Its been some time I have been here… and I apologize I haven’t been more helpful. I had to pull myself together again.
But this is long and its more of a confession to pull my thoughts together.
The truth is; I am a monster and I am so relieved to finally see it. There was a time where I thought I was strong, a perfectionist, a helpful hand, a just person. How wrong I was. Like I had mentioned before, I was raised to try to be perfect all the time. Friends, school, activities and so on. Eventually when I started feeling my own pressure against my own self, I started to crumble. I had to find problems, I had to solve them. I had to constantly FIX things. And now I see it so clearly, how much pressure I would put myself through. And even worse, much worse: the pressure I put in people. You see, eventually when you try to always be so good at everything, nothing else is good enough. Its like knowing what your friend needs and then berating her until she feels worthless. And even if you do end up helping her, it came at such a cost of self confidence all you did was make things worse.
That’s just an example. I remember also receiving a 97% score on an exam and call myself stupid when a friend who got 87% was next to me. How arrogant I must have looked. Meanwhile, deep inside I am happy for her…it never meant I was smarter than her, just more ambitious. That’s another example. But I can tell what type of monster I am.
When I was a kid, I would buy my mother gifts constantly. I’d always match my mood to hers, happy or sad or angry. Because if I didn’t, it would turn her against me. I’d listen to her endless stories and advice about how unhappy she is with my dad and to never marry a man like him. Often, he wouldn’t be angry at me if it weren’t for her telling him to when I was a child.
Once upon a time she told me: A mother’s love is not unconditional. Because I wouldn’t apologize.
Once upon a time I told my friend: I’d be fine if you never wanted to be friends again. Because she lied to me.
Do you see what I see? Sure, the situations were different. But my worst fear was beginning; I was beginning to be like my mother. Until I couldn’t keep up with my own image of being right all the time. I can’t be always right because I am not. And I can’t pretend to be when I am not. I can’t get mad at people or the world because I can’t solve their problems. Why hate the world because you cant fix it? Why give up on it or blame others?
Tonight, something wonderful happened: she called me a monster and called me cruel and for the first time I was ok with it. (The story is long. But the gist would be that : her friend told me something and I assumed that she had told her too. And so I didn’t tell her. ( its her friend right? Not mine?) but she told me I was cruel for not telling her and that I planned it not to tell her. I cleared that air right away and told her I thought she already knew. Then I told her okay I will tell you whatever she tells me from now on. Then she started with how since I was little I was cruel to her and so on.)
I guess its better than that time she called me a cow? But it ends with me, my mother’s daughter. I slowly took all she had taught me about relationships and applied it to my own and to me. How could I be so blind? She taught me I had to earn her love and in return I thought people had to “earn” it… climb over the wall and show me I could trust them.
For the first time in a long time. I didn’t seek to justify myself, to wage war on her or to even blame the world…. Or even myself. That’s not the answer, is it? The answer is to stop and think things through. I need to be careful from now on, I need to cultivate my relationships and my life in a delicate way. I have to stop getting angry at the world for not always fixing itself… and I have to stop getting angry at myself for not always being right, or the best or working harder or knowing best for someone.
I won’t do this anymore. I can’t be like her with a husband who hates her and a daughter who she practically is estranged to. My aunts on her side can ignore me, I can understand how she would plant the fear in them. Me or her. Pick a side. I won’t blame them. I won’t blame my dad either. Nor myself. And believe it or not, her either. Maybe she was like me. Maybe she had someone teach her this way to.
On a side note, if you made it this far: take care of yourself. You can’t fix or do anything unless you show yourself the same kindness you show to others. And maybe showing yourself kindness is the first step to showing kindness to others too… here’s something I hope…