Thursday morning thoughts in May

Have a lot on my mind recently, so I’m going to continue writing about it here. Because this is my sandbox, to be used however I see fit. These types of posts aren’t really intended for others and I doubt they hold much value for onlookers.

Yesterday I got to feeling guilty again, mostly in response to the decision to cease contact with my mother. A part of me really does feel bad for her. She has had very few friends and doesn’t seem to be very good at taking care of herself on her own. Despite my own social awkwardness, hers is tenfold greater, though she doesn’t acknowledge it. I’ve always felt protective over her, so it feels wrong to just up and leave her entirely. But…I’m pretty sure I have to do this. Even though we have so little contact anyway, it still feels like a betrayal on my part. And I’m just gonna have to get over that.

My companion and I talked yesterday and some of these topics were discussed. He met each of my parents, as well as my Grandma, so he at least has some small amount of exposure to these folks and our dynamics. And he said that my parents had left me a long time ago, that they’re not really here, this is just me continuing to hold on. And he’s right, painful as that is to hear from someone else. It just really saddens me that it went this way, but it’s been going this way all along. Nothing new here. I’m just wrestling with the invisible…my ghosts. I am admittedly outraged with having been abandoned so long ago, back when I was just a kid and needed people, and I guess part of me got stuck in that point in time, wishing for a different outcome.

I’m actually kinda embarrassed writing about these sort of things so publicly, but I feel so compelled to do so. Like I need to shed my skin and bare my sadness without pretending it doesn’t hurt. Not that I expect people to read these sorts of things, but I assume those who do will think me crazy. Because we’re all taught to put on a smile and to not let folks know about our past problems, to play the mind over matter game, to try to make others more comfortable by keeping our pain to ourselves. Yeah, that’s the expectation, but why? Why must we pretend? Because we’re afraid of being judged, of looking trifling in the eyes of others? Well, these are cycles that continue on and on in people’s families, and part of the reason for that is that we’re afraid to confront them and to change course.

I did change course and began doing so long ago. I recognized my own upbringing created problems that aren’t conducive to starting a family of my own and that the buck must stop here. The chains were broken, but then I kept holding on to them, carrying them around, dreaming that minds and hearts would change with time, that maybe they would love me someday. And I feel like a fool for that now. But it was only human.

A friend said to me that these people are paradoxes that I’ll never figure out, and he’s right. But isn’t this true of any human being? That’s the mystery in our social realm, how we each are driven by so much irrationality that rational analysis can only take us so far. People come up with labels and try to pigeonhole a situation, but that doesn’t tell us what we really want to know. We want to know why. How come. Why bring me here if all you wanted to do was criticize and blame me, and then expose me to sick people before dumping me into society to either sink or swim? What was that for? Did it really make them feel any better? Do my failures and shortcomings make them feel any better about themselves? I don’t see how, and yet, I see them react as if this is the case. People feel driven to compare and contrast themselves, to feel saner or better than someone else, and perhaps some folks create people to suit those purposes, albeit subconsciously.

It’s embarrassing. Actually humiliating.  Very confusing and bewildering that primary family members would play such a wicked game. Underneath it all, I’m not tough, I just wanted to be loved and accepted, like anybody does. And I made a mess of things in my own life in trying to either avoid these thoughts and feelings or in seeking out the attention of others. Or, as in the case of completing college, thinking I might be able to earn my dad’s approval and respect by becoming a little more like him. Now that’s my own burden to bear, my own lesson to learn from and move on with.

Once upon a time I did have ambition. But a lot of that was tied to trying to prove myself to people who weren’t going to care either way. And now I realize I just want to sit with my friends and love them and be loved by them and find ways to make myself useful right here. Those aspirations of going somewhere bigger in life have left me, and I am now tired and burnt out. People like to look down on that sort of talk, but it’s really not so bad. It’s coming to terms with what I really do value and letting go of the pretensions that were intended to please somebody else. Because in all honesty, I’m happiest just being with the ones I love who love me as well, simple as that. If I never make much money, it’s okay. My parents value money and success, but I do not. Or, more accurately, we define “success” very differently. Maybe I do lack talent and maybe I will always work in service positions, and that’s okay too. Maybe my social skills are wonky, but maybe they will improve over time once I get past this feeling of inadequacy. And maybe someday I will belong somewhere — maybe I do already.

I want the ghosts of my past and all their negativity to go away, once and for all. I am not them, nor do I wish to be like them.

I have to let go of these chains. Honestly, I don’t entirely know how since I’ve been toting them for so long that they feel like a part of me.

For the record, I didn’t mind being an escort and actually got a good bit of satisfaction out of my job. Some clients weren’t good people at all, but I learned the best I could at avoiding those. What hurt me most was the treatment from people out in society and the things they’d say or do, trying to ridicule and ostracize me. But what troubled me at the core of it was this word “whore.” It’s a word I’ve heard way too many times since way back, and it seems to be along the lines of what the step-grandmother and whoever else expected of me all along. I remain angry about that, hurt. As if that’s all I am and all I’ll ever be, because they seemed to think so. To hell with them. To hell with this whole mind-fucking game of theirs. They don’t know how it feels, they don’t know who I am, and they didn’t really even understand what it was I was doing. In their depraved minds they probably conjured up so many nasty thoughts, but I took care of myself and dealt with decent clients for the most part who treated me with kindness, for which I am very grateful. Was more than I could ask of some of those who referred to themselves as my family.

Now I need to head to work.

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