Today I feel more calm.
Yesterday, we went to my sister’s house, and I asked her to share her memories about my dad and me. She pretty much verified my story, though she says she never actually witnessed the hitting, because she was hiding in her room. She remembers the belt and the switches and the chaos, and finally my mother did apologize, with tears in her eyes, but maintains that she does not remember.
And that’s okay with me.
It wasn’t my intention to bully my mother into an apology or prove to her that she was an unfit mother or analyze this to death. Overall, my mom was a very good mother to me. I just wanted to be acknowledged. I just wanted to be heard and believed, at least a little bit. I just wanted to talk about it.
And now I feel a little better.
I think when we have childhood pain, we can spend the rest of our lives trying not to feel it. I jumped from the frying pan into the fire by marrying so young and moving away, generating my own chaotic life, which mostly allowed me no time to dwell on my childhood situation.
Maybe it was my saving grace. Maybe if I had looked at it then, it would have been too much to bear.
Twice divorced, and living a relatively peaceful life now, I think I finally have the guts to face some of these things. I cannot let go of things I do not acknowledge.
I do clearly see that the dysfunction continues in my family here, and that I want no part of that. My sister is a product of my mother’s codependent “love,” and Grace reminds me that in order for me to be “loved” like that, the price would be high. I am not willing to sacrifice my freedom and my “self” and my life in order to be the object of my mother’s affection, or, rather, the object of her disease. I think I can gladly let Wendy have that role.
Mom announced yesterday that she was doing her will, and that she was granting Wendy power of attorney, since she lived nearby, and I was out of state. I don’t know if that’s common legal advice, but maybe it is the best thing, after all.
On a lighter note, I did finally hear from R.V., who is supposed to call today so we can arrange a meeting. I’m not holding my breath, but I am a little excited about that. I think a good long conversation with him could hold a key to some other childhood mysteries that have been puzzling me for awhile.