I finally realized after ten plus years of my life being so called “ruined” by other peoples’ choices in mental health, addiction, and their living situations that my childhood wasn’t that bad.
It sounds almost silly to admit, but I held a lot of resentment toward both of my parents for having to grow up at 12 years old to take care of the alcoholic schizophrenic of the family at such a vulnerable age. Yet had I grown up impoverished, my situation could have been and most likely would have been a lot worse.
I could have been put in the foster care system, my father could have beaten my mom up or my sister or myself, I could have had nothing to eat. But no. My dad may have not been home a lot, but he never hurt us and always provided. I got everything I ever wanted for Christmas and more. I had church youth group for friends and stability as well as my speech and debate team.
I think I held a lot of resentments toward my mom for her issues, but ultimately she did what she could with the knowledge and abilities that she had and I no longer resent her for that anymore. I mean now, what more could I ask for? I live with her, she’s my best friend, but more importantly she has been sober and medicated for nearly 6 years. I was talking to Diego on the phone and I literally blurted out, “My childhood wasn’t that bad!”
And that’s how I experienced my closure.
Like I had forgiven her for her alcoholism a long time ago in Oregon and it was a whole ordeal epiphany but now I am not letting my past with my parents and my childhood memories be affected by their mistakes because we all fuck up and it’s about having the empathy, compassion, and grace to move on and build up rather than tear down and hold grudges.
It felt good and Diego told me he had been wanting me to get to this point for a long time and I knew I would get there, it just had to be on my terms when time was right. I could have had a lot worse things happen to me and yes the things that happened were traumatic in my experience but not only do they not define who I am today, but they made me a stronger person because I am able to empathize with others’ adversities and use my trauma as a skillset rather than a detriment.
I don’t know what else that would be more profound to say as I don’t think this epiphany will change anyones hearts or minds nor should it. I am just happy to be punching the damn keys and getting my thoughts out because it is muy importante. I may not remember a lot but I do remember what I write (for the most part) so this helps me remember the important stuff and I want to remember this clarity I feel tonight.
Health update: nearly had to go to the ER because my asthma and cough is so severe I can hardly breathe. Had to get cough syrup and it helps a tiny bit. I’ll have to sleep sitting straight up because if I lay down, I will literally drown. Miserable is an understatement. I am beyond miserable. If I knew I wouldn’t die or not be helped at the ER, I would actually go and my dad even offered to take me because he hears how horrid I sound.
Here’s to another day.