So my friend David kicks my ass. There’s just no bullshitting him. Which is good. And yannow, scary. But considering I’m all about facing down fear these days, and he’s the peroxide for the wound – it’s worthy pain.
After my shame post he emailed:
Shame…yes…we talked about shame… Shame is best friends with guilt and worry. All three are trigger emotions…telling you to act. What are you supposed to do? What are your feelings telling you to do?
Believing in yourself is a start, but it is a state of mind resulting from something. The real question is the shame…the uncool…the “why do I feel uncool.”
I believe that I was never enough for my dad. He always wanted a tribe of kids and mom decided parenting me and parenting him was enough. He moved on to 2nd wife and her 3 boys – by middle school I believed he put them before me (took them out and taught them to play golf – gave me a club and a ball and a vhs tape – when I had no vcr at mom’s) – So I trigger as “less than” with Scout and with Alex and with The Dude whenever I perceive a threat. (in the form of old girlfriends with Scout, being the “less fave parent” with Alex, and the tatskank with The Dude.)
And what are your beliefs now?
Well fuckaduck. So tried to articulate . . . because my beliefs are moving target right now. All part of that figuring out who I am thing. So here is my reply with his comments:
I believe I was a fucking idiot for ever thinking the ex-wife would be kind to me when it wouldn’t benefit her.
Is it worth considering that you are just kind and willing to give others more chances than they, you?
I believe my dad loved everyone but me.
Is it worth considering that your father may have been only capable of line-of-sight love?
I believe I better quit looking to others to make me feel worthy. Be my own best friend, all that stewart smalley bullshit.
Stuart Smalley had a lot figured out…
I believe I need to give Alex the focus I want for myself.
Be the best mom you CAN be. If you learn more about yourself and learn you can be more…then be more. Don’t guilt yourself because you are not CAPABLE of more at the moment.
I believe my dad fucked me over by the way he left things when he died.
Your dad didn’t do it TO YOU…he just did it. It is cliched…but he its the one who missed out…
I believe my confidence is in the gutter and it’s practically a miracle I’m still standing some days.
I believe I am terrified of one. more. shit. thing happening to me because I don’t know if I can take anything more.
I believe I am ready for something happy to happen.
Make something happy happen.
It’s not easy to have that friend who tells me what I need to hear, rather than what I want to hear – but the flip side of knowing that he will never let me bullshit him, is knowing he will never bullshit me in return. So when he says things like “your dad is the one who missed out” – he says that knowing fully what he is saying and what it means to me – and I can believe the words he says and he writes.
I need that friend. I am thankful for that friend. And for his wife who shares her evenings with me so he can talk to me on the phone.
The shitty thing is that you are more than strong enough to handle one more shitty thing, but no one wants that. Here’s the rub…(I had to use that phrase, had to. Never have, never will again, but damn, did it here) If you avoid the shit, if you lurk in corners and dally in paths that you know are dead ends, you guarantee that you will deprive yourself and your future, of miracu-fucking-awesome-ness.
You are not what you have been, you are not how he treated you or didn’t, you are the epicenter of your promise and you need to set it free.
I think I’d like David. I like that he tells you the truth with love. Like “I love you enough not to let you continue to rub your own nose in your piddle spot” and “I love you enough to tell you your own value when you can’t see it and let it be a call to action.” Sure, you made some decisions that didn’t turn out to be in your best interests after all, but you did the best you could the information you had at the time. Who hasn’t been there? Now that you know better, you can do better.
As for Dad baggage, I’m with you–I haven’t seen my dead-beat father in 15 years. I held onto that baggage and lies a long time, til I realized I was still letting his actions and words control, humiliate, and impact me in how I lived my life as an adult. Some friends also helped me come to terms with the freedom of forgiveness (I wasn’t very receptive at first, to say the least.) I still don’t want him in my life, but I’ve decided that how he treated my mom, sister and I wasn’t about us, it was about him and his own brokenness. I don’t have to hold on to that hurt or pass it on. it was quite liberating. 🙂
Virtual hug and high five for (1) continuing to plug away at self reflection, discovery and tolerating negative feelings in order to grow, and (2) listening to and considering the advice of friends (and it takes a lot of humility to do that).
Why is Amanda always so poignant and gottdamn RIGHT? Love.