I’ve always loved writing stories. I can remember back to my childhood, many hours spent in the bathroom alone having imaginary conversations and conducting imaginary conferences and meetings. You see, the bathroom was the only place I was allowed to spend time with the door closed so just in recent years I started realizing why I spent so much time in that stupid, not very big bathroom on that shaggy, oval blue rug. What I never really realized until now is that all those hours spent on that blue shaggy rug I was writing stories in my head. I was running off into my imagination. Escaping a place I was never happy and never comfortable. I guess it’s time I start telling a little about my background. This is the part that I wasn’t sure how to do,
I come from a Jewish, upper middle-class family of 4 in the San Fernando Valley or suburbs of LA. A mom, a dad, an older daughter (me), and my younger brother. By ALL accounts we were/are the perfect family unit. Just like we were supposed to look like. In fact, that’s how it’s always been. How it looks IS all that matters. But inside, I now know, none of us has ever been happy. My parents are responsible for their own destiny and I gave up judging their choices and wishing a different happy ending for each of them many years ago. The kids have been out of the house for over 10 years, they seem now to be in love and enjoy each other’s company more and more, I don’t know if they’ve grown on each other in the 40 years or my father’s intense loyalty has kept this marriage together for 40 years.
My brother and I don’t talk about this stuff, so I don’t know anything about what he’s thinking, but, he’s now married and found a wonderful girl who comes from the kind of family I always dreamt of coming from, so there’s that. I can only assume he too felt what I felt and wished to escape. And of course I’m jealous.
But in all of this it never occurred to me that I love to write. That writing all of these things down would be cathartic. I never was good about keeping a diary, I think I was afraid she’d find it and read it. So, I just kept all of this inside. The pain of not having the support and love from my parents. The constant judgments. And the always having to pretend we were happy. It’s exhausting. So I just started playing radio shows and TV programs in my head.
I joke now that they’re the voices in my head that entertained me for hours on that shaggy shaggy, oval blue rug in that bathroom growing up. And sometimes I still get distracted by them. I find myself driving and I turn the radio louder to drown out the voices. Or while I’m watching TV. My imagination was my escape as a child and as an adult its how I survive. But since I started writing a few weeks ago the voices are less, oh boy, don’t be mistaken they are still there, I mean its 8am on a Monday morning and I’m supposed to be off and sleeping, but instead the voices took over, so I decided to write. I don’t want to hurt anyone with my writing; it’s not ever my goal. I just want to heal. I’m 36 years old, knocking on 37’s door, and I want to be whole again. Whole like I’ve never been in my entire adult life. I’m getting there, more and more every day.
You see, I’m the child of abuse. Verbal abuse. I come from a parent that is a rage-a-holic. And we never deal with our problems, we never resolve our problems, they just simmer under the surface to be brought up again and again and again and again. Therefore, I put myself in unhealthy relationships time and time again to be abused just like I have been my entire life. I don’t know any different. I mean, I do now, I’m very aware of it now. And I run. If I see I’m in an abusive relationship/friendship I jump ship and get out STAT. I’m over letting other people take control of me and my life. I’m done being friends with people who are the only ones who get an opinion in the relationship. I’m done being in relationships where there isn’t good communication. To me, communication is the number one most important thing in ANY relationship. And as I digress for half a second on this, I must say it’s something I’ve worked extremely hard at being good ALL THE TIME at since I know I come from a family defunct of GOOD communication.
The problem is the lingerers. Those relationships from my past I’m not ready to give up, I CAN’T GIVE UP, but still possess this toxic like arrangement. This one-sidedness that I was used to all my life but have eradicated from my current personal life. They on one hand, feel soooooooo comfortable, almost like going home, yet so uncomfortable at the same time. I’m 36 years old, for most of my life these were the kinds of interpersonal relationships I knew. You see, when you come from an abusive family, of any kind, you carry that with you your entire life. It affects everything you do. Every friendship you have, every person you date.
I left my parents home and ended up with a man who physically abused me. I have girlfriends for 15+ years who are have the greatest friend in me, but never return the favor and ALWAYS let me down. And I used to be able to handle this better, I used to be able to shrug it off, but somehow as I’m getting older I can’t. I can’t just compartmentalize and pretend this is normal. I WANT TO. I just can’t. and I don’t know why. Why all of a sudden would I rather be back with the voices in my own head on that ugly shaggy, oval blue rug than spend time with people who don’t see how lucky they are to have me as a friend?
Maybe it’s because I understand my value now.
Maybe it’s actually a gift.
Maybe I’m finally healed from all my abusive ex took from me by telling me over and over again I was dumb, and worthless and stupid.
Maybe it’s because I know I deserve people in my life who will give me exactly what I need without my telling them, just like I do for them. Anything less to me at this point in unacceptable. And maybe that’s unfair terms & conditions, but, it’s the golden rule. I don’t ask for anything I don’t give in return.
“Do unto others as they do unto you”. ~ traci xoxo