The times where Mother Nature comes and shoves a whole lot of reality in your face, in an attempt to test how strong you really are. I truly believe that a person can measure their inner strength in the worst of times. This has become my life as of late.
I have to be honest; it’s hard, it really is. To get out of bed and function every day. There are times when I can’t even muster up the energy to change out of my pajamas; and others when I can’t bring myself to stare at the same four walls another moment. All for problems which are out of my control.
My mother’s going through a rough time right now. After marrying young and being in a plethora of failed relationships, she’s struggling to find her image. At forty, she’s dealing with the same problems that I am; which is making it unbearable for me. Growing up, we were always so close…but at times, I find myself resenting her for being so selfish. In the times when I need her the most, I feel like she’s focused solely on herself and her problems. Ones, which I feel like she could have prevented, but because she was so complacent, she just let them happen anyway. I feel like she doesn’t comprehend that her decisions brought us to where we are today; and the fact that she won’t take responsibility for them makes it that much worse. My step-father is the same way. After a ten year relationship with my mother, I feel like he’s so wrapped up in being vindictive towards her, that he fails to see that it’s hurting our relationship as well. I can’t fathom in any way how two people can be so hateful towards one another, that they can’t just agree to disagree and walk away from it. More importantly, I can’t see how two people--who claim to “love” each other—can hurt each other so badly. It’s disheartening. And quite frankly, chips away at the faith I have in my own relationship.
On the other side, I have my in-laws and their struggle with alcoholism. I know it’s not my place to judge them, especially because it’s their life and their decisions that they have to live with, but that’s just it: we live with them. We share a tiny 1100-square foot home with two stubborn alcoholics. I call them “stubborn” because they refuse to admit that they have a problem. It’s the hardest thing to sit back and watch your family members do something so bad to themselves, but what hurts me the most is that it’s starting to take a toll on my two-year-old daughter and they don’t even have the capacity in their hearts to make a change for her well-being. I realize it’s an addiction, I do, I am nowhere near oblivious to the fact that it happens, but the Mama Wolf in me just feels like boiling over every time I hear them crack open a bottle. It’s gotten so terrible lately, that I hardly sleep anymore. I lag so much during the day because I hate living where I live. My heart sinks every time I have to yank my daughter out of her path to “Nana’s room”. She just doesn’t deserve it.
And I don’t think it’s fair to my husband, to come home after working ten hours a day, schooling for six, enduring an two-hour long drive, just to be riddled with slurred speech, endless phone calls and a very stressed out wife. It’s not our battle, so when it gets to the point where we’re fighting, something’s got to give. Many of you know that Papa and I virtually never fight. High school sweethearts, we were often criticized for being the “perfect couple” and endured a lot of hate from our friends who couldn’t make it work in their relationships. Fighting just isn’t us. Maybe a five-second spat here or there, but nothing serious. Nothing that would ever remotely come close to the big “D” word. Yet, here we are, throwing it around like it’s nothing. And for what? Everyone else’s issues? WHY?!
That’s why we’re trying to find a new path. We didn’t plan on having to cut our losses and move on, but it seems as though there’s no other way to get around it. I’m not sure if that means packing our stuff up, loading up the Vue and heading out on a whim or if it means that we’ll toughen up as much as possible, make ourselves scarce for the next three months; but I do know that something has to be done. Soon. Because I can’t sit back any longer and watch the days pass by, taking with it my faith and optimism. I just want to be happy again. Back to that place: a year ago. When Papa, Punky and I would wake up every morning, all smiles, ready to take on the world and make each moment count. So wrapped up in love, that hate couldn’t even be detected, even in the largest of amounts. Back to the day when we rolled around in the grass—carefree--knowing that things were going to be just fine. I know true and utter happiness is possible. I’ve seen it. I’ve felt it. I’ve loved it. But I just can’t seem to get back there. Not here. Not in this town. Not surrounded by so much negativity. I think that the best thing for me would be to take myself out of the equation entirely. I need to disappear; to stay focused on my little family and what truly matters most, them.
It’s really hard to express these feelings, since I try to keep them deep under wraps—because airing our dirty laundry is a big “no-no” in our relationship--but I feel like it’s essential for my own growth, to open up and be truthful. Because of that, I ask that you please don’t judge me. Trust me, I beat myself up enough as it is. What I do need is opinions. Insight from outside the box. I need to know that what I feel is normal. I need to know that I’m not alone in this. Because my shoulders are quickly giving out from all the weight.