Archive for the ‘death’ Category

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Two Right Answers?

July 9, 2011

In our Good Grief group meeting this last week, AR suggested that the two choices I have are both right. That neither one is wrong.

I can choose to take the emotional risk to once again call my parents. Or, I can choose to not take the risk…especially given the history and the next to zero chance that anything will have changed…and especially since my parents DO know how to contact me should they wish to actually connect.

We were talking about guilt…guilt over things we wish we had or had not said or done with the person we had lost. My focus right now is my mother who has melanoma. Although any relationship we once has been gone long ago, her death will bring a final end to any possibility of change.

My husband referred to it as “anticipated” guilt. I had shared how I am looking forward and wondering what decision I should make and whether it will be the right one. How can you know? One thing AR said is important is that we keep talking about the things we are experiencing surrounding the losses we have. Keep talking until we can work through it.

I have been pondering his comment that both decisions are right. In my mind, I kept feeling like I was being a wimp…too fearful to face my father’s abusive words. And what if my mother is somehow being controlled by my father? Forget that she was abusive, too!

In our last conversation, my mother admitted that it was being pushed aside for my son. She said she REALLY WANTED (her emphasis) for me to understand why that was…that it was IMPORTANT that I know. Then…no more contact. It could be manipulation. It could be that she actually let her guard down and got real for a couple of minutes. It could be all kinds of things.

I think it was really helpful for me to hear AR say that BOTH decisions were right….especially since he knows a lot more details than the other women in the group. He knows my parents are toxic for me from meeting with me previously.

I just want to do what is right, but having it pointed out that they KNOW the door is open…they KNOW they can write my hubby and my mother can write me…helped bring a more balanced perspective. It IS helpful to hear that from outside of myself.

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Cruelty and Healthy Boundaries…

September 17, 2010

What my mother has done is cruel. I keep trying to empathize and to understand her pain. But not matter how much I empathize…no matter how much I forgive…it still hurts like hell. I am the unwanted daughter. I did not step up to the plate. I did not take over. I stepped out of line. I left. I have no desire to be a princess other than in the One True Creator God’s kingdom.

I will never live up to her expectations. Her expectations (and his) lead to death. I have chosen a different path. If they do not want me…they can forget my son. I was actually willing to let them talk to him on the phone, but if they don’t want me…forget it. That is not being selfish…it is being real. It is not being vindictive…it is setting boundaries…healthy boundaries.

Boundaries are not OK in the cult. My whole life I had no boundaries. I did not know where I ended and other people began. I was trained to be a chameleon…to anticipate others needs/wants. Those in the cult who knew the trigger words and actions could get anything they wanted. NO MORE!!

I was accessed by a “Christian” therapist after we moved here. He had experience with cult clients. Little did I know that he was not only cult himself…but that we had met many years ago. It ends here…and now! I will not kowtow to my parents. I will not kowtow to anyone but my Lord…and He does not ask me to. He lifts my head to look into His eyes so that I can see His healing love.

I hurt. I am angry. I do not deserve to be treated this way. Even IF I had been the worst daughter on the planet…rather than simply and imperfect one…I do not deserve this. I have reached out via email for a year and a half. It has gone nowhere. I tried. My conscience is clear. I have done what I can. It is their loss. They can blame me all they want…but they have a part in this. I am an adult. I will not submit to them or to their control. I will not go back to the way things were.

So I will continue to mourn what was and I will mourn what never was. I will mourn the dream of having a somewhat regular family. I will keep my heart open until there is nothing left…and at that point…I will mourn for what will never be. I have dreams. I have always had dreams. Many of them are just broken dreams…turning to dust beneath my feet. Oh, well.

I have survived. I will survive. Nay…I will thrive! In spite of how hard my life is right now…I have more freedom than I ever did living under their control. The Creator has given me the gift of who I am…all of me. I am His…and no one else’s…no one’s.

I hope we can make peace before she dies…same with him. But if it does not happen…I refuse to beat myself up with guilt that is not mine.

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Update…of Sorts…Rambling Thoughts

April 18, 2010

So here I am…sitting here with many thoughts going through my head. I think I will share some here…in no specific order.

It is amazing how my heavenly Abba works things out. I recently reconnected by email with an online friend. Then I went to a webinar. During that webinar (which was excellent, by the way), we had the opportunity to respond to what the presenter was sharing about building healthy relationships with others.

Well, in the process, someone else there really related to what I was sharing. So, I gave out one of my emails…not the one I typically use with the aforementioned friend. The woman I met on the phone at the webinar wrote to me and I recognized her email addy. It was my friend! We actually got to “meet” on the phone and did not even know it because we were using screen names that were different from when we had met before. The funny thing, too, is that we knew each other by at least two other screen names each. Know we have a third! We were both excited to reconnect in two ways!

I am thinking about the webinar I am planning on doing. What artwork will I use? How will I get decent photos of the pieces? What will I share? I am looking forward to writing something up and picking out the pieces. I am excited about doing the webinar and hope I can be ready by August…given the unknown of my living situation between now and then.

I am thinking of mother’s day…of father’s day…of my parents. My “relationship”, which is pretty much non-existent, was part of what I shared about in the webinar. The ball is in their court and I am waiting…patiently…for his eventual response. Truth be told, most of the time I don’t even think about it.

However, Kitty (the presenter) shared something called DARVO. Boy, did that describe my family. D is for Deny, which is the first thing the abuser does when confronted. Then…they Attack…which is A. RVO is for Reverse Victim and Offender. By attacking me, when I confronted my parents, I became the “offender” and they the “victims”. I was “hurting them” with what I was saying. I also related to the fact that Kitty, when talking about denial, used the phrase “I don’t remember”. That is EXACTLY what my father said…”I don’t remember doing those things.” Boy, did I relate.

I am thinking of my my marriages…and the vast difference between the two…and the similarities, too. After all, I was in both of them and I have issues. How my husbands responded to my issues is different. And yet…there are times when my current husband can set me off.

I am thinking about sexuality…but that is a whole other post.

I am thinking about my sister, my birthday and her death. She died on my birthday…while I was regaining cult memories. Her death was odd…the manner, the timing. Everything about it and about what happened afterward was just plain wierd…and had the earmarks of cult.  Why was I stronger? Why did I get out? Why am I free? Is she even really dead? Or do they have her somewhere. So many questions…ones that I doubt I will get answers for before I stand before my Creator at the end of time.

I think about my sister…how young she was…how she was living on extended time as a hard core alcoholic and bulimic. I think about the cult family she was living with and how they treated her. I think about her boyfriend who never married her…which was good in the end. I might never have even known she was dead if his parents could have been able to claim her body. I think of their attempts to manipulate me…and of my parents’ attempts.

And I wonder if my parents think of her…and what they think of her. I wonder if they really even think of me…or is it still all just about my son?

I think about the art I want to do…and have no place or privacy to do. I long to do my art…to get back to processing things…whether by art or by writing…by poetry, journaling or blogging.

It has been difficult to find uninterrupted time in my busy days to write here. I feel as if there is so much inside to write about…and yet it is difficult to actually write. I feel as if I am just rambling in my thoughts…rambling in my brain and rambling on “paper”.

Ah, well. Sometimes it is good to just get the rambling out. Maybe it will only make sense to me. That is OK. I know my online friends won’t mind. They are very forgiving. Perhaps more thoughts of substance will come another time. For now…I will live in today…one day at a time. And I will love the people in my life today…each and every day. They are gifts for a time and I cherish them.

I don’t know what tomorrow will bring…what joys or what sorrows…what new memories will be made or what old ones I will be reminded of. I do know Who holds me together and Who will always be with me…no matter what…my heavenly Abba, my Creator. I choose to walk. I choose to trust. Whatever comes with each new day…I will be given whatever I need to handle it.

I hope this post makes sense to others and that it helps someone else. I know it helps me to get things out. I wish I could write more…but I am keeping someone else awake. This is my best uninterrupted time…but it is also not my free time.  There is a weight hanging over me. *sigh* Maybe I can write more tomorrow. We will see.

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How Do I Feel, a Webinar and Random Thoughts

April 13, 2010

That is the question that has haunted me most of my life. How do I feel? Most of the time I was clueless as to how I really felt. Taught all of my life to deny my feelings, I had no idea how to even really identify them…unless, of course, they were felt intensely. Anything that was not felt intensely, forget it. I had no idea what I was feeling. And intense feelings were verboten. Stuff. Hide. Deny. But do NOT feel…and, if you do…NEVER show it!

It took me a long time to get to the point of beginning to recognize feelings. One thing that helped me was locating lists of feeling words on the internet. As I looked over the lists, I found that I started to relate to them. Little by little, I started to connect what I was “feeling” to the words. I have used those word lists to do art projects to help get my feelings out of the deep well inside and up to my conscious mind.

I need to locate those lists on the internet again for a webinar I will be doing in August. As a non-artist, I will be showing how I used art in my healing and word lists are a part of that. I want to give the people who come to the webinar all the resources I can to help them.

So…how do I feel…right now? I am not sure. Ha! How is that for a typical answer? At the moment, I think I have reached a place of basic contentment. I am OK with my world. How long that will last…who knows? I am ready for my class today, so I guess that qualifies as “confident”? “Prepared”? Is “prepared” a feeling? I think maybe it is. I feel “ready”!

I am getting my hair cut today, so I feel “anticipation”. And, maybe, a bit “nervous”. I don’t have much hair and it is difficult to do much of anything with it. I am trying something a little bit different.

How have I been feeling lately? Well…I have been busy…trying to get some things done.  And that has left me feeling a bit “frustrated” at times. My CPU is not fast enough (big enough?) for the programs I need to run. Having to run only one or two programs at a time for this multi-tasking woman is frustrating. However, I am grateful to have my laptop and to be able to run them at all!

My living situation causes me to be frustrated at times…well…sometimes it is frustration, but mostly I think it is more like “resignation”. I have to remember (and accept) that there are things I simply cannot do in this environment. Looking ahead, hopefully our situation will change over the summer. That will be great…if it happens.

If it happens, it will make it easier for me to get photos of the artwork I will need to share in the webinar. If it does not, I may be scrambling to do it elsewhere. Timing can be everything. I hope we are not moving during webinar time. Yikes! So, I stay in today. While the future is floating around in my mind somewhere, I do not focus on it. I pay it just enough attention so that I will be prepared and ready when the times comes to do the webinar, but not enough attention that I begin to fret over things that are beyond my control. And, if I need to, I can put the webinar off.

I am actually doing pretty well for this time of year. As my birthday approaches, I am sure it will start to hit more. My birthday is the anniversary of my sister’s death…a death that may have been a warning to me. And, sometimes, I wonder if she is even really dead. It did not look like her and my father would not allow me to be alone with her. I know they can stage those things. Did they? Do they have her hidden somewhere? I hate to even think of it. So, I pray for her…just in case.

Anyway, these are random thoughts, some attempted expressions of feelings, a bit of an update. What I feel can change on a moment’s notice. So, I am going to post this before what I feel changes…again.

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My Sister

February 16, 2010

My sister had a brave heart. She was beautiful and childlike. She was a fighter who would not give up. She was trapped…caught in an unseen web that was too sticky for her to break free from. They had her where they wanted her.

My sister ran away from one cult family right into the arms of another…but she didn’t know. Neither of us did. At that time, we were both amnesic to our true history.

I wonder…did she ever figure it out before she died? Did she finally remember her childhood abuse…the younger years? Did she remember “everything”…or just the minor “stuff” she used as an excuse to run away?

My sister kept trying…in recovery and out of it. I remember her telling me how she had to fight with the recovery people to get her a counselor. She kept saying she needed one, but they did not want to give it to her…not even in those fancy, high class, expensive recovery places.

Was it because it was being paid for by his parents? After all…counseling might mean that she would remember something…something important…something damning…about them. Maybe she would finally wake up to the truth about her boyfriend and his parents…the family she lived with. Or…maybe she wanted a counselor because she already had an inkling of the truth? I will never know in this life.

This is the time of year that I especially think of my sister…as her birthday approaches in a couple of days. And I wonder about her death…and sometimes, I wonder if she even really died…or if they have her holed up somewhere. It didn’t look like her. And my father would not leave me alone with her. If he had…what would I have done? I don’t know. We weren’t supposed to touch the body…but I think I would have. It did NOT look like her. I had seen her within the last year.

My father said it did, but he had not seen her in years…so far as I know. But then…it is not exactly like I came from a truthful family. Ha! “Family”. What is THAT supposed to be? Not the caricature I grew up with.

It’s funny how everything seemed to be so good…on the outside looking in. All the memories I concocted about growing up seemed so OK…yet I was so not OK.  Stories my mother told me were woven through my mind with photos from the family albums. Childhood. Sure…that was my childhood…only…it wasn’t.

I remember the day I suddenly realized that it was all a lie…a fantasy. It has been so long now that I cannot remember if it was before or after I realized that I could not remember growing up with my sister. It is as if she did not exist…yet I know for fact she was there…in the same house with me.

So many things are buried in the mists of amnesia with a tiny flash of a snippet here and there that blazes through so fast that I can barely figure out what just went by. Yet…those flashes ARE there. And I do have the photographs. My sister was there. Some of the photos I took…yet, I can barely see anything beyond the photos themselves. Whatever I see is more like a surreal picture in my mind.

She died on my birthday. At least…I am told she died. I saw what was supposed to be her body…but it sometimes haunts me to this day. I know she was becoming “inconvenient”. I would not put it past them to agree behind closed doors while pretending to hate each other to me. Two families…warring for her body. It was sick. It was insane. It was my sister.

I will never get the chance to get to know her. Her living…except for the few times in the later years when I finally did meet up with her…is buried deep within. What I do remember makes me wonder if I really want to remember the rest. I don’t know. Maybe I should just create a life with her just like I created a life of my own? No…I want to honor her by remembering the truth…if I can.

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Thoughts on the Time of Year

October 25, 2008

What a time! I love the Autumn. It is my favorite season…on the outside. On the inside, I hate this time of year. I know what happens at the end of October and I hate it!

Most of the time I can push it to the back of my mind and heart. Yet…it always comes up. Somewhere, somehow, the thought of the children comes to mind…and I find myself fighting tears and lifting up a prayer for them.

What do I pray for? Well, I would like to think He would stop the whole hideous thing, but I know that is not realistic. It is not because God is not big enough, or strong enough, to stop it. It is because He is bound by His own rules. He gave us humans the ability to choose between good and evil, between doing what is right and doing what is wrong. Gentleman that He is, He won’t go back on His word. We were given choice and until He comes back and removes evil once and for all, we will have people committing evil acts.

So, no, I don’t really pray for Him to stop it…at least not very strongly. I do pray for Him to intervene. I pray for Him to protect the hearts and souls of those who will have to endure this time. I pray for Him to protect them from the pain and to take them quickly home. I pray for supernatural comfort to the victims.

I also pray for Him to open the eyes of the good people who are too afraid to take a real and serious look at what is going on around them. For those who are willing to see, I pray that He will open their hearts and give them courage to take a stand. Yet, I hold out little hope for that happening.

If people won’t even take a stand to stop the culture of death we can see so openly, how can I expect them to work to stop the hidden deaths? When people, including babies, are “legally” sacrificed through abortion and through starvation in the “medical” system on the altar of convenience and money…right out in the open, how can there be concern for the children and people being sacrificed in hidden rituals? They are all being sacrificed…whether openly or in secret and the temporary prince and ruler of this earth is laughing at the stupid humans who are serving him through these (and other) practices.

My heart always breaks when I think of these things. However, this time of year I am more keenly aware of it all. It is a reminder to me that this is not my true home. My true home in with God in His kingdom. What is to come after all this ugliness is a beauty so incredible that those who have seen it and come back are unable to adequately describe it. That is what I long for.

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Disappointments & Perspective

August 9, 2008

Sometimes it just feels like life dumps on you. Disappointments pile up. Lost dreams. Betrayals. Hurts. Sickness. Lost jobs. Lost friends. Feelings of abandonment. It can be really hard to keep a right perspective about things.

I guess one of those right perspectives is that everyone goes through stuff. There is nothing that I can experience that someone else…in fact many someone elses…have not also gone through. Sometimes it seems like there is an inequality about how much stuff gets dumped on us. It seems like some people get a whole lot more than others. But is that really true? I don’t know.

I do know that there can be many things that we don’t see on the outside. There can be many pains and hurts and burdens that only the person going through it really knows about.

I seriously doubt that there is anyone who has not felt the sting of being hurt by a friend…or who has not been disappointed by a family member. Who has never lost a job? Or never gotten sick? There are some who have never felt the sting of the death of a loved one…but I daresay that most of us have, especially if we are “older”. Some, sadly, have experienced that at a very young age.

I need to keep my trials in perspective. I am not being beaten…currently. I am fairly healthy…as in I have no life threatening or serious persistent health problems. I am not starving…I have food to eat. I have shelter…I am not living in a cardboard box or under an overpass…or in a refugee camp. I am not being tortured or raped for my spiritual beliefs. Hmmm…maybe I don’t have it so bad after all?

There are hurts in life. Everyone has them. I must learn to work through them and move on. I don’t know if that is more of a challenge than it is for most folks because of what I have gone through as a survivor…or not. I guess we can all struggle with letting go of things.

I know that, for me, I am challenged right now to work through something. It is one of those situations where I don’t know if I can fully delve into the deep emotions connected with this until I move away from the whole place where it happened. Right now, I have to stay connected to that place and I think it is making it harder for me to work through it.

However, I won’t give up trying. I need to work through the anger. Those deep emotions keep getting triggered inside…bringing tears to the surface. I need to work through this so that a root of bitterness does not grow. I don’t want to hate…yet I feel the anger pushing to the surface and I find myself tempted to say “I hate”. I really don’t want to go there. I want my heart to be free…not locked in a prison of hatred and bitterness.

Nope…I don’t want to go there. I must find a way to work through…and truly forgive.

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