Wednesday, December 16, 2009

dear family

as we're sitting here, days away from christmas, we are now stewing in some very bitter angry juices. i don't know if other families go through this like we do. there is so much hurt and anger toward each other, simmering underneath our day to day facades, and when it bubbles to the surface, as it always does, it is never good.

we've been down this road many, many times over the years. everyone holds their tongue for a while and then some how someone drops a match, it catches a pile of leaves on fire and the next thing you know the whole damn house burns down. again. it's like we're pyromaniacs.

none of us are perfect. all of us get our feelings hurt. some of us carry hurt around with us for decades, like a worn out old suitcase that we occasionally open quickly to stuff something else in. all of us have a bag. some are long, some are full, they're all tattered and torn. we've each found our own ways to carry these loads but for the most part we do it in silence as we're a very passive agressive bunch.

we've been saddled with these loads for so long that sometimes we actually forget about them, they've become such a part of us. then, if we start getting too close to each other our bags get in the way, a zipper pops on one and the next thing you know all of the insides are swarming together in a pile we can't quite understand.

i think it is time to realize that we will never be the family each of us wanted. it is the expectations we have that are killing us. there are things you should be able to expect from your family--support, love, protection, understanding, loyalty--and for whatever reason, in our family, all of those things have not always been there. maybe love, love might be the only constant, because, even if we don't like each other there is love. we may not always show it or feel it, but i suppose it is always there.

i can't control any of you. i can't make you feel something you don't or do something you don't want to do. i also cannot make myself feel something i don't feel. i am getting very tired of carrying my bag, though honestly i don't know how to let it go.

i don't really understand what it is exactly that we are striving for. we're reaching for some illusive ideal of what family is, because god knows we've never had a picture perfect, hallmark card rendition of family. i don't think anyone does. we are what we are. we keep trying and failing to be something we aren't so maybe it's time we just live with what we are. we are a dysfunctional family. our rule of thumb should be to contain that as much as possible.

2 comments:

only a movie said...

I'm sorry there is so much drama in your family right now. We have some toned down, perhaps hiding in the dust, sort of drama. Further removed and probably won't be ignited next week.
But I feel that tension.
Hang in there. Email me if you need to vent further...

Not Your Aunt B said...

My stomach is in knots for you. Is anyone's family a picture perfect family? If it is, it is only in photos. The thing about dysfunction is it is so hard to transition to normal function because everyone is so used to dysfunction. That's what my husband says anyways. My family on the other hand is blatantly honest, which is nice but can bite you in the butt too. Sigh. Hope it all gets resolved or tones down at least before next week!