Yesterday, the Orphan and I had the ever-dwindling opportunity to eat Super Burritos (one of our shared favorites) together at the hole in the wall next to Big Lots; it was nice because it’s been a while…(by a while, I mean like 2 weeks or something). Yeah yeah yeah, we live together – but you might know how that goes with two broken people under one roof: lots of time alone, in separate rooms, being broken for our own separate reasons…
He’s suddenly looking better everyday when I see him , as if there has been some kind of boulder lifted from his shoulder blades at a gradual pace. He is just like any other broken man that I know: proud and tough as nails – unable to resign even for a moment – unable to accept defeat (even when it’s shoving a brick down his throat) – working out the trauma he has just come through in abstract ways that personally soothe him best – he knows what he needs and wants, and he’s ready to get up and go out looking to find it.
Two weeks ago, he told me that he’d be going abroad for the Holidays – going “home” to his native country to be with his parents and childhood friends for he holidays. I will admit that part of me (being the Abandonment Issue Queen that I am) was crushed at this news; but the bigger, more humanitarian part of me was thrilled to hear that he misses them and desires a closeness to them at all. I settled on the agreement of helping him get his clothes folded and packed and smelling clean for the hugs he’ll be giving to his mom and dad and sister. This specimen of the Male Persuasion (the Orphan) is truly a rare creature; and it’s not often that I say this, but he has my 110% faith, trust and support in all he does. Since he technically began living with me, there are things that I haven’t been able to peg in regard to his overall personality; for example:
It has always stricken as very odd that someone like the Orphan, who is so logical, practical, fair, calm, non-confrontational, and most notably – well-educated; somehow found himself tied in with a creature who was the epitome of a man-eater – an extremely narcissistic/sociopathic female who has ended up being the one in his own experience to have “turned him cold” in regard to his willingness to LOVE.
When we first “met”, it was due to the healing process in which he is still enduring, resultant of the above described relationship. He reached out to me because he was desperate for answers, for the much needed closure that he already sensed he would never get; he was in despair and feeling without hope to push on. I instantly loved him, the little fucker; he is a human being…he is a good human being.
Since our initial online emails volleys (that sometimes became so obnoxiously long in the thread, it was disturbing lol), things have evolved quite a bit in the context of his hopelessness and my helplessness in the context of our everyday lives – separately and together. After his first visit (one that was kind of a spontaneous form of support on my part and a total leap of faith on his), he decided that this place felt more like “home” than any of his other options (and for the record, this guy has handfuls and handfuls of choices, worldwide); or, better described, he chose here to be his beginning point for the rest of life. Where his life might take him, who knows? But the point here is that he was intuitive enough to recognize a safe haven when he saw one – and jump on the opportunity to take some time to heal himself.
Back to the point of post:
Over Super Burritos, we were discussing things about our similarly terrifyingly sociopathic exes (a topic that we haven’t touch on for months because I think we both got tired of talking about so much ugliness nonstop), and he began to describe things that lead to a complete epiphany for me in regard to the recovering men(and there are sad numbers of this type of Survivor, unfortunately) who have been intimately involved with (and in turn, DESTROYED BY) a sociopathic/psychologically terroristic woman. This can even be his mother or another female relative or teacher, etc.
“Oh My fuck!!!”, I bellowed out of my chip-filled Sailor’s mouth, in my typical impulsive manner.
His eyes do this funny bulge/roll movement that’s all tucked into one motion whenever I behave like an obnoxiously drunken lion-tamer in his public company;
“Sorry…but you just totally made me realize something…I’m having a moment here…” I tucked both hands into my lap and asked him from across the table:
“Were you afraid of her, somehow?”
His eyes lock cleanly into mine as I finish the sentence; I’ve never seen the look that overtakes his charmingly boyish face;
“…because from ALL of the many things you’ve shared with me of your relationship with her, it sure seems as though the same exact process was there – with some minor tweaks and twists, yea…but there all the same…”
His head is nodding vigorously; a smile washes off that unfamiliar look of what?…recognition?…relief?… and he pokes his long index finger into the table in front of his plate.
“You know, so-and-so (a psychiatrist friend of his from grade school) says that we (by “we”, he means himself and every other man who has suffered the traumas of a destructive and narcissistic female) have the same affected state as that of domestic violence victims…”
My dumbfounded shock must be glaringly apparent, because he adds, “The constant fear and manipulation, the isolation from “normal” people in our lives who would speak up and say how abnormal things are…”
I catch myself with my mouth hanging open, nearly frozen by the seemingly obvious, in retrospect. I have no words to say that might even come close to acknowledging so many discussions he and I have had about the ways that he felt “trapped”, “obligated”, “guilty” by the slightest thoughts of leaving her and getting away from her unhealthiness.
This handsome little devil is a veteran of some seriously traumatic warfare – numerous war experiences – and I’m talking VALIDATED and VERIFIED horror…living Hell…he’s no sissy; he doesn’t shy away from ANY kind of challenge by nature (like me), and he was not raised in an unhealthy environment. The slap to the back of my head came hardest when I recalled how many people have said things along the lines of: “You don’t seem at all like the type of woman to become a battered wife…”, or “I can’t even imagine you being married to that type of man and in a situation like you were in – it’s NOT like YOU…” over the years of my ongoing recovery from my own traumatic marriage; and then put those recollections in context with the times that I have said very similar things to him. What an ass…I am still sort of processing the common threads and mechanisms between the two of us – based solely on the experience with traumatic marriage and the associated effects that we share in common from them. But I felt like it was worth writing down because it was a light bulb moment for me in terms of decoding the Orphan and his current needs and state of being. I have long recognized his “Shell Shock”, and try to treat it accordingly how and when I can; but now – – – well, now I have a more clear appreciation for the absolute Hell that he has survived through much more recently than I came through mine. Now, he has become that much more endearing to me because I see a healing process quite differently in everything he is doing.
All in all, it was a very eye-opening discussion that ended up trailing back home after lunch and continuing until almost dinnertime…yesterday was a very therapeutic day for us both I think. Good.