Thursday, January 19, 2012

Day 225 ~ Vulnerability & My Family

vul·ner·a·ble    adj      \ˈvəl-n(ə-)rə-bəl, ˈvəl-nər-bəl\


: capable of being physically or emotionally wounded
: open to attack or damage : assailable <vulnerable to criticism>

I feel that out of all the emotions a human is capable of feeling, vulnerability is one that I do not like.  Granted, there are others as well... aggression, anxiety, boredom, contempt, depression, doubt, embarrassment, envy, frustration, grief, guilt, hatred, horror, hostility, homesickness, hunger, hysteria, loneliness, paranoia, rage, regret, sadness, shame, and suffering.  Nonetheless, vulnerability takes the cake!

To avoid feeling vulnerable, I put walls up.  I'll admit it.  Especially when it came to my sister.  As I mentioned in Day 186 and Day 188, there is an unhealthy history here.  Do I blame it on my parents?  I do.   

A Parent's main responsibility is to love and keep their children safe, additionally we are to teach and mold our children to be respectable, good adults.  We want our children to be good.  Do good.  However, when the foundation of that family, the relationship of the parents themselves is not healthy in itself... well, let's just say that it is a recipe for disaster.

Most of my life, I found myself defending myself.  Defending myself against my sister.  I was the quiet one, and she ..  she always had and wanted to be the center of attention and since a toddler, was always in trouble.

I am not saying that I was a complete angel.  However, I did not start to get into trouble until I was in high school... and that only lasted a few years.   Not to mention that I ended up moving out when I was fifteen.  Yes fifteen.  It was more like running away... but any way you look at it, I was on my own (for the most part.)

I lived with different friends, finding family love and normalcy in their homes.  I had many parents, many friends, many homes.  More later on this.

Through the years, my sister and my relationship was NOT healthy.  The people that were mostly at the center of it all, were my parents.  I am not saying that it is their fault 100%... maybe more like 97%.  After all, as a parent you are to instill love into your children and teach them how to get along... as opposed to using them as pawns in your own relationship mishaps.

As time went on, I learned to protect myself.  How? I hardened my heart.  I would put walls up.  I would stay away.  Yes, I stayed away from my family.  Actually, from my sister.  If she was somewhere, I did not go.  If she showed up somewhere, I would eventually leave.  I did not give her the opportunity to hurt me.  The few times I tried to open up, I got burned.  Then when my children were born... I kept away more.  I just did not want them to see a dysfunctional family.

Fast forward to today.  I am disappointed once more.  Our visit started really nice.  As time went on, I saw how she had changed.  Or rather the person she has become.  Oh how I wanted to help her.  Make things better for her.  Then a week into our time together, she found out she had to leave just days after Christmas.  The original plan was for her to stay until February.

When I first found out, I was furious, hurt and upset.  She told me that our mother had informed her that she needed to be back home for an appeal regarding her medical disability, which had been moved up.  Funny, just as I was writing this, I realized that I have no proof of this other than her word.  What is even more funnier, is that just the day before she wanted to go back home to be with our mother because she was going to be alone on Christmas!  (This is a grown woman, not a little girl.)

What I really think that happened...  I think she got tired of my rules and wanted to go home.  RULES?!?!  In my opinion my sister has a problem with prescription drugs.  This is remnant from her being in the hospital one year earlier, and almost dying from lung embolisms and blood clots in her legs.  So... yes I did get mad at her for drinking, even smoking cigarettes!  Wouldn't you if your sister almost died a year earlier?

Then the creme de la creme happened Christmas Eve.  I was trying to put together a gift as a favor to my mother in law, my mom, and was having major computer problems.  My husband Dean, had already left for dinner two hours earlier.  I was really trying desperately to get to Christmas Eve dinner.  Calley and I were ready, as was my sister.  

While I was troubleshooting my problem, my sister started calling all of her friends etc., wishing them a Happy Christmas Eve.  Then out of no where she comes into my office and sticks her phone in my face so I can talk to her daughter.  I told her that I could not talk...  Well... ALL HELL BROKE LOOSE!!

I have never been this mad EVER!!  I completely lost it!!  It was as if all the anger of all the years of abuse, frustration, and our history all surfaced and took over me.  It was if I became possessed.  And, I am so sad to say that my daughter witnessed it all.  I even threw her out of my home (not to worry, after some time I asked Dean to bring her back.)  I had to re-coop, suck it all up, and be a good role model for my daughter.

When it was all said and done.. my daughter and I missed Christmas Eve dinner with our family.  Not to mention that it ended up being Dean's grandmother's last Christmas, being that she passed away New Year's eve.

All I did was pray and pray that night.  I even apologized to my sister.  We both said some pretty horrific things- I went against every fiber in my being with my behavior that night.  I encouraged us both to work through this, to strengthen our relationship.  If we were to get through this and survive, I think we could have really turned our relationship around.

Since she left, she has bee aloof.  Telling me she'd call me back and not doing so.  She has not answered any of my texts.  

I really tried.  

The crappy part of all of this, is that now my daughter does not have an aunt.  Bare in mind that I did not tell my daughter about my having a sister, until last June.  I really thought things would be different this time around.

I hate being vulnerable.  It never fails.  When you finally decided to break down, open up and let someone in... and then it backfires... not cool!  Not cool at all!  Especially since now my five year old daughter is aware of it all.

Before my sister left, with my mother in law's encouragement, I prayed for her.  I asked her to please take care of herself.  Dean and I even pleaded with her that if she continued on her same path, that we were afraid she was not going to be around long.   That we would be getting a call soon.

The only thing I can say to her now... if you love us, your children, grandchildren, and others you say you love... then why do you not love yourself enough to take care of yourself?

Lesson learned... you can not help someone that does not want to be helped.  

You do anything long enough to escape the habit of living until the escape becomes the habit.  ~David Ryan
As we work to create light for others, we naturally light our way.  ~Mary Anne Radmacher

Blessings to all!!

140 days to go...

PS... Sons, I love and miss you.  To the moon and stars above and back.  You are my sunshine(s).

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