So I lay there crying…
A lesson on the power and great responsibility of parental love.
So I lay there crying, trying to diffuse the immense weight of brokenness out of me. It wasn’t working, so I am proceeding to try to use words on clearing the path to a lighter, softer, more understanding me.
The crying was a soothing yet destructive way to connecting to the past. A ‘trying’ of sorts in burying through the half-messages of my mind, heart and soul. The source of my crying was my mother. The crying was also non-productive because I had spent years crying as a child in silence. It wasn’t allowed you see. Whenever the angry wrath, the dark fear and hurt of my mother’s pain was directed onto me I got scared. That is normal, of course. Fear is a responsible response. However, not in an alcoholic family. I had a very specific role. I was the savior, the peacekeeper. In the off chance that I would let my fear show, my mother would get more angry. To a certain extent she was justified. When I cried, my father got angry – at Her. He would drink and then he would get angry some more, physically. So the child became the gatekeeper. The child became responsible for everyone’s happiness. If I cried, she would hurt me and he would hurt her. If you are a reasonable adult reading this, you may shake your head or nod. Yes. That’s tough. Oh. I see.
Well you don’t. Unless you have lived in such a family structure you have no idea what is required to survive. Yes, the key word is survival. There is food, there is clothing. Why not be happy? Unfortunately, the soul and heart don’t work that way. They have a different set of needs and they are not as easily repaired as hungry stomachs and cold skin.
I have grown much because of these past hardships. I am grateful for such a deep, rich, spiritual path. The journey has always led me to a brighter, much more fulfilling place. After years of having to decipher every notion, or emotion, every trigger in a room, I have become a master reader. This has led me on the path of healing and is invaluable to me everyday.
So why the crying now?
Attended a family birthday lunch today. We were all having a mundane, uneventful time consuming food. Disjoint conversations are the norm, even long after the drama of childhood is gone. No one really listens to the others. Food is the most important you see. It is the staple that holds together the family, like glue. Afterward, I left to use the washroom. My mother panics whenever someone leaves a room. She couldn’t find me and when I returned she was already irritated. I mentioned that waiting a few minutes is acceptable when you can’t find someone in an apartment. Oops. That just pushed me out of the acceptable peacekeeper role in the family. Thus, I can no longer be accepted and I am fair game.
My mother began a rant on how we all hate her. –That’s fine you all just gang up on me and hate me, I’m the evil one – and so on. — Add whatever angry words you can think of here. — We tried to assuage her. This only makes it worse. Kindness to her is like poison. Her rant worsened and in the midst of her yelling, she made sure to let us all know that if we continue to keep ganging up on her, ‘we will be sorry tomorrow’ WFT??? What parent does that? I mean I was already on edge and now this.
In true dysfunctional form, this was the perfect opportunity for my mom to get my birthday present and as she’s handing it to me, she looks at me and says: ‘yeah, you can all hate me, hate me why don’t you, you stick together, hope you are happy’. —– Insert deep breath here. —— Thank God I know how to breathe properly. That is when I felt the first crack in my heart and soul. Breathing. Turning. Sitting. Then pretending. Opening present. Regaining my composure and adopting my peacekeeper role. Then quickly leaving, so I can feel my soul break down into a thousand little pieces and send tear drops to wash them away.
My message to parents:
- Your child is not YOURS.
- Your child is a gift that you need to cherish.
- Your child is not there to mother you or take care of you.
- Your child is not an extension of you.
- Your child just is. Please let him or her be.