It's an ongoing grief but I am feeling again that sadness about losing the family that I once thought that I had.
It's a familiar ache in my chest and a hollow feeling in my gut. I feel like a little lonely girl again as I reflect on how emotionally distant my first family is from one another. I feel abandoned, disappointed, guilty, and embarrassed. Not embarrassed of my family's situation, it's a fairly common one. I'm embarrassed about how I believed we were good. I'm embarrassed that I had the wool pulled over my eyes. Embarrassed that I had misguided pride, that I let myself be deceived.
I know it's a dramatic analogy, but I have this image in my mind of a soldier who went to war as a younger man. He was a passionate soldier who was all for his cause. Then he ages and reflects back, realizes that he fought for the wrong side or that there are no right sides at all, and he feels bad. Not so much for what he did but for believing in it so wholeheartedly at the time.
I'm not sure why, but the pain of believing stings more than the silly things I did or said. Comparing our family to others as a way to bolster our false confidence, acting like our cutting sarcastic humor was a sign of closeness; those things were done out of misinformation, someone forced my hand, peer pressure etc., but me believing something... that's too personal. It feels all my fault, a total blunder, or if it was also forced, far too personal or too much of a violation to bear.
I feel so broken and confused sometimes. Is astounds me, the power of childhood experience. Years have passed, I've learned so much, grown, matured, changed and yet these memories still pain me so. How is it our little selves can withstand such things while our adult selves are so tortured by the mere memories, reflections!?
I hope that the books are right, that if I take good care of Baby now he will be a strong, functional, emotionally sound adult. I hope he can be spared this pain, yet I don't know what that would look like, if it's even possible. I know everyone goes through growing pains and their own emotional/spiritual journey, but where is the line between normal and dysfunctional?
How much pain is enough?
On a more positive note, I think my family is finding a new (better) normal as my siblings and I grow up and out into our worlds. I've been working on my boundaries and I feel like we're moving in a new direction little by little. Where we'll end up, who knows, but despite the discomfort, I'm all right with this.