Category Archives: Support

Merry-Go-Round

Remember when you were a kid and parks had merry-go-rounds? Your friends would dare you to hop on while another one would starting twirling you around and around and around until the world passed you by in a blur? Yeah, I remember those too. Those blessed, dizzy-making, accidentswaitingtohappen machines have all been removed from parks now likely because some parent, somewhere, was mad that their child didn’t come with the qualities of a rubber bouncy ball and hit the ground hard instead of bouncing.

Life is a lot like those crazy ass mery-go-rounds.  You hop off of one of those trips around the circle, dizzy as all hell, your world turned upside down and you have no clue how you’re going to walk one step forward, let alone walk for the rest of the day.  Some kids ignore the blanent obstable of the world spinning in their eyes and think, I got this! I’m gonna make a run for it.  They take off, make it all of a half of a step and crash onto their faces.  Other kids stop, take a breath, close their eyes and simply wait for the world to right itself and then take their step and carry on.  Blissfully unaffected by the stomach turning ride they’d just undertaken.

Can you guess which kid I was?  Yeah, patience never has been a virtue of mine.

I am teaching myself to resist the urge to just run head-long into the dizziness. I am encouraging myself to simply close my eyes, acknowledge the moment, remind myself that whatever situation I’m in, whatever I’m feeling isn’t permanent and if I just stop, experience the dizziness and wait, the world will be right when I open my eyes.  I am also teaching myself that I get to dictate when I’m ready to open my eyes.  No one else does.  I don’t need to explain how much time I need to stand there, I don’t need to explain why I need to stand there and I don’t need to adhere to anyone else’s timeline but my own.  I am allowing myself to experience my feelings, acknowledge them and take the time I need to take to get through it.

I am attempting to put this method of thinking into practice in many areas of my life.  Patience with myself.  Allowing myself to be perfectly imperfect.  Not searching for validation of what I’m feeling or the choices I make from other people.  Simply not searching for validation from anyone but myself.  I am practicing speaking good things about myself without having to caveat that with an explanation.  I am acknowledging my areas of weakness and attempting to accept them.  But more importantly, I am practicing being ok with all of this.

I am a good hearted person. Full stop.

I am an intelligent woman.  Full stop.

I have a quick wit.  Full stop.

I am unmotivated.  Full stop.

I am headstrong.  Full stop.

I am me.  Full stop.

 

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12 Weeks to Wellness

As you may have gathered, my overall wellness has been weighing heavily on my mind lately.  That’s mostly because I have very little wellness in my life these days and I really want to change that.  So, I’m changing it.  *nudge nudge* – see?  change?  it’s a theme in my life.

I am very fortunate in that my workplace offers several different wellness programs that are available free of charge to employees.  I simply couldn’t squander an opportunity like that.  So, I signed up for three programs.  The first one is a program called “12 Weeks to Wellness”, the second is one-on-one work with a dietician, the third on is called “Mindful Meditation”.  So far, the Mindful Meditation one is a bust because the counsellor is a flake BUT the other two are awesome.  So 2 out of 3 ain’t bad.

This is the first time I’ve really tried any programs like these so I wanted to document my progress and I figured here would be just as good a place as any.  My program will run from Feb 22 – May 16.  It’s fantastic timing because for me, Spring is a time of renewal, rejuvenation and life.

So let’s take stock of where I am today.  I got my blood panel done today, waiting on results for that.  I struggle to find the energy to just manage day-to-day life, my weight and diet need a complete overall.  I feel completely overwhelmed and at odds with myself.  I know that my emotional health, physical health, mental health and spiritual health all need to be worked on and I’m finally, finally taking the steps to do so.

This week’s chapter is called “Creating a Healthy Lifestyle for Weight Loss and Wellness”.  I like to add a bit to that and say “Creating a Healthy Lifestyle and Environment for Weight Loss and Wellness”.  I added the “Environment” because it’s something we tend to overlook.  Our surroundings, the things we hold on to, our habits; all of those things contribute to our day-to-day health.  So, I have taken these steps to make a healthier environment for myself:

  1. I wrote a reminder to myself on my bathroom mirror to remind myself of why I’m embarking on this journey, what I’m committing to and why it’s important.
  2. I deleted a ton of old facebook messages, blog posts, emails, letters, etc that were written to people that are no longer in my life.  I will likely re-write these as part of this wellness plan but I want them to come from a different place in my heart.
  3. I have shared my plan and journey with friends and family around me and that I know will support me.
  4. I have quit smoking (again).  Today is Day 10 with no cigarettes.
  5. I have reached out for help (outlined above).

I have started down the road to healthier living in the past but have never really stuck to it.  I think that’s because I wasn’t truly doing it for me.  I wasn’t ready.  I am ready now.  I am ready to take control of my life, let go of what’s burdening me, and give myself permission to live the best life for me.  I’ll try to blog each week about how it’s going, where I’m at and what I’m facing/ achieving and struggling with.

So…without further ado…let’s do this!

Wellness wooden sign on a beautiful day

Babble Brain: Journey to the Centre of the Universe…and my Heart

Over the last year or two, I have been intentionally trying to be a better, more understanding, more level-headed, more honest, more compassionate and overall better person. I haven’t always been great at doing that but I have certainly been doing better.

I made the decision to live my life differently because I felt gross about myself. In my heart of hearts I didn’t feel like I was being fair to my own self and that’s because I wasn’t. I was lying, cheating, laughing at consequences and it made me feel sick. It validated every bad thing people had called me over the years and I hated that. I hated feeling like my name and my character was no better than dirt. So I decided to start paying attention to the Universe around me and the heart in me. Trying to align the two. To my surprise, the lessons that I had balked at learning over the years were still lingering about, waiting to be learned. I chose to start learning them. I am so grateful to have made the right choice.

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There have been a few moments over the last little while where I was faced with the very change I’m talking about. I could choose the way I reacted/ responded to a situation and in those moments, I chose to react and behave very differently than I would have in the past. I am proud of those moments. Change takes an effort. Change takes patience. Change isn’t instant. Change is rewarding. Change makes it easier to sleep at night. The right changes bring you peace.

Change is a challenge because with change brings even MORE change. It’s never-ending. When you decide to make one small change in yourself, your heart, your life it ends up bringing about a few more small changes and then some more changes after that and then some more even after that until you end up almost not even

I had real fears about losing myself. Losing my edge, losing my funk, losing the very essence of me but what I’ve come to realize is that I haven’t actually been myself for a very, very long time. The good news?  I am slowly getting myself, my true self, back and it feels soooooo good! I am able to own my feelings, I am able to own my faults and for the first time in a long time, I feel like I can breathe. I don’t feel like I owe anyone anything. I am finally freeing myself of binds I tied a long time ago.

Through the first stages of my journey, I will admit I’ve lost a few people I considered loved ones along the way. At first that made me really angry, and truth be told, that anger is still there. It’s just not as intense as it was. I have had the opportunity to pause and examine those lost relationships and really identify if they are healthy and positive relationships or if they are unhealthy, one-sided relationships. And just as you would suspect they were unhealthy, one-sided relationships. As hard as it is to let people go, I’m learning that letting go is ok because a balance will be found. Just as I lost some relationships, I also rekindled and gained some. Luckily, having opened myself to the lessons of the Universe, I can approach these friendships and sisterhoods with my heart boundaries in place. And that is more freeing than I could imagine.

This first leg of my journey has taken quite some time to get rolling but it’s in full swing and I’m loving it. I can feel my soul starting to ache for the next step. Maybe its building lost esteem, maybe its learning to love myself again, I have no idea. I do know that I am excited to see what it brings.

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Ohana

I don’t come from a large family or a particularly close family so I’ve always envied large families and ones that are super close. It’s always been something I wish I had but figured I wouldn’t ever really have. I mean most of my family lives half a world away and it’s fragmented at best so I came to accept that I just wouldn’t ever have that big, fun, family that I had always dreamed of. Then I married my husband. He has his own children which gave us an instantly larger family and he has a brother who’s married with children so I thought YES! I will finally have the large, close knit family I had always wanted. So I worked. And worked, and worked, and worked. I worked at being accepted, at being loved by that extended family, at pulling together the family I had always hoped for and for a time, a very short time, I thought we had actually overcome all the differences, all the troubles, all the drama of years past and we were finally a “family”.

Boy was I wrong. I’ve mentioned how wrong I can be, right?

I have come to the realization that it was all just a big delusion on my part. That “close-knit” family I had come to be so proud of was really all in my head. Over the years, we would host big family dinners and celebrate as a family but for the first time, I’m realizing that it was always me to initiate those get togethers. We would constantly extend invites to outings, picnics, backyard BBQ’s, dinners, movies, whatever and there would always be an excuse or a reason that they wouldn’t be able to come. We would share our alcohol, food, work, time, pay for our niece, etc but those favours were never returned. As a matter of fact, all we’ve ever been accused of is not helping enough.

For a short time, I felt like I had a brother close to me but it was just another delusion. I was a time-filler. Someone to go for coffee with and, most times, pay for it. My sister-in-law once said to me, that she was tired of being the one to pursue a relationship with someone. That relationships were two-way streets and it felt like she was always the one working. Funny, I’ve always been the one working on a relationship with her. Clearly I missed the message. I am disposable to both of these people. That became so clear when I finally, for once, told the truth. I knew that there were some shady things happening and I just couldn’t watch the games that were being played around me. I sought counsel of many people about what they would do and the vote was split. Some said tell, others said don’t. I care about the person being hurt. I care about the person doing the hurting. So I decided that if I was asked, I wouldn’t lie. And I didn’t. Holy backlash batman!

The whole situation makes me so sad. I’ve tried to be angry but I’m not. I’m just sad. These realizations are always the hardest. It is hard to realize that you don’t mean much to someone, especially when you’ve held that person, or in this case people, in such high regard.

The great thing about realizing who you mean little to, is you also start to realize who you mean a lot to. I’ve been so focussed on making the family I married into work that I lost sight of the family that I actually built. I have really amazing friends, many of whom I consider family. I was able to realize that I’d really neglected relationships with people who mean the world to me and I’m so thankful that I’ve had the opportunity to start rebuilding them. People who want me around simply because they like who I am and enjoy spending time with me.

At the end of it all, life is just teaching me the true definition of “family”.

ohana-means-family

Head Housekeeping

I don’t know how many times I’ve typed a sentence only to lay on the backspace button and forever erase what I’d just written. Heck, I just did it five times. Every time I open this page I expect some rush of wisdom or witty banter to flow from my thoughts to my fingers and finally into the interwebz that will reap hoardes of viewers and build a healthy following of eager listeners. (I have mentioned my completely unrealistic expectations, right?) And every time I open this page and start typing, I get discouraged by the fact that I erase what I start to say a bunch of times before I actually start getting my thoughts out.

What does that say to me? I have ridiculous expectations and my brain is scattered. I need to start doing a little internal spring cleaning. Get my thoughts out. Get the stuff that keeps rolling around and around and around in my head, OUT! I need to finally embark on the next leg of my healing journey and that is exactly what I’m going to do.

As you may, or may not gathered, I am overweight…like way overweight. No, scratch that. I’m fuggin fat. And I’m sick of it so what do I do? I start planning. Plan, plan, plan and then do a little of the do-ing and then get pissed off because my plans are taking too long (I wasn’t joking about those expectations of mine) and then I self-sabotage and then BOOM! Back to square one. Yes, I do this often. Yes, I know what the definition of insane is. This time, I’m going to do things a little differently. See? Told you I know I’m being insane. This time, I’m not going to focus on my weight or my food or my exercise. This time, I’m going to focus on doing a little head housekeeping. I’m going to try and get my thoughts calmed down, my spirits lifted and remember that I am me. I am going to teach myself how to calm my expectations a little bit. I am going to be patient with myself. I am going to learn what works for me and my body. I am going to learn how to deal with my stress and focus on the undercurrents that may be leading to my sabotage. I know how to eat healthy, I know how to track my food and I know how to exercise. Clearly, there is more going on here than just that. I am holding onto this weight either literally or figuratively or both but regardless of what it is, I am going to get to the bottom of it. Starting now.

Goals for this week:

1) Do one meditation
2) Write at least 3 blog posts or journal entries
3) Find one positive thing about each day to celebrate and post on my facebook status (keeps me real, yo)

Good goals, right? I think so!

Nailing it
Nailing it

Come as you are…

“Come as you are, as you were,
As I want you to be
As a friend, as a friend, as an old enemy.
Take your time, hurry up
The choice is yours, don’t be late.”

Ahh…the lyrics that shapped my early teenaged years. Good ole Nirvana. I can distinctly remember 13 year old me talking about how I could relate to the lyrics because I had grown so much over the years (yes, that was written while rolling my eyes). Boy do I wish I could go back and smack 13 year old me up side the head.

Certain things have been happening in my life that have really made me look at who I am and who’ve I’ve become. I spout off about the stories of who I used to be and the things I used to do but I rarely talk about who I am and I’ve come up with a theory on why. Basically, the person I used to be is familiar and I know what to expect when I behave in those ways but this new, more honest version of me is scary as hell.

The person I used to be smoked weed, got drunk, screwed around, lied, was manipulative, usually had an alterior motive but that is who I used to be. I didn’t really give a shit about anyone but myself. If I spoke up about something, it’s because I stood to gain soemthing. If I wanted to get high, get drunk, and/or have sex I’d just call up whoever would be willing and go to ‘er, the consequences never really mattered.

That’s all changed. I like to pin point my own extra marital affair as the piviotal point of change but I think it’s been happening for a long time before that, maybe I just started paying attention after that last encounter. Recently, I was faced with a decision to lie or tell the truth. Lying would have been so much easier, in the short term anyway. I could have preserved one relationship and stalled the strain on another but in the moment when I had the choice, I chose to tell the truth. I’ve asked myself why so many times in the past while because that’s not what I’d normally do. I’m glad I’ve had the wherewithall to question the why because I’ve been pleasantly surprised by my answers.

First, I’ve had the awesome opportunity to realize and celebrate the fact that my values and moral compass have shifted. I no longer identify with being a “cheater” or “cheap” or “easy” or “a homewrecker”. That’s just not who I am anymore. I’ve made peace with that part of me and it feels fantastic. I find myself getting defensive when someone says “once a cheater, always a cheater” because that’s not true, I am no longer a cheater nor will I ever be again.

I also don’t identify with being a liar. I am not completely innocent when it comes to lying and I can’t say I won’t tell a lie in the future but what I can tell you is that it doesn’t feel good when I do it. I feel the weight of guilt, frustration, worry and general distaste. In that moment of being able to chose, and knowing what the consequences of my choice were, I finally chose what was best for me. For my psyche. I may never repair those relationships and that’s a consequence of the situation but at least I know that I was honest and I’m not hiding anything. I’m not keeping secrets or protecting lies. I am free of that and that freedom is delicious.

Finally, I’ve been taking a good long look at why I’m drinking and why I have started smoking pot again *gasp* and really, the question there is why am I chasing that dragon? Why am I feeling the need to live a life that’s not a sober one and again, I think it’s to get away from facing up to what I already know. Things are different now. Pot is not my deal and when I think about hiding it from my kids and being paranoid that I’m going to get “caught”, it is clear to me that my conscience already knows what my brain has been slow in realizing. It’s just not for me. Drinking makes me sick and I do and say stupid things when I’m drunk. It’s also not for me. I have to be ready to let that go. I have to learn to be comfortable and confident in my sober skin and that’s what I’m going to learn to do. I want a healthy life and not one that is foggy and half-remembered.

Finally, I have been examining the relationships I have in my life and I’ve started to question why I’ve prioritized some unhealhty, one-sided relationships over ones that I felt comfortable in. I have distanced myself from so many of my friends over the last few years and I am ashamed of that. I have a lot of fence mending to do and hopefully those fences are strong enough to be mended. I have been chasing people who couldn’t give a damn if I was in their lives or not, bending over backward, trying to be everything to everyone and I have forgotten that to a handful of people I am enough for them without even having to try.

I am so blessed to have found the person that I love completely. I am so blessed to have healthy, interested, good people as children. I am blessed to have fences that need mending. I am blessed that I realized it before it was too late.

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Coming Home

One morning I woke up, decided to don my big-girl panties, pack my suitcase and take my new, enlightened self to a different venue.  Like so many leaving home for the first time, I thought I can do this, I can find a new space and make it my own but like many of us, there never really is any place quite like home.  That’s how I feel about this blog.

I started a new blog, I started a twitter, I started all of it with the intentions of tapping back into my creative self and pouring out one enlightened post after another but you know what they say about good intentions right? 

I thought making the decision to re-open Random Babble would be easy but it really wasn’t.  I found myself staring at the link to my dashboard and thinking “If only I could post…” until my better sense (she can be a little slow on the uptake folks) kicked some sense into my brain and replied with “why the hell can’t you?”  I didn’t have a good answer. Yes, I answer myself.

Luckily, deciding to post on an old blog is nothing like going home.  For starters, you can actually do it.  It doesn’t feel weird.  I don’t feel misplaced or like a guest.  I feel exactly how I should – like I want to write again.

 coming home logo 1

Up, Up and Away…

This has become a mantra for me This has become a mantra for me

I started this blog many years ago with great intentions of becoming a “real” blogger. You know, one that develops a loyal following and has fans waiting in the wings. Yeah, my ego may have been slightly larger than my head. And by slightly I mean freaking huge. But whatevs.

In the early months, I made lists of the topics I was going to cover. Political topics, hot-button topic, and parenting issues all made the roster but very few made the blog. This blog became a place for me to write about and work through very personal issues in my life. I’ve had some really great feedback from the few people who do read my posts and I’ve had some very ugly things thrown at me by trolls who need a hobby. Looking back now, I see this as a stepping stone onto the journey I have been on.

Looking at this blog now I see so much of it that represents where I used to be. I used to trend to the negative. I used to be bitter. I used to look at the world through lenses coloured with anger, hate, hurt and sarcasm. I used to talk about all the things I used to be instead of really focussing on what I am, who I’m becoming and who I want to be. (Yes, I realize the irony of doing that exact thing right now). I used to think of myself as broken.

I am no longer those things. I am being true to myself. I am learning my passions. I am terrified of this journey. I am terrified of being vulernable. I am terrified of being weak. I am terrified of reaching out to people and letting them in. I am terrified of failing. I am excited to be on this journey. I am proud of the accomplishments I’ve made so far. I am proud that I continually challenge myself and am putting a voice to my insecurities. I am glad that I have acknowledged my weaknesses and am learning to embrace them. I am fixing myself.

I have been cleansing my life of my old ways. Slowly but surely. Old habits, old thought patterns, old text messages, old contacts, and old diary pages. It’s now time to put this blog to rest, not just change the template or the title or the layout but really close this chapter and move on.

So, until next time folks!

So long and farewell

Eager Easter

Easter is right around the corner and lots of folks are focussed on the Bunny, celebratory dinners and the inevitable chocolate hangover.  Other folks are also focussed on the religious aspect of Easter, the death and resurrection of Jesus. 

Over the years I haven’t put much thought into the whole death and resurrection bit.  I’ve gone to Church, I understand what it all means but I’ve never really thought about it.  I’m talking in a how-does-this-relate-to-me kind of way.  Now I’m starting to think about it.

This time last year, I was still deep in the ditch I had dug for myself, waivering between anger, sadness, embarassment, guilt and a myrid of other emotions.  I was walking the thin line of choice and change.  I expected that change to occur immediately but I was wrong.  So very, very wrong.

The person I was compared to the person I am is like comparing apples to oranges.  There are similarities, for sure. Both are round, both are fruits, both grow on trees, they both have seeds, they come in a variety of types and flavor profiles…really the similarities between apples and oranges are greater than one thinks; however, there are many differences as well.  They’re just not a subtle.

My differences are subtle.  I am blessed with the opportunity to practice these differences and I’m blessed to be able to actually see the change.  That doesn’t mean the same old girl isn’t kicking around in this body, it just means how she’s interacting with the world and the people in it is a little different.  I’m grateful for each new encounter, I’m grateful for each opportunity to be a little more positive, I’m grateful to have the strength to change and I’m grateful for the set backs I’m sure to encounter.  I’m grateful that the people in my life are starting to see and trust in the changes I’ve made and I’m grateful they are all so supportive of who I am. 

I totally get the death and resurrection thing now.  Maybe I just never realized that it’s not always physical.

“…May the past be the sound
Of your feet on the ground
Carry on…”

Happy Easter Everyone. 

 

Hoppy Easter

Closure Exposure

Closure Disclaimer:

I was sent a “closure” email recently and I’ve contemplated responding to it but haven’t. That being said, I do need to have my say.  To be able to get these words out.  Somewhere.  So, like all things, I turned to my little web-corner and I’ve decided to have my say here.  These are my words.  My feelings.  My thoughts and my opinions.  If you don’t want to hear it or read it, please close your browser now. 

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Dear So-and-So,

I recevied your “closure” email but quite frankly, I don’t care if you have “closure”  or not.  So the next time you feel inspired to write a piece of hate mail, leave me out of it.  I am tired of hearing the same old hashed-out insults and complaints.  I wanted to reply but, as you will soon find out, I have nothing nice to say to you.  That being said, I do need some closure for my own self so that I finally start the healing of this hurt. 

Everytime I start to think about what to write, I get so exasperated I can barely think. Your behaviour and attitude is beyond comprehension.  Your words are contradictory, your behaviour is erradic and overall this whole situation is nonsensical. 

Let me start by saying I am furious with you and the things said below come from a place of bitterness, disappointment, and embarassment. I am downright incensed with the person you’ve grown into and the behaviour you’ve demonstrated and I need to get this out. I always thought you were better than any of this but I was so wrong.  You are fake.  You are a liar.  You are entitled. You are destructive and you are hurtful.  You spew hate and hurt toward this family yet you act as if you are the “hurt” one.  Stop playing the victim and start owning up to your own behaviour.  You haven’t grown, you haven’t changed, you haven’t done one goddamn thing you preach about yet you expect praise because you’re going to school?  Let me tell you girl, it’s going to take a helluva lot more than a college diploma before I believe one ounce of breath that leaves your body.

In your email, you thanked me for being a parent to you when neither of your bio-parents were able.  You know, it may have meant something to me if you hadn’t spent the rest of your time bashing my character.  I’m not sure who you think you are but until you are faced with having to make the same decisions, you are unqualified to judge my actions and my decisions.  Being your parent was hellish at times.  I spent more hours crying about, worrying over, and double guessing my decisions than any one person should have.  I spent my early 20’s dealing with your shitty attitude and behaviour and oh look, now spending my early 30’s doing exactly the same thing.

Your words, your behaviour, your actions have caused me more hurt in my life than anything else.  That’s because they used to mean something to me.  Your opinion of me, meant something.  That’s starting to change.  See, all those years I’d find little notes about you wishing your Dad would leave me, all those years where you felt it necessary to impart your opinion on our relationship, all the times you’ve yelled, screamed, pitched fits about how crappy your life was are taking their toll. 

You’ve always made your opinion of your Dad’s and my relationship known and that obviously isn’t about to change.  My response to that is “Butt Out”.  It is none of your business.  My relationship with your Dad is between us.  Keep it to yourself.  In my opinion, you would be lucky to find someone as kind, caring, loving and considerate as your Dad. 

Another one of your many complaints is that your Dad chose me over you but you’ve failed to explain exactly how he’s done that.   It’s time to lay that to rest.  It’s obvious your Dad loves you.  It’s obvious he’s been there for you, there were times when he could have been there more but overall, I’d say he’s been pretty involved in your life.  I challenge you to do the math of how many years you’ve lived with your Dad, spent weekends with your Dad and then talk to me about how he was never there or chose someone else.  Until you can come up with compelling facts, backed up by people other than just your Mother’s Camp, your complaints fall on deaf ears.

The thing that has bothered me the most in all of this is how you are constantly slinging mud at your Dad.  You know, if he ever said the things to you that you’ve been saying to him, you would go on the war path like no one has ever seen.  It would serve to validate every little real or imagined injustice you have felt through your life.  You would use it against him for all time and show every person how awful and mean your Dad is.  You know, people are in your life for a short period of time and one day, you will miss your Dad.  One day, you may regret the things you’ve said to him.  One day, your Dad will be gone and I sincerely hope that regret weighs heavy in your heart and on your soul. 

I am constantly amazed at how you expect others to accept you, believe in you and look past your mistakes but you aren’t willing to give the same consideration to other people.  We’ve apologized for our parenting mistakes time and time again but that’s simply not good enough for you.  I have a news flash for you – we are people too. 

The bitter-hearted part of me sometimes wishes I could go back and take back every birthday party, every special holiday, every hug, every inside joke, every new anything and the shopping splurges, every time I did put you before my own children, every time I referenced you as my own daughter, every Saturday morning family cuddle, take the flower that represents you off of my body, basically take back every little piece of me I’ve ever given you. That is pure anger talking and it’s going to take time for me to work through that.

Beyond the bitterness and anger, beyond the hurt and brokenheart, this has made me stronger.  In the past, I would have bottled everything up inside.  The end result of that being an explosive response when I just couldn’t take anymore.  Now, I’m reaching out to people in my life and it’s a really good feeling.  I have kind, considerate folks who are willing to listen to me.  They help me talk through the hurt and the pain and support me in my growth.  It gives me renewed strength and energy to face the next time you enter my life.  It is a great feeling and I’m happy that I’m able to establish stronger relationships and really value them as they should be.  Our family is more honest and supportive of one another.  We are stronger because of this and are re-evaluating relationships we may have otherwise overlooked. 

Over the years we have included you in every family gathering, every family function, worked so hard to make you feel important, to make you feel loved and valued and at the end of the day, it was all superficial.  We never meant anything to you.  You keep saying “we aren’t your real family” over and over and for the longest time I didn’t want to believe it but that’s probably the only truthful thing you’ve said. 

We aren’t your real family.  To you, we never were.  It sucks for all of us because to us, it was very real.