Someone just asked me about something I posted recently and I just wanted to clear it up. What goes on in my brain and what comes out on paper are sometimes two different things. Hey, I know what I’m trying to say.
This person asked me about when I said that I felt that I was being told that I had asked for my abuse. Let me explain. Nobody asks for abuse. What I meant was that I was one day feeling sorry for myself. I’m a good person. Why does bad stuff happen to me?
Occasionally, call it intuition, spirit guidance, hearing voices….whatever you want….something will come to me that I didn’t initiate. So it happened this one day that I was asking the universe or whoever was listening….”why?”. Was I so very bad in a past life or something?
And the answer came to me….”You asked for this.” Not “You asked for it” or “You deserved the abuse” or “You are a terrible person so therefore, just take your medicine”. No….”You asked for this”. And all at once, it was like I understood. It was like I knew when I came into this life what was going to happen and still signed on the dotted line before I put on my little infant parachute and took the plunge. I knew….but I forgot. I needed to be reminded.
What that did for me is it made things a bit less personal. Things were not happening to me because I deserved it or because I was a bad person…..but because I knew before I came into this world that there were certain lessons I needed to learn or to help others learn.
It is a belief that has helped me. Is it true? Who can say? But it helps.
And I was talking to this same person about the walls in our life…those things we have no control over…those forks in the road…those things we cannot change that push us into taking another direction.
Those times we don’t understand loss or heartache or the “things that make us stronger”. Those times we just know that a wall has been constructed and we need to walk the other way.
I told this person how I felt I did not ask for much in life. I only wanted to get married, have a couple of children, love and support my family and grow older with grandchildren at my knee asking for advice while I doled out chocolate chip cookies.
I didn’t care if we were rich or if my husband looked like Brad Pitt or George Clooney or if he worked with his hands and made a hard living and came home to a loving family….didn’t matter. Love was all that mattered.
But I got pregnant one night while dating a guy who I was crazy about, but who had serious settling down issues. I was 20 years old and I needed to get out of my parent’s house but I was not mature or experienced enough to do it on my own. And so I married the guy with serious settling down issues, thinking that being in the same house, and having a son of his own, would somehow make it happen.
You probably know where this is going.
In a couple of years, I ended up with two children, a house….everything I thought “adulting” looked like….with zero emotional support. And with zero emotional support, it is hard to give children everything they need in order to grow into healthy adults. I was not a healthy adult. My husband was not a healthy adult. Our families did not contain many healthy adults…..although my children were loved by their grandparents, where they did get much of the stability they needed in their life, thank God.
But my husband told me outright that we were not a team and he went out almost every night with his friends. He was also not fond of children and had little patience for them. He did not do adulting well. Life insurance? Why should you be able to take a trip to a beach with your new boyfriend after I die? That was what I was married to….and clung to….because I was so afraid to let go.
Fast forward years later and our 15 year old son and his girlfriend are pregnant. Her mother is on disability for mental issues. Her mom slaps her pregnant daughter for shoplifting. We are harassed for money…..Grandma liked the horses. She also got her daughter’s friends to bully my son in school when she didn’t get what she wanted.
My grandson would come to visit with his mom and I would have to clean the mold off of the nipples on his bottles. I would explain to the young mother that this was harmful to the child and that she needed to clean things for him.
Six years later, another baby comes along….this time with a girl who got pregnant the weekend she and my son met. He would go visit her and she would not come out of her room to talk with him. When he refused to marry her, she married someone else, when my granddaughter was two months old.
I had left my husband by this time and my son moved in with him. So if I wanted to see my grandchildren, I had to go to my almost ex husband’s house to see them.
These two grandchildren are now grown and despite my going to court for visitation awhile back and getting to see them now and then for breakfast someplace two or three times a years, at this point, neither of them have any contact with me or their father.
So obviously, life did not go the way I had thought it would. Walls popped up all around. And I’m not telling you this for sympathy. It just is what it is. My grandchildren may or may not come back into my life but there is not much I can do at this point.
My point is….we tend to be unhappy when things are not the way we think they should be in life. And whether or not I knew this was going to happen before I was born….I can’t prove that and it doesn’t change anything.
But what it does do for me is change the way I look at things. If these things have happened to me not because I am a bad person or because I deserve it….perhaps there is another reason. I don’t know that reason. But I can choose to feel sorry for myself. Or not.
My son….the one who is the father to these kids…lives with a friend of his in a house I own. They pay me rent and I take care of repairs. Well, his refrigerator quit on him. He and his father and myself went to Lowe’s a couple of weeks ago to pick up a new fridge. I was buying….they were transporting and installing.
While waiting for the salesperson,, I began talking with a gentleman who was also waiting. I mentioned to him that I liked his face mask…looked comfortable. We began a conversation. In the middle of the conversation, my ex-husband pulls me away and tells me not to talk to people.
I’m not bashing my ex here….what I realized is that my life has changed so much in the years since I was married and told what to do and what to accept. And since then, I talk to people all of the time. It’s what I do for SNAP. But if I had remained married…and trying desperately to make my life fit my fantasy of what it should be….for better or for worse, I would not have taken the road I did that led to this point.
Walls happen for a reason. And it sucks. It’s painful. It’s really, really painful. Walls make you want to give up. They make you want to crawl under the covers and cry and never get up again.
And I don’t know if we know the paths our lives will take before we get here….and I’m not saying it may make it any easier for someone if they knew that they did. Me personally, I want to smack myself for not asking for….demanding….what I knew I would want….but….by saying “I asked for this”….I mean that for me at least, it helped me to stand back and distance myself…..and to somewhat take back some control.
Maybe I can’t move past the walls….but that doesn’t mean I need to beat my head against them either. I can see the wall….perhaps draw a flower on it and wish it well….and choose to take the new path.