Sister

I wish I could peek in your mind and see what you hide

There are moments I see where the real you resides

My dearest half-sister we are so far away

not just in our age, also in how we behave

But there are actions of yours, opposite of mine

that lead me to think it’s finally time

For me to reach out and actually ask

about the awful things in our past

But your telling me no, and refusing my help

saying I need to leave you to yourself

So now that the past is affecting your present

you want me to be there, but I won’t consent

I too am broken, and need some healing

I just can’t be here when you aren’t listening

I’m afraid that what I’ve done is just too much

that you’ll never be open to my rules and such

But I want you to know, if ever that changes

that I will be here to listen to all of the rages

Not just to theirs, but to mine as well

even when I hurt and the tears start to swell

Should that day not come, and our bond break

I hope you know that it is never too late

I am still broken, but now I am ready

to be the support you need to be steady

What happened to us, is not our fault

we don’t have to pretend our heart is a vault

That the lies we’ve been telling are not the end

that we really are worthy of the love that we spend

You are a human with faults and trauma

who always seems to be starting the drama

but if you ever decide to give that up

To open the vault and let it erupt

I’m here to listen and honestly say

that I’m sorry our family treated you this way

That the shit in our past doesn’t negate

all the awesomeness we have innate

You’re strong and great, it’s time you know too

that Ashlee I am actually very proud of you

The fact we survived, is more than most

and I will never forget the hurt we host

This gift I give you is the wisdom of time

even if it came in this strange rhyme:

Don’t let your past define your future

You dear are stronger than our abuser

 

 

Daddy Dearest

To my Dearest Father,

Where were you? I needed you.

Your absence in my life has caused me more paid than I can even begin to explain. I  know I have said over and over again I didn’t need you, but that was never true. I was trained from birth to be strong, to be independent, to not show weakness. I had to create a brick wall around myself and my feelings. I became so strong I was made of stone. No one came in, nothing mattered. I could cut anyone out at any time and never let anyone know I needed them. Why? Because I don’t know how to need someone, I don’t know how to trust. I needed my father to show me what love from a man looked like, and without that I became hollow inside.

I was abused by my uncle for as long as I can recall. I developed an eating disorder at 9, and lied my way through middle school. I allowed a boyfriend to beat me. I allowed myself to be assaulted by an older male boss in high school. I was groomed by a much older man from when I was 15. I was drugged in college and almost assaulted. I have abused others because I thought that was “love”, and let loved ones abuse me thinking I deserved it. I am broken from what happened to me and having no one to talk to. I never had a male figure in my life I could trust and so I never learned that men were trustworthy. I self sabotaged my marriage and every relationship I had because “all men will leave you in the end”.

I became very good at wearing a mask of independence and strength. I had to learn to turn off my emotions, otherwise I would have crumbled. I had very strong female role models, but none to show me what love and trust really look like. I missed the bond that every girl craves, and by the time a semi-solid male figure showed up I was already well trained to not NEED a man… so I didn’t let him in either. I don’t blame you for what happened to me, nor do I blame my family. It’s MY story, it’s part of who I am… but it’s not who I am anymore. I have been working really hard in the last two years since taking over my Grandmother’s care and I want you to know.

I want you to know that it did hurt me to not have you. It hurt every time I thought you would show up, and didn’t. It hurt me to watch you blame my mom, my aunts, and everyone else but yourself that we didn’t have a relationship. You need to know at the end of the day, that was on you. You could have made it happen, you were my father. You knew where I lived, you knew my grandmother loved you, and you knew my mom worked. You could have come come for me… I wish you did. I wish you were at my wedding, I wish I could have have that moment. I didn’t need you to give me away, but I needed to know a father’s love before entering into a lifelong commitment. It hurt my heart that you didn’t even send a card or a note. You didn’t even acknowledge the biggest moment in my life. I didn’t need you there, but I wanted you there. I never said that to anyone because I thought it would make me look weak, and I was never that on the outside.

But I am on the inside, I’m still that little girl who didn’t get to have her daddy in her life. Father daughter dances make me crumble. I cry and I can’t stop it. Every wedding I go to reminds me that I’m still without that love. I hate that this makes me look weak, and I don’t want people to know but I have to get it out or I won’t heal… and that’s what I’m trying to do. I’m growing now. Now that I am free from the chains that tie me to my abuse and my abusive thoughts I am becoming a woman… and I forgive myself and I forgive you. I know you did the best you could with what you had. That you were broken too and just child yourself then. I understand why, and while I wish it wasn’t true, it is.

I never showed you how grateful I was for the times you were there. For the car, for inviting me into your home, and giving me another extended family. I didn’t know how to react to it then, but I am thankful for it now. While neither of us can go back and fix the past, I need you to know that it hurt me. I need you to know what it did to me, and that I’m sorry I hurt you, and that I hope all can be forgiven, even if it will never be forgotten or fixed. I need to me able to move on with my life and I can’t without getting it out.

I don’t know if we’ll ever be close, I don’t know if my sisters will ever be friends of mine. It’s the situation and decisions you made in the beginning, but we both made in the end that brought us here. I hope you can take responsibility for your decisions, as I have for mine. I hope that knowing that frees you a little bit too. I love you dad, even if I’ll never really be able to show you the way you want to see it. And now I know you love me, even though you may never show me the way I want you to. You hurt me, but I can now see beauty in the darkness and pain. It made me who I am today, and while I’m still a work in progress I am proud of what I’ve done so far.

Love,

The Daughter (you left behind)

 

 

Goodbye Letters

*Trigger Warning* I am safe, but these letters can invoke some sadness. Please be cautious if you are triggered by suicide.

To my Dearest Best Friend,

I moved away a long time ago, but this is the final time I message you. I will miss you, I hope that now your little family will keep you strong. My absence from your life will not be felt long, please love that little man more than anyone else in the world.

You were someone whom I could really trust, and I think the only person who never let me down. I will always remember the kindness and love you showed me. I treasure all that you did and am thankful I had someone in my life like you.

Sincerely,

Me

 

To my Mom,

I hope the money you put before all of us keeps you warm now that I am gone. You were not there for me like we needed, you let me fall, and treated me like a Parent rather than the child. I loved you so much, I thought we would be friends one day, but your actions during Grandma’s transition and passing showed me otherwise. I hope you wake up and realize before it’s too late for Ash and James… you need to step up and be a better mom.

Sincerely,

Angel Face

 

To my Siblings,

I’m sorry. I’m sorry I couldn’t save you, I’m sorry I was such a bad sister. I tried to be mom and sister for you guys but it never really worked out the way I wanted it to. I love you both, and you were one of the only reasons I hung on as long as I did. I hope that this gives mom and Mike the wake up they need to be there for you like they should be.

Remember, you are stronger than I am. You can and will make it… just hang onto each other.  Stay in each other’s corner. Help each other.

Sincerely,

Me

 

To my Spouse,

I release you from your ties to my awfulness. You have stayed with me through the worst and while I wish I could say it was enough to make me stay. In the end it was this that made me walk away. I truly feel like nothing more than a burden to you. That you are staying with me out of pity, or just out of boredom. I feel like your heart has been elsewhere since Mike’s passing and I am too far gone to reach it.

Either all these things were true, or I am really that crazy… and we know the answer to that. So I’m doing you this favor. You’re sadness will be short and will bring a creative wave that will launch that career you want. Your friends will gather and help you through this time, and your true love will finally arrive.

I Loved you with everything I had, till the last breath of my body. I wish I was stronger, I wish I was the one, I wish that this pain was fixable… but none of that is true. I am too broken to be Loved the way I Love you. Thank you for everything.

Sincerely,

Chrysalis

 

 

The Anxiety Gremlin

All day pacing the halls of records, touching each instance of good with her uncertainty

Which memory shall I ruin today, she bellows down the caverns of my mind

Running her long razorlike nails against the title on each cover she stops for a moment

“Do I dare?” She questions under her breath as she pulls out the album out

No dust here, I come often to look at this but typically its in bad times

I draw on my experiences this day as they are true to my heart

They ground me, keep me sane

“Please don’t” the wind whispers and she opens the page…

 

Small Miracles

A small shout out to my Fairy Godmother, Frigg, whomever… thank you.  Sometimes you get so busy with your life’s journey that you forget there are side quests to be completed.

Months ago this blog was set up to be a writing space for my husband and I to work on our marriage and our book, but as soon as the ink dried on my account my husband decided to walk away.

Not just from the book, or the blog, but from the marriage as a whole. I was shocked, but it wasn’t deterred.  Rather than just revel in my own pity, I decided to make the most of this and write about the deterioration instead.

Well, thank you world for the slap in the face I needed. Thank you for showing me how far away from my center I was, and thank you for giving me the opportunity to grow and learn from it, no matter how painful it has been.

In the last several months I have been on a journey, and I am still in its midst. I am growing beyond the cocoon of trauma I was forged in… and the results must now be visible to others.

How can I tell? I just lived a small miracle… my husband said to me on Sunday “you know we should really write that book”.  And I’ve never been happier… or more terrified.

hes-not-wrong-you-know

The Letter

My Dearest,

You always write for me, but I have never really returned the favor to you. In small ways I’ve written a few things, way way back… but you deserve so much more than that. I have been a shitty wife for several years, and I want to acknowledge and formally apologize for treating you terribly. There was a long time where I forgot just how amazing you are, and what my priorities are.  I will work daily to ensure that I never take you and our love for granted again.

I’m sorry for hiding my hurt behind anger, one-upmanship has been a never ending cycle of who can hit the hardest and we both lose.

I’m sorry for putting you at the bottom of my priority list time and time again. You should have always been at the top, and very often you were at the bottom.

I’m sorry for cutting you down and not being in your corner always. My low self-esteem makes me want to cut you down so you won’t realize you are so much better than I.

I’m sorry for neglecting our time and our sex life. I got so busy dealing with everything else that I forgot how necessary it is for both our moods and marriage.

I’m sorry for not attending his services. I will never be able to go back and push harder to take the time, I only hope I can help you continue to grieve.

I’m sorry for my family and what it has done to us. I am working every day to be further and further away from them and to add more close friends to my circle.

I’m sorry for being fake and letting myself get so wrapped up in shit that I didn’t even realize I didn’t care about.

But most of all, I’m sorry I hurt you and made you feel lonely in your own home. No one ever deserves that.

I hope that my continued growth as a person is still someone you want to be married to every year from here on out. I will just be me, and treat you the way you should be treated by a wife that adores you. That is proud to say she is married to you. A wife that puts her man in his place when he needs it, but only behind closed doors. Who holds him up and falls into his arms just as easily.

I LOVE YOU

Always yours… Mrs. Chrysalis

 

What does it take?

I wondered many times at what was the secret of a long happy marriage. I see couples that I would aspire to be like, and I see the ones that last and last. I see the ones that make it, and not because both parties are complacent (I’ve seen that too and I’m not a fan myself.) but because they grow together.

Love is an action as much as it is a feeling, a description of what we feel and what we do. I hear some people say that “true love doesn’t need this much work”, “we weren’t a match”, “we grew apart”… I would sit and think about how people could let that happen. I was of the mind that a great marriage takes work, not hard work all the time, but work none the less. That you got out of your relationship what you put in, and if you really loved someone you would find a way to work it out.

But what happens when one person decides they no longer want to do the work, what about when one person drops the ball and the other one gets tired of picking it up? One person should be able to do it alone for a little while, but when days and weeks turn into months and years you build up animosity, anger, resentment, and abandonment.

Now I realize that I’m not 100% to blame for what happened in our marriage, but I know I was a big part of it. I’m willing to take the steps to become a better person, a better partner, a better wife. I know he still isn’t in love with me, at least not the me he has in his mind, and I know it’s impossible to change someone’s mind… but what about a heart?