As my vacation comes to a close, I'm feeling very introspective.
I came home to Oregon to see family members I hadn't seen in 6+ years ...
Family for me is a difficult and vague term. I did not grow up in a traditional family setting. It was pretty freaking broken. As I grow older, I realize just how broken it really was. I realize why it took me so long to realize my childhood was so fucked - because I'd never drawn the line. The line between childhood to adulthood. I couldn't draw the line because my childhood has haunted me all the way into adulthood.
There have been situations, moments and people in my life in the last year or so who've helped me immensely in closing the doors to my past. In recognizing that the things that happened to me were not actually a result of who I am, or who I was as a child, I was able to change the direction of my life.
Choice is incredible. You can choose to identify with the things that have happened to you, or you can choose to not. I was identifying, and wearing these labels like giant cloaks for the longest time.
Motherless daughter. Abandoned by her father. Discard. Unlovable.
What happens when a child believes bad things happen to them because they're a bad person? They carry this mindset with them into adulthood.
It took a lot of hard hits, and finally moving around the world before I was able to see this.
If only lessons like this could be learned by a book picked up at Barnes and Noble, or a few sessions of therapy. Nope, I needed the punch in the face first hand.
So here I am, heading home after a week of spending time with my family. And I realize many of them still see me with the cloaks I wore for so long. It seems they identify more with what happened to me than I do. Pity. Sadness.
The truth is, no one expected my siblings and I to amount to much of anything.
It's no wonder "going home" is so hard.
The truth is - there is NOTHING FOR ME in the past.
There are people who are proud of their upbringing. Their parents. Their last name. They tell humorous and happy stories in front of the fireplace on Christmas morning. That is not me.
There is only one way out for me - and that's forward. You are not your past or the holes you had to dig your way out of, you are where you are going.