Father-Daughter 😢

Our relationships with our parents are so fundamental to who we become as adults. I had a moment last night, watching Trouble With The Curve, which I’ve watched a heap of times, where I burst into tears, saying, “That’s me.”

Amy Adams’ character, Micky, confronts her dad, Clint Eastwood, about his rejection of her as a young girl. Her dad, raising a young girl, on the road for work, after his wife/her mother died, finds himself out of his depth when Micky is touched inappropriately by a horse trainer.

He beats the crap out of the guy, waits for the police to come after him, and moves Micky to live with relatives because he thinks she will be safer.

He never tells any of this to Micky. Her perception is that she wasn’t good enough for him, and she spends her adult years trying to please him and gain his approval. He is oblivious to all of this. He loves her, but doesn’t know how to communicate that.

I just bawled. I rewound the scene to watch it a few more times. It never had impacted so deeply before.

My tears were for my same feelings relating to my dad. Seeking that validation. Our perceptions are interesting things. I can now see that we tend to remember that which hurts us more than that which makes us smile. As kids, with minimal scope for broad perspective, we internalize the negative and create narratives that really focus on the negative.

The violence (aka discipline) told me I had to behave a certain way to not be hit, and the goal posts here were always moving. I never knew where I stood. I was also taught that I was responsible for everyone else (my sisters’ behavior), and that I wasn’t good enough if they misbehaved and I hadn’t stopped them. I also learned that I was different to my sisters. They were the pretty ones.

As a teen, who wasn’t overweight, but was a different build to my sisters, my dad would coax me to lose weight by offering me rewards. Looking back, I didn’t need to lose weight. I was fine. But, the narrative I was telling myself, that I perceived was being reinforced by the actions of my father, took over. And a key aspect of that, that I then internalized and still play over today, is that I am not good enough as I am.

I sense a list of memories are going to be made and Demartini’d very soon.

I now understand that my father’s context lead him to these choices. I now understand that self-worth is one of my lessons, that I chose, for this lifetime. However, the hurt was and is real.

That feeling of not being enough, not being valuable, not being deserving unless you meet another person’s criteria, is gut wrenching. My intellect was always validated by my father – I thrive here.

More work to be done.

Grieving is an unpredictable process 

It’s been a big week. And a difficult week in so many ways. I am emotionally exhausted. And through all of the events of this week I have had a quieter but ever present reel of dialogue and emotion playing in the background. 

I know that grieving is a process. And I know that it is normal for triggers to release more healing opportunities as your footing becomes more solid, each time your footing becomes more solid. And I know that one day the triggers for a broken heart will become less because I will have made complete peace with the loss. 

But this week I have been very sensitive to babies, talk of babies, talk of miscarriage, talk of pregnancy. This week I have wanted to curl up in a corner and just cry my heart out. 

And I haven’t. 

Until my drive home just now. 

I left my location quite suddenly. I could feel a shift in energy and knew I wasn’t going to be productive in that environment. It was time to leave. Tiredness suggests I shouldn’t have even gone out tonight. But, meh, it was dinner with extended family. 

Shortly into the night conversation turned to pregnancy and miscarriage. And this week, I’m not as at peace as I have been. These types of conversation have created underlying anxiety for me this week. My miscarriage has been tormenting me. 

More than that though, it has also given rise to a recurring series of decisions I make in phases. Quite probably the real issue that I need to resolve/learn from/be at peace with. 

I am not very good at all about talking about my issues. I don’t make much time for them. I made one attempt to talk this week, and that was successful but probably too short. So, I’m getting better. 

But the worrying aspect of me not talking is that I think it connects to my fear of being vulnerable, and then shunned, which would elevate my lack of feeling of self worth and value. There is a recess in my mind that tells me continually (and I foolishly listen) that I am here to serve others. That is my purpose and where my worth and value as a human being resides. 

Pfft. 

Intellectually I know this is bollocks. Emotionally … Hmmm. And so, in a week where I probably needed to hide in the forest, I have continually given of myself, even when I didn’t want to or wasn’t up to it. And not one of those situations has been successful. I have depleted what energy I had and I have been involved in several instances where I have laid things out as I have seen them in a cold manner. 

And that doesn’t help anyone. 

When I have said I need a break or I really can’t do that, I have allowed myself to be coerced into acting against my better judgement. Because I am here to serve others. And the underlying dialogue to that is, I am not worth as much as you and my needs aren’t as important as yours.

And no good has come of it. 

Oprah, I’m hearing the whisper now 😉.