Day 13 – On Acceptance

Leave it to catching up on and reading today’s posts thus far to once again inspire my post.  I don’t know if it’s synchronicity or what, but I don’t think a day has passed where someone has written a post that has given me an “AHA!” moment.

Today, a shout out to Effy, Amy, Kathleen, and Nolwenn.  Go check them out!

 

My earliest memories are probably ones in which it was instilled in me that I was not good enough.  One story I was told over and over was how my parents left me when I was three weeks old to go visit her oldest sister for Thanksgiving. I was left with my grandparents.  I was told she called to check on me, though I have a feeling she really could care less.  I could never understand why new parents would not jump at the chance to show off their new baby.  I’m almost positive my father only went along with this to appease my mother.  I honestly am not sure my mother ever wanted me.

I was always told I should be seen and not heard. I was threatened with the belt, but  rarely ever hit  with one. No my mother had a better weapon to wield over me if I was in her view disobedient.  The silent treatment.  She could go for days without talking to me or looking at me, if she looked at me it was more like she was looking through me.

Kindergarten:  My school used corporal punishment, often.  Some teachers did it more than others, some never laid a hand on a student.  Those seemed to be the ones that didn’t last more than a year or two. Anyway, I can remember getting paddled in Kindergarten for no reason. Often it was because I wrote my “R” backwards (Thanks Toys R US!)  Other times, I had no idea what it was for.  I swear they would just target some kids and smack our asses with this heavy wooden paddle.

Fifth Grade: There was the psycho nun that would slap your hand with a wooden ruler if you got math problems wrong.  I remember this one boy in my class, where she escalated to using a wooden whisk broom on him the closet.

I was a thin child. Not quite underweight.  My doctor felt that as long as I was thriving, I was healthy.  At least that is my impression.  So I was always called names by my mom and other family members.  Skinny Minny, Boney Marrowny, Scarecrow, Tall Drip of Water (even though I wasn’t tall, I was one of the shortest in my class.)  Some kids on the block started calling me ToothPick or Qtip.  When I was about 12 or  13, I tried to overeat most days so I could gain weight.  Put “meat on my bones”.  It didn’t work.  No matter how much candy, milk shakes, or cheeseburgers I ate after school.  I guess I thought if I weighed more, I’d be loved more.

I wasn’t allowed to have a differing opinion.  I had to agree with and go along with anything my mother said or did, regardless if I knew she was wrong. I had to hate the things and the people she hated or I’d get that silent treatment.

So what I was learning as a child was I wasn’t good enough, I wasn’t wanted, I had to get good grades but not be too smart for my own good, I was too skinny, too pale, too stubborn, too lazy.  I was accused of being lazy.  My mother wouldn’t let me do anything. I wasn’t allowed to do dishes, I wasn’t allowed to cook, I wasn’t allowed to vacuum or mop.  If I asked to do one of these things, she had some excuse.  Cooking, it was I might cut or burn myself.  Sometimes on a rare occasion I was allowed to beat an egg or dip the chicken to bread it, or mix the ground beef for meatballs or meat loaf.  It wasn’t often.

I remember one summer visiting my mother’s oldest sister.  I think I was about  12.  She said I needed to be doing the dishes.  I said no I don’t.  Which of course was the wrong answer LOL.  She came back with I was more than old enough.  To which I said “Mommy doesn’t let me.”  I think she was floored.  I’m pretty sure she had somethings to say about it.  But whatever they were, it changed nothing except on a rare day my mother would allow me to wash the pots.  But I think that changed when I tried to take a Brillo pad to her cast iron pan.

I was being taught to hate everyone, trust no one.  Be seen,  not heard, but preferably be invisible too.  Don’t be a follower unless it was following my mother.  Ask no questions, just do as you’re told. Privacy and secrets are not a luxury I was allowed.  Be quiet, be obedient.

There were the thoughts that if I was just a better little girl, then my Daddy wouldn’t drink and be angry and yell all the time.  If I tried harder and gave into the other kids, they’d want to be my friend.  If I acted better and stayed quiet, that boyfriend wouldn’t have hit me.

Fast forward a few more years, now I’ve fallen in with the church crowd.  Where the man preaches how the wife is a servant to her husband.  That he has the final say over all things, he is never wrong.  You’re supposed to be a quiet and obedient woman, having dinner ready when he comes home and the house spotless.  I actually had someone tell me they wouldn’t take me to midweek service unless I had fully cleaned and vacuumed the apartment and then had a hot meal waiting for my husband when he got home. I said what’s the point if he’ll have to warm it up anyway or something along those lines. But she said I had to be a good little wife and that was what was expected of me.

Then it was (from his perspective anyway) I didn’t cook well enough, I didn’t clean well enough, I wasn’t smart enough, obedient enough, agreeable. Anything and everything that went wrong was my fault.

All my life, almost everyone in my life tried to stuff me into some sort of box of their choosing.  Boxes I did not fit into. So I have grown up trying to figure out how to fix myself so I could fit in their box and make them happy no matter how miserable it made me.  In all my efforts to make everyone else happy and accepting of me, I forgot to make myself happy and be accepting of myself.  The things I dislike most about me, are things that others made me into.

Like for example, I had the worst experience at the dentist when I was a little kid.  My mother didn’t advocate for me at all.  She only compounded my fears before and after that.  So thanks to that and some hereditary shit, I have the worst dental problems.  I haven’t address any of it, because A) I can’t afford it, B) I can’t even make an appointment without going into a full on panic attack, and C) even if A or B weren’t an issue, I still need to be sedated and good luck finding a dentist that does.  All of them will need to go and be removed.  So I don’t like to go places or smile or meet new people.

But you know, it’s not just the dental thing. (Also besides being shy and introverted)  I feel like I am being judged no matter what, because I feel like people can see all those things I have been told was wrong with me ever since I was a little girl.  Except I’m no longer the skinny kid.  I’m heavier now than I was at the peak of my pregnancy.  I hit 140 when I was pregnant.  Today I am more than that. I could do a bit without the love handles maybe or my little Buddah belly, but otherwise I’m okay with my weight.  I don’t feel like OMG DOOM.  Yes I could do without the soda (*Sips ginger ale*), the candy, the sugary foods, the high carbs, etc. And I do want to cut back on junk and eat better, but it’s because I want to and because I know it’s healthier for me to do so.

Then there are the people that prejudge me because they knew my mother or my father. Though, not so much my father any more, he’s been gone a long time.   But my mom….ho boy did she ever hurt a lot of people and burn a lot of bridges.  I don’t see myself going back to New York anytime soon, so I don’t have to worry about seeing these people.

Learning to accept yourself is hard.  Learning to stop feeling like you need to fix something about yourself is harder still.  Maybe they are equal in some way.

I like dressing in black or dark clothes.  Sometimes I like to maybe wear something a little quirky even.  I like not wearing make up, but sometimes (rarely) I do like to put some on.  I like not wearing butt floss for underwear.  Gimme grannies all day every day LOL.  Bras make me feel like I’m suffocating, or at the very least like I’m in a vice. I like my rabbit food, aka salads.  I like burning incense and lighting candles.  I like my tarot cards, even if I still don’t know how to read them properly.  I like my Saints and my Goddesses, I like my Rosary and my Sacred Medals.  I like my statues and my gem stones and crystals.

I’m learning to love me.  It’s not an easy road.  It’s easier to hide in plain sight than to let some one see who ever the real me might be.  Honestly, I don’t even really know who she is. I’m still fighting to shed those layers and labels everyone in my past layed on me.  It’s a long road, hopefully not too hard of one.  I’m just tired of trying to fix myself to be more acceptable to someone else, to be more pleasing to their eyes.  I hope one day I will break this mold, that I will stop hiding, that I will stop trying to be what others think I should be.  In the meantime, baby steps.

 

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Day 12 – Wind Anxiety

I don’t know what to write about today. Not really, anyway.

I guess we ended up with 10-20 MPH winds, with a few good guts thrown in.  My computer desk faces the back patio where the remaining part of the offending tree stands.  Every time the wind kicked up, I would stare at the tree.  Watching its limbs bob and bounce in the wind.  Then it would look like the tree was moving.  I know ( I HOPE!) it was just my imagination. Freaking myself out.  I would have to look away, lest I break out in a panic.

The wind would get the tarp and plastic going in a racket.  Our normal nervous needs a puppy Prozac Bassett hound could care less about the noise.  Really Fred? The slightest indication of thunder or gods forbid hunting season, and he is losing his shit.  Wind blowing and making a shit ton of noise coming through the gap in the tarp….NOTHING!

On the other hand, our fearless St. Bernard was getting all wide-eyed at the offending sounds.  Can’t say I blame her, I was right there with her.  But I had to stay or at least appear calm for her sake.  She pretty much hid behind my computer chair for most of the afternoon. And whenever the wind would kick up and the noise got loud, her eyes would get big as saucers.  Poor girl.

Looks like it might have finally passed.  With maybe a slight breeze now.  I’ll be so glad when that tree is down and the repairs are made.  I’m also glad I didn’t see it come down and through the roof/ceiling.  I’d probably be a basket case if I had.

Day 11 – Waiting Game

Yesterday the adjuster and the contractor were out here.

Today, we are waiting on an estimate for the repairs and to find out when things will start moving along. It will take two to four weeks for the trusses to get built.  Then we will need at least three consecutive dry days for them to install them, put in the new ceiling, and then put the plywood and shingles on.

We are also waiting on what we should have done with the remaining portion of the tree and how much they will pay for it.  The tree guys say it is still an active threat to the property.  There is some confusion as to how much is covered for its removal, and we’re not sure they quite understand how the tree split and fell.  Hopefully that all gets sorted soon.

In the mean time, the contractor company is also the emergency damage control company.  I don’t know what exactly it is called.  But they are the ones who came and tarped the roof once the tree was removed off the house.  Today they sent some one out to tend to the inside, by cleaning out twigs and additional insulation, bits of plywood and shingles, doing a cut out on the hanging bits of ceiling. Then covering the almost one full sheet of dry wall size hole in the ceiling with plastic.  It makes quite the noise when the breeze blows.

The fear now is we have wind coming in tomorrow.  One map looks like we could see anywhere from 21-35 MPH winds, no idea on the gusts.  But another map says its SE of us.  So we don’t know, but what we do know is that any wind no matter how slight we are going to be on edge. Especially until that other half of the tree is cut down. As sad as that makes me, it is a necessity.

All we can do now is wait.  Wait for the numbers to be crunched.  Wait for decisions to be made.  Wait for repairs to begin.  And then wait for them to be completed.  And for all of us, that can’t happen soon enough.

Waiting (in this case) SUCKS!

Day 10 – What Is Sacred And Holy?

I wasn’t sure what I was going to write about today.  I thought I would  touch on the clean up around here, which I will do first and then get to today’s topic.  The tree has been removed from the roof.  The hole out side is much bigger than we thought, it extends from the eave to the pitch at the top just about. There is a fracture under the gable there, two broken trusses, possibly three, on might have even shifted slightly.  According to the restoration guy, we will need a new roof and half the house gets a new ceiling because of how it’s constructed.  It will most likely be summer before all work is complete!  Two to four weeks just to order and build the trusses!!  But for the moment, we get to  take a breath.  The adjuster has been here, the restoration guy is putting together an estimate. The remainder of the tree has to come down and we need to find out what if any of that is covered, we’re not 100% clear on that part.

I want to thank Sumaiyah Wysdom  and  Effy Wild for  inspiring today’s post.  Though, I’m don’t know where to begin without going off on a wild tangent LOL.  I know that whatever I end up writing, there will be lots of little bunny trails I can go down to post with at other times.

I was raised Roman Catholic.  Nine years of Catholic school, kindergarten to eighth grade.  I even wanted to go to an all girls Catholic high school, I don’t know wtf I was thinking there.  I think I got accepted to my choices, I was willing to go to the cheapest of them but oddly my mother said no.  Probably a blessing in disguise that I didn’t know at the time, but that doesn’t me public school was any easier. I think I wanted to go to a Catholic school because I would be familiar with the route of Prayer, Pledge, classes, prayer, lunch, prayer, more classes, ending prayers, go home. Rinse Repeat.  I guess they followed the same ritual in high school, but I never got to find out and I never asked anyone.

We were the church every Sunday type family, heck my dad only went the Midnight Mass on Christmas Eve and was rarely sober for it.  Even while in school I wasn’t at Mass every Sunday.  We were more Easter/Christmas types.  Somewhere along the way, I quit all together.

What I remember loving about it was the ritual of Mass, especially the incense.  How the altar and certain things and statues were considered sacred.  How there was a small gold vessel that was supposed to be holding some sort of relic.  When I was in the fifth grade, I have vague memories of helping to clean the church on Fridays with a Nun that was older than dirt.  It was like a rite of passage for some of us.  And Societies we could join, though I never did really understand them.  In the 8th grade we had to join one, had to wear the white doily on our heads for the initiation Mass.  I can’t remember what it was called, but nor can I remember we did anything after.

To my Grandma, Mary was sacred.  So was the Rosary.  To her, praying the Rosary to Mary during the war and aftermath is what saved them and got them through it.  She suffered much loss, but she survived.  As a result of her stories, and even though I don’t pray on it or to Mary, she and the Rosary are sacred to me too.   I’m always on the look out for Mary statues at thrift stores and yard sales. I think I left behind my Grandma’s favorite Rosary when I left my ex.  It makes me sad that I can’t find it.  There are also certain saints and medals that I feel are sacred to me.  Like St. Dymphna, my mother always said she was the saint of those with anxiety and nervousness.  She had a small statue of her on her dresser when I was little.

I left the church sometime in high school as I said.  After marrying my ex, friends of his sisters led me to Christianity but I was supposed to forsake all that I knew.  I tried for years to make this born again life fit me, but once again I had people telling me how I should feel, what was acceptable and unacceptable to believe in, what I could and could not watch or listen to.  I was being stuffed into a box and anything from my old life that I might consider sacred was now consider an idol.  You couldn’t have statues, you couldn’t have a rosary.  Try as much as I could, I couldn’t reconcile myself to it all. It just didn’t feel right, but still I tried and tried and tried.

Eventually ending up in a small church in GA that bordered on cult like.  They wanted you to only use the services of those that were members.  Need house, we have a realtor.  Need a mortgage, we got a broker.  Need taxes done, we have a member who does them.  Need a car, go to the pastor’s son in law.  It was give give give and don’t you dare say no.  When we eventually left that church, they all turned their backs on us.  Supposed friends no longer even said hello, the kids were no longer allowed to play together, and my scrapbook business fell apart because all my clients attended that church.  (But hey I had a good 5 year run, not gonna complain).

We church hopped for a bit, bouncing between a couple of different ones.  Eventually tried going back to the RC church that we find for my Grandma to go to if she wanted to. Since we had to take her, it made sense we all went.  It was different than I remembered, yet the same.  Just the church wasn’t as ornate as the one I grew up in.

Eventually, I just walked away from it all and started seeking out a Pagan path.  It seemed right.  I don’t know where I fall on the path, feels like every where and no where. But there is no one to say that my once sacred items cannot still be so to me.  I feel the Goddesses Brigid and Rhiannon to be most sacred to me, Cerridwyn and Morrigan too. Yet so is Mary and Dymphna and the odd saint here and there.  Even though I don’t pray it, the Rosary still is.  I still find I will want to wear the medals I have from time to time too.  Trees are sacred, so it hurts that this one fell.  I am hurt that we have to cut down the apple tree, for it too is sacred.

Then, there is my NO and my YES.  I struggle with NO. The guilt I feel when I say NO to something or someone, it’s overwhelming.  And it doesn’t have to be they said anything even if it’s only OKAY Thanks. My brain automatically goes down negative lane and assumes the worst because I said NO.  And if I say YES to something, I don’t always feel the joy that should come with it. Especially when I feel like I am saying it out of imagined guilt. I am struggling to find that balance, to be okay with my word being sacred and holy.  That I am worth it and enough.

My altars, if I can call them that have no rhyme or reason no matter how hard I try.  I would like to have something small near me on my desk, but….CATS!  I’m sure I can devise something, perhaps a small terrarium like one where it’s enclosed.  Yet at the same time, I don’t want them out where other people can look and touch.  I get squirrly about people touching my stuff, whether I am present or not.  Thanks mom for the mental and emotional scars!  (that’s another post).

I suppose it all comes down to I am still figuring out what is sacred and holy to me.  I am happy to be in a place though, where things that once were can still be.  I don’t think I will ever be in a place where I can openly “pray” or smudge if I choose to, where I can display my altar(s) “publicly”, where I can pull tarot or oracle cards, where I can commune with the God/dess.  I don’t like being watched, because then I feel like I am being judged, and then my sacred and holy space no longer feels that way.  It’s like when I try to make art at my art desk, and someone comes in to “see/say what are you doing”, the spell is broken.

One day maybe I will have it all figured out.  One day maybe I will not care about who’s watching or listening.  But it is not this day.

This turned out way longer and rambly than intended…Sorry about that 🙂

Day 9 – A Post In Which I Vent

How to make me feel like I’m not enough and too much in one go.  It’s easier than people think.  It makes me feel like I need to stuff myself in a box.  Like I shouldn’t speak or help, like ever.

It pisses me off.  It makes me want to scream. It makes me want to cry.  I makes me want to hide in a blanket fort and never, ever, ever come out.

Maybe I should just let people assume they are right all the time even when they are wrong and are saying the wrong thing.  Because if you’re going to get all pissed off and make me feel like shit because I quietly corrected you over something that I studied and was licensed to do for a time in my life.

Just because I’m blonde doesn’t mean I’m stupid, that I don’t know anything. If I wanted to be made to feel like I’m insignificant and stupid I could have stayed where I was.

I know I am probably being too vague.  But I need to vent without going into all the details.  I’ve worked all afternoon to calm myself down.  I think I did well enough, because I didn’t cry, I didn’t get loud.  I didn’t even say anything even though I think I was well within my right to.

But fuck, I shouldn’t feel like I need to apologize for something that I didn’t cause. I shouldn’t be made to feel like I have to apologize because I know something.  I have a fucking brain.  I do know things.  I don’t know a lot of things, but this thing….this topic I do know a little something about.  I held a license (that has probably since lapsed since I never did any CE classes and no longer live in that state).

So yeah, that’s how to make me feel like I’m not enough and too much all at once. I’m too much for knowing things.  I’m too much for speaking up.  I’m too much because I corrected something with my knowledge.  I’m not enough because I don’t know how to just keep quiet. I’m not enough to have a brain in my head.  Or maybe those things also make me too much.  Maybe they all make me not enough.

Day 8 – The Day After

Deep breath in, Deep breath out.  And Repeat.

The animals are confused as to why there is a tree (branch) in the house.  Especially our St. Bernard.  She keeps looking at it like why do you have a big stick in the house and I can’t even bring mine through the door.  She is pretty much the only one to notice the one that was through the ceiling.  Now it’s the cats that are trying to understand the small tree branch in the kitchen.

The kitchen pretty much looks like it’s been snowed in and the holes resemble poorly constructed blue skylights.  We got the go ahead from the insurance company to have the limbs removed from the roof and in the process a skinny branch about 6+ feet long fell in through one of the holes.  After they disassembled the damaging limb in sections and placing it unceremoniously in the back yard.  The restoration crew came out to tarp the wholes to prevent any rain that might occur from causing further damage and to keep the birds out.

Tomorrow sometime the adjuster comes out to assess the damage. Then we have the task of getting estimates for all the necessary repairs to be made.

Looking at the damage with fresh eyes today, especially after the limb was removed showed me/us just how lucky we were.  A fraction to the left with one of the sections and it would have come crashing down on my S.O. head and possibly mine.  A fraction to the right and it would have took out the 5th wheel that his Granny lived in until she passed in October.  The small grace in this is that she isn’t alive to experience any of this.  The wind alone would have terrified her, never mind what a downed tree would have done.

It’s the little things we are grateful for.  We are looking for the silver lining in this.  We are seeing it in glimpses.  But we will be glad when it is all over.  Though it might be a few weeks according to the restoration guy.

So for now, we will take it moment by moment.  Being grateful and thankful that none of us or the fur babies were harmed. The reality is that it could have been so much worse.

Day 7 – Preempted Due To Weather

Today, I had been planning to post.  Thinking about what to write, thought I had something.

But that will have to wait, since we are now waiting for the Emergency Insurance Claim person to come to the house and estimate our damage, take photos, and report.  All that not so fun stuff.

We’re having bat shit crazy wind, gusts are probably over 60+ MPH.  And as of almost two hours ago, we have a tree through the roof and in the kitchen.

None of us or the animals are injured. Though the taco meat and leftover Hawaiian ribs I was going to warm up some more of, they are probably a total loss.  The taco meat for sure is, it’s covered in insulation as is most of the kitchen.

When I said I wanted to practice my photography skills……..THIS IS NOT WHAT I HAD IN MIND!!!!!!!

The winds are blowing in from the south as far as I can guess. If it had been blowing any  other way, it would have fallen on and crushed the 5th wheel that was Granny’s home.  This is one time we are thanking the gods she is no longer with us.  As much as we miss her, this would all have been too much for her.

I mean FUCK….it’s all too much for us!

Day 6 – WWRWTW

WWRWTW = “Women Who Run With The Wolves”
This is a book by Dr. Clarissa Pinkola Estes.

 

I’ve heard about the book in art circles for several years now.  The sentiments are always the same. “It’s Powerful.”  “It’s Life Changing.”  “It’s Sacred, my bible.”  And so much more.  I have wanted to read it, for a long time. But I didn’t have a copy.  Then one summer day, two or three years ago, I found this book at a yard sale.  It looked as though it wasn’t ever read. Hard cover.  For ridiculously cheap!!  I can’t recall off hand if it was 10 cents or 50 cents.  I’m sure if I dig through my photo posts I can find out.  I was over the moon excited that I found it! So naturally I had to share with my FB friends lol 😀

I didn’t feel I was  ready to read the book. Honestly….it’s kinda scaring me to read it.  I’m afraid of what it will crack open, what it will bring to light, what it will bring up.  I want change, I want sacred, I want holy.  But it scares me, the unknown.  Normal reaction.  It is those unknowns that scare the crap out of me.

I have been wanting to live an authentic life, to walk in and speak truth.  To be big, bold, fearless.  I want to shed the guilt and the baggage, the fears.  Honestly, I don’t know how to do that.  Maybe this book will shed some light.  Be a beacon.

On Monday, April 16 (the new moon) there is a group of us that will be lead by Cynthia Lee of Restoried Explorations.  We will be reading one chapter a week, with 3 separate week long breaks.  One chapter, 14 I believe, we will split over a two week reading period.

I really don’t know if I am truly ready for this.  But the question that keeps coming up is “If not now, then when?”  How long do I want to keep repeating the same thing over and over, staying stuck.  I know it won’t be an overnight thing. I will have to put in the work.  But I do think it is time.

I will be joining a lovely group of women in this read through and discussion.  Some I am FB friends with, others are familiar names that I have seen around in some other groups or comments on posts of friends.

We start in 10 days.  And as scared as I am, I can’t wait to get started reading.

Have you read it? Listened to the audio book?  What are your thoughts on the book?

Day 5 – Contemplation

I was going to  write about this yesterday, but went off on that other trail about adoption.

This year I am turning 49. Next month will be 29 years since my uncle passed away at the age of 49. I didn’t realize it until I was looking through some papers and I came across a copy of his death certificate.  My grandmother, turned 49 just a few days after I was born.

I’m sure if I dig deep enough and hard enough, I will find other things.  Like, my mother was 49 when I graduated high school.  My father was 49 the year I moved to Florida.

I don’t know why, but it is just giving me some pause to think.  I think of all the events that happened, the one that seems to be hitting me the most is that I will be the same age as my uncle when he died.  It’s a little bit scary.  Granted, his death was alcohol related and he died in his sleep.  It still a little surreal.  Is that the right word?

Maybe it’s because he was one of my favorite uncles, even though I didn’t get to spend a whole lot of time with him.  When I was very little, we’d go over to his apartment sometimes.  I have vague memories of us at my grandmother’s during a holiday. He and his wife and my cousins didn’t spend very many with my grandparents. It used to make me sad.  Mostly because I didn’t understand why no one ever spent holidays with my grandparents or invite them to the in-laws side of the family’s get together.

There is something else about him that I have wondered on occasion.  I was talking about it not to long ago with one of my cousins. She doesn’t want me to dwell on it, and I don’t. Not really.  It’s just a thought that lingers at the very edges of my thoughts, comes forward every once in awhile.  It wouldn’t change things if it were true.  Especially now.  Then I might have gotten upset, but then maybe…probably not.   I know I am being extremely vague.  But it’s something I don’t really want to put out there, especially when you never know who might read a particular post.

All of it is just  giving me pause to think, to contemplate just how short life can be.  Next year I will turn 50.  An age my uncle never got to see.  I guess that means I should probably think about making my 49th a hell of  year, no?

Day 4 – When The Past Comes Calling

I’ve been thinking on things lately.  It happens every once in awhile LOL

A couple of weeks ago, out of the blue I get a message on FB from someone I never expected to hear from.  My sister.  Well half sister.  Is she still just a half because we have different fathers?  Or is she full because we share the same mother?  Some told me once that we were sisters because we came from from the same mother.  We’d only be half sisters if we shared the same father, but had different mothers.  Talk about confusing me!

I first found out about her when I was 12-ish (around 1982).  We found each other in 1998.  We communicated some via email and instant messenger, exchanged xmas cards for a few years. Then she told me she didn’t want a relationship because her adoptive parents didn’t want her to.  I suggested we could just be friends but even that seemed too much for them. Outside of xmas cards, we pretty much stopped communicating.  When we first started talking, she wanted to know health history of the family.  Understandable.  Our mom, was pissed that I was looking for her, and livid that we even found each other.

When I left my Ex, I stopped sending her cards.  I didn’t tell her anything.  When our mom died four years ago, I didn’t feel obligated to disclose it to her. So imagine my surprise when I get a message from her saying she wants to research the family tree.  I struggled with this for a few days.  And she wants pictures if I have any I’d be willing to share.

On the one hand, I was thinking “Oh so now you know me”.  “Why now?”  “What’s her angle?” and all the other questions that go with that.  I mean there’s no money to be had, if that’s what she’s after. Then the other part me was thinking, well it is her family too and she knows nothing about any of it.  But still I struggled. In the end, I gave in and responded. I also had to tell her that our mother was dead.  If she was hoping and I don’t know she was, but any thing she might have hoped to have answered by our mom was long gone.  But at the same time, even if our mom was alive, and she did get to meet her….she would NEVER have gotten the truth out of her.  NEVER!

I haven’t sent/emailed any pictures yet.  I don’t have many on the computer.  I guess she has a right to see what her/our mom looked like.  In the one and only picture she sent me of herself, I thought she looked a little like our mom with long hair.  I did email her the immediate family tree today. Our mom’s parents, siblings, grandparents.  I didn’t break down everyone’s spouses and all our cousins.

Genealogy is a passion of mine, I’m only a hobbyist.  I wish I could afford a DNA test kit and a sub to Ancestry. I wish I could go to Poland and dig through church records and get more information.   I get to my maternal grandparents and I hit a brick wall. It’s frustrating.  One man did tell me that the name of my maternal grandfather is pinpointed to want specific town.  And that anyone with that name, all trace back to people from that town. So if someone has that name, in all likelihood we are related.

I just found that email where I was told that, and it blew me away. I had completely forgotten about it.  But it seems our communications abruptly ended, though he does travel extensively so that could be why.

I am apprehensive about where all this will lead with my sister.  I was so hopeful when we found each other twenty years ago.  I was so disappointed when she said she had to honor her adoptive family’s wishes and not have any sort of relationship.  I refuse to get my hopes up again.  I am pretty much expecting that once she has what she wants, I won’t hear from her again.

That seems to be the pattern with siblings that have not been a part of the family.  My cousin has a half sibling as well.  They or their mother reached out for primarily health information.  Once they got it, that was it.  I understand the need for it, I do.  But it is so painful to not know the person asking.

I was so hopeful that when my mother first told me she had something to tell me, that I was the one who was adopted.  I was so disappointed when she said no.  But when I found out I had a sister, I would fantasize about meeting her someday and having a great relationship with her.  I was even a bit jealous that she was the adopted one and not me. If it was me, then I had a reason to why I always felt like an outcast.

For now, I sit and wait to see if she has anything to say or ask.  And I have to decide which photos to share with her.  If I’m up to it, maybe I will do that today.

 

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