Monthly Archives: December 2015

Let the past be

Let the past be. You can’t change it, no matter how hard you try. It’s there. And it’s not going anywhere. And it’s not going to change. And I wish it would.

I wish I could go back and fix things. Or tell myself that things would be ok when I got older, that the pain that I was feeling in that momembt would pass and I would be stronger for it if I would let it go instead of harboring it. Instead, I locked it away with everything else. Trapped in my heart with every good memory too.

The past has a funny way of creeping up on you when you least expect it. Like when you finally say that you’re letting something -or someone- go, and you don’t think about them for a very long time, fate has a way of pushing them to the forefront of your mind. Memories come flooding back. And all that pain that you locked away and stored comes pouring out.

I’ve written about it before…And I’m sure I’ll write about it again at some point too, but the biggest obstacle that I have had to overcome in my life is Donna. In earlier posts I just called her Bitch. I did it to not give her a name, for anonymity, for myself included, but I’ve grown. So she has a name again.

On Christmas, we received the news that my Papa died. He was elderly -85 years old. He was a mean man when I was growing up. Cruel even. He was mean to my Granny. I watched him push her down in their garden one day during an argument -I never liked him after that day. But when I was younger, much younger, he was amazing. We had cookouts where the whole family would gather. There was live music provided by my Papa and his fiddle and his brothers (I think?). It was a grand time. Now, when I got older and started to develop (as young girls do) he took notice. I remember one day being asked to go to Granny and Papa’s to get lemons, Donna was making a pie, so I went. Well, what we didn’t know what that he was there alone. I remember him giving me what I needed, but when I went to leave he told me to give him a hug, which I did. His hands fell on my butt. It made me uncomfortable. So I tried to leave, but his grip tightened, so I turned around. Well, his hands found my breasts. I ran after that. And I told. And I wasn’t allowed to be alone with him after that. It wasn’t until many years later, that we actually became pretty good friends. We would just sit and talk. And I did love him. He was one of my favorite Keene’s to be with. And then life happened. I moved away and I didn’t get to see him much. But when I did, I always made a point to spend some time with him. Hugging him, talking to him. Just enjoying his company. And then he died. And I didn’t really get to say good bye.

Where was I going with this?

Anyhow, this brings up dealing with Donna. Why? Because she has told so many lies and she’s all over Facebook about his death. It’s nasty business. She told me , well since I can remember that she hated him. And I don’t know if they ever really made it right. I mean, I hope they did. But I don’t know.

Having to have anything to do with that part of the twisted history is hard. Too many lies and shadows are there and I can’t determine what is real or not real. Because of Donna.

I think we’ve talked about this before, right? I was adopted by Donna when I was 2. I have the paperwork, though because of issues with the social security administration I have questions on the legality of those papers. My mom, my real mom was there the entire time. So anyhow, Donna adopted me and told everyone I was her kid. There are pictures that I don’t understand because they are of her in the hospital “having” me -but she didn’t give birth to me, so I don’t think those are real. Things weren’t easy being her child. She had high expectations. Which I guess that’s pretty normal for parents. But the older I got the worse it got. Let me tell you, I was not a bad kid. I didn’t party. I didn’t do drugs or drink. I went to school and went to work and then came home. Home was stressful. Donna was hard to please. She was very materialistic. She likes pretty things -who doesn’t? But when you start asking your teenager who is going to high school, band and color guard, working full time, to bail you out of the bank? Maybe you should stop buying new things? It wasn’t like we were dressed in the latest fashion or anything. We dressed in Wal-Mart clothes mostly, sometimes -tax season- we would go to old navy or something. But there was always something new in the house. A new flat screen. A new aquarium. A new bird. A new bird cage. A new sound system. Stuff like that. Mind you, Donna didn’t work. She was on disability after she got cancer. And then my mom worked sometimes 3 jobs to make ends meet. We were on housing and food stamps. But there were always new things.

There were always fights. Always. Whether it was between me and her or between her and my mom. It was a very negative place. I always hated when we would be fighting and someone would call. She could be screaming her lungs out at me and then answer the phone with a voice as sweet as honey.

I remember when I was 15 -that’s about the time I started having problems with the depression. I was having problems sleeping -I would have nightmares, so I wouldn’t sleep. But then the nightmares happened while I was awake. They would follow me around the school. I got into poetry that year. I wrote a poem about ghosts that got handed over to the principal, that got handed over to the counselor, which queued a call to my parents. They come up there and were very concerned and promised to get me help. Well when I got home, help meant that I was grounded. And I got yelled at.

When I finally graduated and went off to college, things got a little better. We were able to talk and breathe. But it wasn’t meant to last. As soon as she knew I was getting refund checks from financial aid, she wanted things and she wanted me to buy them. And when I told her no, she stopped talk to me. Literally, gave me the silent treatment in the car.

I guess the end of it all started October 2-3, 2010. It was family weekend at my college. I had invited them out -my mom and Donna. My mom -who, at the time, I didn’t know was my mom- had to work. So it was just going to be me and Donna. Donna showed up late. And ate a late lunch with me. I had to go get ready for the game. I left. Saved her a seat. The entire time she was there, she was on the Damn cell phone trying to pick up a guy! Are you kidding me? She had no interest in being there with me, she just wanted to get a guy. So that night, she cried and told me how awful it was at home and that I needed to come home and protect her. So I went home with her the next day.

It was awful. Mom knew what was going on because I was there. Donna tried to ambush her. She didn’t want mom to leave -they’ve been in a lesbian relationship for 28 years mind you- but mom was done. So she left. That night Donna told me that I needed to quit school so I could take care of her. And when I told her no she lost it.

The next day, she was telling me good bye like it would be for the last time. To this day, I don’t know if she took something or if it was an act. Either way, the cops were called and she was carted off to Hugley in Ft Worth under suicide watch. They kept her for a week. She came home. And was acting like things were better. She wanted to make things right with mom, she wanted to go buy her a ring. But it was too late for any of that. So a couple days later, I get a call, she’s back in the hospital. And I go to see her. She’s telling these people how she can kill herself with her sheets! I told the nurse who told the case worker. Turns out, she gets awarded to the state and they send her to Wichita Falls. She’s there until January.

Now during all of this, I’ve found out that I like to smoke when I’m stressed. And vodka goes real good with Dr. Pepper. My neighbor tells me that I’m adopted and I confront my real mom. It was a happy relief. We go to see Donna. Who throws a fit that I found out, saying that I was never supposed to know. And I told her that I was getting married thinking that would get her to want to come out, nope. So after the wedding, we go to see her. And she blows up! So much that the orderlies have to take her away.

When they do finally let her out, she has to move. They foreclosed on the duplex we were living in. We packed all her things. We got to see her but she has a “husband” now that she met in the hospital named Scott. And she won’t let me have my things -my high school diploma is really all I want anyways- and she threatens to call the cops on me. And that’s how it ends. We didn’t speak after that. She wants nothing to do with me today. But if you check out her Facebook it says otherwise:

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But she does this so people will feel sorry for her. And to a point I want to reach out to her, but all its going to do in the end is hurt me. So maybe we need to learn how to unlock the pain, unleash it, let it live and let it go.

 

I’ll Be OK

I’ll be ok, just not today. A thought that I haven’t looked at in a while.

Strangled in the grasp of anxiety and panic attacks as of late, I’ve been telling myself and my husband that I’ll be ok. But he worries, and no one could blame him. If I’m not ok enough to be at work, then something is wrong. Well, yes something is wrong. But it won’t last forever. I’ll be ok. Just, maybe not today.

Work has been a stressor to me for a very long time. The urge to run from the building screaming like a maniac passes through me everyday. I’ve been holding my tongue, and willing myself to stay at my desk for a long time. My last job lasted almost a year until I couldn’t take it anymore. The idea of going to work turned my stomach upside down, cramps, and nausea followed. Walking into the building felt like walking into a cloud of darkness and fog. Stifling and choking me. Sadness crept through me. Sitting at my desk made my skin crawl. And the overwhelming desire to run weighed on me. But I forced myself to go, for my family. We need me to work. I reminded myself everyday that someone has to buy Rockee some food!

But eventually, like it usually happens, it became too much. The weight too great. The need to run outweighted the need to stay. I felt bad and stupid.

Now, I have a new job. And the feeling is starting again. Knowing that I’ll be ok is senseless when your body is screaming otherwise. Panic starts as a tickle of anxiety. It starts in my chest. It’s a funny tickle that’s hard to move away. Then it spreads. My heart starts racing. Or skipping. I have palpitations too. Then it becomes hard to breathe. Like all the air has been sucked from the room and my lungs are protesting. Hyperventilating starts. Trying to gulp as much air as I can when there is none. My brain feels fuzzy. It’s a combination of the hyperventilating and my heart racing. Then it’s numb. It starts at my lips. It spreads. Like tar, it slowly moves, taking its time reaching for other parts of me. Vision goes black at the edges. I can hear my voice calling to me, telling me it’s ok. It’s just a panic attack. It’ll be ok. But everything in my body tells me that this is the end. And the need to flee renews and I run away. I leave. I just go.

Leaving, makes the spots disappear. Leaving lets air back into my lungs. Removing myself from the building is freedom and I am ok.

When I get home I sleep, or, lately, I clean. It’s therapeutic and it makes me look like the good housewife that I’m not. Rockee comes and sits in my lap. Pressing her body against mine. Relieving the pressure in my body.

Then my husband gets home. And the looks and marks of concern grace his face. Worry. I apologize, because it’s my own fault that I’m home. How do you explain to your husband, who works so hard to provide for you, that you can’t even stay at work? He understands. He’s had panic attacks, he knows. But it doesn’t sit well with me. In my mind, I’m wrong. Things are falling apart and breaking. Shattering all around me and it’s all my fault. Because I have a job and I can’t make myself do it. “We’ll be fine,” he says. He’s just worried about me. I’ll be ok, just not today.

One day, maybe I’ll understand that people aren’t as bad as those that I’m used to. I’m so used to being criticized and scrutinized, having someone believe in me, it’s new terrain. While I want to say that I’m optimistic, I’m not.

The logic – or science I should say – is there. I know what a panic attack is. It’s a sudden burst of adrenaline caused by a misfire in the fight or flight center in my brain. That’s why there always the urge to run away. Even when there is nothing to run away from. I know that deep breathing and grounding techniques help. And when that fails there is medication. But in the middle of an attack, there nothing. Nothing but the need to run. So I run. And, what’s going to happen to me, when I run at the wrong time? No one can run forever. And being an adult means taking responsibility, means holding a job for more than a few months at a time. This is not healthy, not logical, not sensible. But what do you do when the one thing you need to do causes you fear – blinding fear? Face it? I’ve tried. Oh, how I’ve tried.

Maybe someday, I’ll figure it out. But I guess for now, I just take it one day at a time. Because, I’ll be ok, just not today.