Birthday Reflections

My birthday has come and gone. 26 started as good year for me. It was the year I got married. I should have taken it as a good sign when I went one birthday without bawling my eyes out. 27 was not such a lucky start.

My 27th birthday began horribly. I had to spend it with my angry husband and alienated biological father. My husband and I got into a HUGE HORRENDOUS argument over the fact that my useless father doesn’t have a vehicle. He had a 2 o’clock curfew for the half way house with no ride home.

Jake would not allow us to give him a ride because of the contents of his pockets. He had good reason to deny the request seeing as we never know what he might be carrying- but Jake has been pulled over exactly ONCE in the almost 4 years I’ve known him.  I figured it would be safe enough, so I argued with my husband.

I had a mental breakdown first thing in the morning since we were arguing about it as soon as we woke up. He screamed bloody murder at me in the car and told me he didn’t care about me. On my birthday at some point he inevitably suggests we shouldn’t be together anymore. He has a specialty in fucking the day up, always needing to bring me to hysterical tears.

I was bawling in the walgreens we went to pick a father’s day card from. My birthday was 2 days before Father’s Day. I was already late to my meeting with Johnny. That was traumatic in and of itself, standing in the walgreen’s greeting card aisle tears streaming down my face as my husband disrespects me and cusses me as I frantically search through the cards.

So many wrong cards for Johnny; Best Dad Ever, You’re My Super Hero, Thank You For Always Being There For Me Dad, I Love You. It’s more like-

Dear Biological Father;

I wish my mother had never told me about you. She kept the secret from me for over 20 years, what was the rest of my life? I would have preferred she took her secret to the grave. I don’t want to know you or love you. I wish you were a long-forgotten lover of hers. I wish you had remained a distant memory from her past. I wish you had never reconnected, or ever showed me any love. I regret knowing about you, and wish I could forget she ever told me about you. 

Be Gone.

On the way out of Walgreens, Jake threatened to throw me out of the car and leave me. He screamed more at me, and I bawled uncontrollably because he’s always threatening me with divorce, making me feel like I’m not wanted.

When we got to my mother’s house where Johnny was waiting, Jake went so far as to threaten to leave me alone. He got in the car and started it up. I stayed standing on the porch in front of the front door with my heart in my throat from my nervous breakdown and the stress of seeing my father for the first time in two years, before I collapsed into tears out of sight of the front window and by my mother’s front yard fence.

There were so many feelings mixed with Jake’s hurt he inflicted. I hadn’t seen my dad in two years on purpose. We hadn’t spoken, and I felt wretchedly guilty about shutting him out of my life. I felt ashamed of myself. I was scared to look him in the eyes. I was afraid he’d look at me with an angry or injured expression, and I felt like I couldn’t escape.

Instead he held me non-judgmentally while Jake was making me cry. His embrace was so warm and sincere I definitely felt comforted from my earlier breakdown. I cried in his arms, but I think he thought I was emotionally charged from seeing him again, which I was partly. It felt good to be forgiven without having to ask.

I hate him for loving me the way I want to be loved. No one has loved me like him since my ex Elizabeth and my Grandma. He doesn’t believe I can do anything wrong. I am golden to him, and it’s a fucking crying shame to be so revered by someone you cannot even bare to speak with.

It feels wretched to me, to crave his perception of me and his love, but to not be able to welcome him into my life. I feel like me and my parents are standing on two different sides of a canyon, I can’t love them even when I try.

If I want Johnny’s good, I have to accept his bad, and I won’t. I can’t. So if I can’t stomach his bad, I don’t deserve his good. You can’t pick and choose what you want from a person, you get all of them or nothing. And with Johnny, I find myself wondering how safe nothing is.

Is it worth this empty feeling inside?

 

Addictions and What Like

Image result for shameless season 2

Jake and I have been watching the show Shameless on Netflix lately. At first, I found the show to be entertaining- somehow making light of alcoholism and the myriad of other dysfunctions that are going on in the show. It made it seem funny somehow, when really it is just so fucking overwhelming.

The last episode that we watched together, I found my anxiety spiking. When I talked to my friend Latta about the show he told me the show actually stressed him out to watch and suddenly I felt the same way. The episode hit a little too close to home.

Frank the protagonist’s mother gets out of jail. She has been serving a 12 year stretch for meth and drug charges, been released on medical leave an old mean woman. Frank hates her as much as she bullies him and makes him take care of her personal hygiene and the like when she gets out. She’s old and decrepit and it is stated that she should be in a hospice.

She comes into some money that she exhorts out of her old business partner. Having been missing from her grandchildren’s lives growing up, she starts buying them gifts which wins her their affections. The two youngest children get spoiled and love her for it. She takes the youngest kid Carl and decides “let’s teach you a skill.”

In which she meant she was going to teach him how to make a meth lab. -___- In their attempts to get things started, the lab blows up and Fiona the oldest daughter and caregiver of the family banishes Frank’s mother from their home.

Frank’s mother is dying of pancreatic cancer. Frank responds to this by stealing her pain medication and disappearing. He leaves his mother with his girlfriend, Sheila. Sheila has publicly gone on record stating how much she hates this woman, yet in the face of her disease she starts to soften towards the older lady. With the help of her daughter’s ex, she takes care of Frank’s mom until she expressed the desire to kill herself.

Fiona the caregiver had out Frank’s mother in time out, she said. The kids weren’t allowed to go and see her. The grandma is mad that the children don’t come to see her. It seems like she is shameless like the show suggests because she doesn’t seem to think anything of her behavior; i.e. nearly getting a 10 year old killed in a meth lab explosion.

She doesn’t have any reason to live, no one wants her. Her son (Frank) hates her and doesn’t want to take care of her. Her grandchildren aren’t allowed to see her. She is already in a lot of pain. She asks Sheila to help her end her life, and Sheila obliges.

I had to change to something else to watch after that episode. The way the Grandma felt and the pity I felt for her unsettled me so much. It made me think about my own mother, a guilty feeling curling in my gut.

I never see my mother if I can help it. Her addiction and the people she spends time with make me stay away. I don’t feel safe when I go to her house, my childhood home. She must feel as lonely as the Grandma did, and it hurts me to think. She makes me stay away, she could be different, but she won’t be. I hate having to draw the line and never see her. Our family was never like that, and yet here I am. Alienating myself from her, because it’s easier than watching her suffer.

She suffers and there’s nothing I can do to change her behavior. She has to make the decision, but she hasn’t. She makes me stay away. She doesn’t want me around, or she would change. I know it’s impossible… I couldn’t do anything for Joshua either. They have to make these decisions on their own, and mom isn’t ready to. I can’t make her get a job, I can’t make her stop.

I want to be around her. I want not to be stressed out every time she calls asking for something. I want to be able to talk to her without feeling upset. She makes me feel so guilty, like if I could love her harder it would make a difference. But it wouldn’t, and it’s a hard pill for me to swallow. She keeps me away. I hate her for it. But they do say hate is love twisted, it’s that depth of feeling I can’t escape. I wouldn’t want to escape, I just wish she could make things easier. I wish loving her wasn’t so hard.

Loving my father is complicated, too. I value his love, but I hate his lifestyle. I can’t be around or even talk to him. He’s been living in a half way house and he and my mother have reconnected again. She gets to spend a few hours a day with him. And are they looking for a job for him to maintain his status at the half way house? No sireebob. (Who was surprised by that?)

As much as I dislike my father, I’m happy my mom is happy. They are a stupid couple that makes no sense. They both have too much pride to be together. They’re both too head strong. For their relationship to work properly, they’d both have to be different people. I don’t know how, but they somehow make it work even though they’re fighting all the time. They have a very on-again-off-again kind of relationship. It’s hard for me to keep up.

I am dreading December. My dad will get out of the half way house around then, and come back to live with my mom. They are talking about getting married. I would be thrilled if my mother got married, as much as I don’t like him. He loves me, maybe he’ll grow on me. Then she would be his problem. I never know what to do about them, besides hold them at arm’s length.