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Posts Tagged ‘Mom’

Last night while driving with three of my kids to the video store I found myself talking about the mental abuse I went through most my life. I’ve never really labeled it that way before. It’s so easy to be misunderstood, but sometimes that’s life!

What sparked it was my twelve year old son being concerned for my health. I have irritable bowel syndrome and am often in discomfort. I had a stressful week and stress is a big IBS trigger. It’s not always about food.

My son wanted to know what caused it. So far no one has pin pointed the cause of IBS, but many have speculated it stems from stress.

So I told him about how I was never allowed to express myself, I learned to hold everything in. I told him about as a child I was shy and quite and by the time I started coming out of my shell my mom would take personal offence if I ever expressed negative feelings. My dad was more subtle with it, he knew how to put a guilt trip on you before you ever knew what was happening.

I told my son about how at the age of about nineteen I finally barfed my feeling out in front of several people. I was on a church trip and I got extremely sick and ended up breaking down emotionally. The church leader saw tears in my eyes which normally would embarrass me terribly and insisted I talk. One of the church ladies coaxed me and before I knew it I was virtually vomiting mass amounts of mental pain I had unknowingly held in for many year.

This all happened in a van caravan along the side of the highway from Chicago to Mississippi. My mom was in the van behind us but got an earful from the church leader because much of what I spilled out was about my parents. I had never “exposed” them before. I didn’t know how to say anything bad or negative about my parents. So this was quite a shock to her. She got very upset with me and brought it up off and on for years as if I had abused her.

My son then talked about how it was good the church leader and church lady helped me get that stuff out.

I then told him that it was good but sadly that was the last time it would happen. From then on I was under their wing and I was not allowed to be myself and express myself any longer with out rebuke and retaliation. Even in regard to other church members. I was often reprimanded for not standing up for myself. But, if I did, the people I stood up to would complain to the church leader and then he would rebuke me harshly usually saying I had meanness in me and use what I did as an example for many sermons there after. If you look up brain washing this is a common technique, btw.

I then told my son that I have been out of all that for about five or six years now and that while I have healed myself mentally and emotionally, physically it can take a while. I really believe holding in stress all those years is a big contributing factor to my current IBS condition. I told him I have improved, but I have a ways to go.

After hearing the initial story he let me know this was the first he ever know of this part of my past. I explained, and was thankfully backed up by my daughters, that I had indeed talked about it in front of him many times but he likely was to young to understand. I was happy he understood that.

He told me that if he had a time machine he would go back in time and fix all that for me. I just love it when my children show empathy, it’s lovely and heart touching. I mentioned I appreciated his empathy and he asked what that was so the girls and I told him. Then I mentioned something about him being empathetic and he thought I insulted him. After all empathetic has the sound of pathetic in it. We had a good laugh over that.

He wanted to help me heal mentally so I assured him I had. He seemed to be trying to find a way to help me. I thought it was really awesome that he was taking such a mature view of it all.

I told him that when I first got out of all that stuff I desperately wished for a time machine. I wanted so badly to go back and change things. But over time I found I knew so much more then ever before and I could relate to and help people cause I understood them due to my own past experiences. I realized that if time machines were real, I could never change anything. I value what I have learned and who I have become.

After securing in his mind that I have changed and I do now express myself and am mentally doing well he moved on to my health.

I let him know I was working on it. That it would take time. He then moved on to the issue of exercise… Oh dear! lol I admitted I was doing pretty bad with that at this time. He wanted to set up a schedule for me to go to the YMCA every day while him and his siblings were at school. There was actually a time I did that. I loved it! I wanted to work with his ideas but lately I have had an appointment for one of the four kids and or myself almost every weekday. When I finally have no appointments I am plum wore out. I don’t really mind the busyness, it’s just really hard to fit exercise in to it. I told him I am looking for a free or low priced working tread mill. I really believe at this time in my life that would benefit me and the kids as well. It is a subject that has been on my mind lately.

Levi’s autism causes him to be behind sometimes. But like many autistic kids, once he gets it he’s got it better then most and he’s got it forever. Often autistic kids are misunderstood as not having feelings. They do indeed have feelings but usually express them differently and have reasons other then the norm that cause them to become emotional. Because they have a need to understand things logically when they do become emotional they often do so from a very deep place inside of themselves.  I really enjoyed watching his sweetness last night. He was sensitive but not sad, just compassionate and wanted to be a part of helping his mom.

He told me after the conversation was about over what he does. He said when he wants to cry, it doesn’t mater where he is or who is around, he cries! And when he wants to yell, he yells and so on. This sort of behavior is often what gets autistic kids bullied. It’s difficult because as their parents we don’t want to change their realness, but, we do want to protect them. It’s a constant balancing act and is never a pat answer. He then told me that if I want to cry and other people don’t want me to that I should cry extra hard and loud. I love it!

my son and I

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I read a comment my mom made on one of her friends FB posts. It got me thinking.

First here is her friends post. I took out the names and places:

“You remember (name)? The mortician from (place) who buried (name), his brother. He visited Granny’s grave with y’all . anyway….he died this morning. Cancer, again won out. (Name) has a few days, the doctor said. The family has gathered around her.”

Here is my moms comment:

“ohhh….cancer never “WINS” over the Saints…but we all gotta go…unless we are here when Jesus returns…and if so…it’s gonna get mighty tuff around here….but the Saints will be what they should always be….loving each other & sharing everything with each other!”

Here are my thoughts in that regard:

My dad had dreams that we all took as being from the lord. When I think about the dreams they all had something to do with him not being good enough. That’s not the way it was said but that’s really what it all meant. It’s sad to realize he died thinking he didn’t do enough for Christ. And no one tried to argue with him, they went along with it.

Of course they weren’t from the “lord’ but I understand now they were likely from his own consciousness. Everyone saw him as a great guy and talented and stuff but he always saw himself as a failure. If our so called prophet of a leader back then was really a prophet he would have known this instead of going along with it. I mean really, now that I have my own brain it’s so obvious.

For my dad, cancer won, his disappointment in himself won, his fear of failure won. According to my mom he passed in utter terror. That is not a winning spirit, that is not a “saint” winning. My dad was a good man, he loved Jesus and dedicated his life to the ministry. From a Christian stand point, he believed Jesus was the only way to salvation, he was baptized, he believed in the gifts of the Holy spirit, he fed the poor and gave to the widows, he shared the gospel,  and so on. In that light, he was good enough. As a man in general, he had his faults but he meant well, he cared for people and he was loved and looked up to. Though he believed in the Lord Jesus Christ he didn’t believe in himself and that is what really mattered when he passed.

I’m not worried about him now. Where ever he may be I’m sure he has figured things out. Just cause cancer may have won in taking his life doesn’t mean one should give up. We’ve cured what was considered incurable things many times before and we have even legalized cures that were considered illegal before so there is still hope for those who are still with us. Until those issues are resolved though my hope is for people to achieve acceptance in them selves as well as belief and love. For many of us it’s the best we can do.

Well, that’s all I have to say about that… for now. Here’s some pics in his memory.

   The top pic was taken when we first moved aboard the Moonshadow in Oxnard Ca.  The bottom one is the Moonshadow in off of Avalon.

Random shots of my dad in Gloretta Bay, Ca.

My parents 25th anniversary in Coronado, Ca.

Me attacking my dad for some reason. lol

My folks at the laundry mat in Coronado, Ca.

My family posing at the Gloretta Bay Inn where the church we attended, Sonrise Christian Outreach, would meet when the conference rooms at the Hotel del Coronado were full.

My dad in his van.

My dad saw these kids at a fast food place and asked if he could take their picture. They said yes and went out side and posed for him.

My family at a wedding in San Diego.

My dad being silly.

My mom and dad and I after a collage play I was in.

My dad’s Marine pic.

My mom and dad.

My dad when he was a kid. His mom had him and his sisters in dance, acting, and singing classes so they could be movie stars. This is one of his head shots. He did his best to keep my sister and I out of the business. However, when it’s in your blood…

My family when I was born in Orange, Ca.

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My mom and elephants.

When I was little I remember this baby elephant in the back of a circus type truck at a gas station. He was being used to attract attention for the business. My mom pulled in and we got out to see him. My mom felt bad for him being in the city in that little truck being gawked at. When we got near the truck the baby elephant reached it’s trunk out to my mom and rapped it around her and pulled her close to him.

Another time we were at a zoo and the elephant ride elephant was on break. He was munching on something on the other side of the walking field. My mom started calling him and the trainer told her that people do that all the time but the elephant never ever comes to them. My mom kept calling and the elephant walked right over to her. It really upset the trainer.

When we would visit the elephant exhibit at the zoo’s the elephants would always come to her and people would either be amazed or upset that she took the elephants attention.

My mom was the one who always pointed out nature to my sister and me. Though she felt the need to witness to those of other religions they never seemed to mind cause they could tell she really loved them and seemed to listen to them as well. If they didn’t convert she didn’t write them off.

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