Hello Enthusiasts and Freaks - I'm coining this right now because to me these are complimentary words and they embody both myself and the awesome readers I've been talking to <3 If the word freak or geek or weirdo rubs you the wrong way please replace it with the word of your choice. Personally I'm over-enthusiastic about most everything and I am definitely a freak, self proclaimed geek and a complete (and proud) weirdo! OK moving on....
The holidaze - AHHHHH - I am one of the few (though I meet more of me every year) who does not love the holidays. Yes I realize I'm hypocritical by saying I'm enthusiastic - but I'm also human! For me the holidays have always represented high stress, unmet expectations and more stress. As time goes on I find the best way for me to get through them is to remove myself from the stressful situations as best as I can. I'd love to hear from you - about what your holiday experiences are like! Do you love them? Hate them? What do you do to cope?
And here comes the sharing part, the real part, the vulnerable part (per Martha Carr, thank you)... Last year on Thanksgiving I had a major falling out with my father and he disowned me. Seems very dramatic and it was (complete with threats of violence on his part) and a year of me fighting a lung infection but the reason I'm sharing this is because it changed me forever. How could it not? It actually made me a much better person. Before that I took a lot of crap from people. I wasn't a "pushover" but I was uber tolerant. I could (and still can) see all sides of most situations. So I may not agree with someone's point of view but I can understand why they have it and I can respect that. This, does not always lead to diplomatic relationships - which is what should happen in healthy communication = diplomacy. And my family pushes my buttons. Often times parents can't see their children as grown adults with their own opinions, their own personalities and their own lives. They see us as 5 year olds and even when we're 55, they still try and control us. Unfortunately this was the way my father treated me. He also treated me with complete and utter contempt. Nothing I ever did was good enough, I was always a disappointment and a failure in his eyes. And I spent many years trying to "make him love me" trying to "make him proud". But no matter how much money I made or how many degrees I acquired, it was never enough. Now that I've had some time away from him I can see that it all had absolutely nothing to do with me. It had to do with the way he felt/feels about himself.
People who have no control over their own lives try to control others. Some unhappy people want others to be miserable too. Using addicts, caught in their disease of addiction exhibit some scary and abusive traits which include but are not limited to: gaslighting, abuse (physical, emotional, psychological), criticizing, condescending, patronizing, manipulation, ignoring, teaching you that you're less than or that your needs don't matter - and the list goes on! One of the many pathologies of this is becoming an identified patient (treated as the "black sheep" of the family).
I'm obsessed with pathologies because I know that every antagonist believes that what they are doing is right, just as my own father believed that he was abusing, controlling and manipulating me "for my own good".
Was it painful and horrible and heartbreaking to lose my father? Of course it was. Do I still think about him every day? I do. Do I still love him? I do. But that doesn't mean that I would welcome that kind of horror back into my life. I think that if he ever got sober and stepped back to really look at me for who I truly am (something he was never able to do) - he'd actually be proud of me. Do I need that anymore? Nope. Do I think that will happen in this lifetime? Not holding my breath!
I have to look at it as a blessing in disguise because it helped me shake off that last little bit of of myself that was no longer serving me. If I am not my best self for ME, I can't be my best self for anyone else. Losing my father was one of the hardest things I've had to deal with and it was also the most liberating.
Author Chloe Adler
Here are some musings - Nothing fancy - no outline and no editor - just some stream of consciousness. You want to read my books? :)