Counting to ten. It is a tool that I have used over the years to not lose my temper. To gain a few seconds to regroup. Sometimes I have to repeat the practice over and over again just to prevent myself from saying something in order not to blast someone to smithereens verbally. Counting....
Sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn't. Sometimes it gives me a second to calm myself down and refine what I want to say to be something a little less cruel. My mouth can be heartless. My words can really cut. It seems that the more personal the subject matter is the deeper the wound, the deeper the words cut.
I am really frustrated specifically about the dynamics in my family today. I am not speaking of "my" family - my sons and myself, I am speaking of the family that made me and created me, the sperm and the egg. I wonder how I have made it to this point without losing my mind completely or just running far, far away.
I wonder how it can be so easy for a mother to be so cold and heartless. A trait I share with her, but one which I try, try, try not to have. Believe me, there was a time when I was like her naturally. I choose not to be and still do. I fight with myself over and over again when I have those bad moments, when I lose the battle. I am a harsh judge. Forgiveness of myself is difficult. I get angry more at the slip ups that I should prevent. I have work to do.
My father, oh, my dear old dad. Perhaps Mom was right. All the time and hours and pain I endured because I chose to love you and miss you and wait for you to return. Never returning for me. Yet, coming back and giving me a minute here or there when you had time because we all know where your priorities are and they are not on your family, not your blood family. Your street family is where it is at for you. Always choosing the losers that want to and do use you and spit you out whom you run back to for more. Always expecting me to be there no matter what overlooking it all - unaware.
Expecting me to be your daughter, your mother, your friend. Never being my father. Never understanding the choices I made and the choices you made. Never being a Dad. Allowing abuse, neglect, rape and violations and reacting not at all. No action.
Acceptance - choosing the violators and rapists. Never understanding how you turned the knife when you took no action. How I could not tell because I was with you my parent who never had my back. Choosing instead to tell more lies. I was taught manners and right and wrong. Lying was never acceptable. How can you teach someone not to be what you are?
You blame Vietnam for your shortcomings. 28 days in the jungle really took its toll. When I was born and you had to come home for a double funeral I wish I had died at times. Maybe deep down I wish that you had died. It may have been easier to make the right choices, to walk away from you like you walked away from us. I wish I could be like my brother and forget I have a father.
I believe in love but I am learning the difference between good love and bad love. Tainted and poisoned I have been drinking from that cup. It is difficult for me to accept pure and clean, healthy love because of the cup I have been drinking from, the eyes I see it through, the feelings associated with love = pain, hurt and betrayal. Do you not understand? Do you not see?
I am the "good daughter" until I react too strongly to your careless, thoughtless, uncaring. How can a reaction be too strong when it is not enough? Never enough. Never getting through. I will be the cruel one as always, whether or not I am being cruel. I will be the one who doesn't behave properly. Accept the blame, walk away. Live to fight another day. I am tired of the game. Tired of the fight. Tired of the pain. I can't do it anymore.
More guilt for me. Never free. Always bad, wrong and mean, crazy, stupid. Never free of the labels which bind me. Mean, heartless, uncaring, cold. Never free. Truth - sad, angry, alone, crying silent tears, screaming silent screams which only my dogs can hear. Kisses from them as I cry silently into their warm, soft fur, love and acceptance. They nestle closer, never wanting me to be alone and scared and sad, knowing with their animal instincts when I need pets and love. Protective.
I can't be there for people who walk on me, expect me to be the answer, the savior. I am a weak lowly woman. I cannot be strength for people who don't even try. I can't be your life preserver when I am drowning myself!
I can put on my smile, wipe the tears from my eyes, cover up my pain and build yet another wall to replace the five I have torn down - retreat, tread more softly through forest into the clearing field of light lay in the field of flowers and bask in the sun alone, always, alone.