Thursday, March 25, 2010

Snapping out of it


Mostly back to the land of the (relatively) sane. I have forgotten what a roller coaster PMS takes you on. I'm happy to report that the slide was only emotional and did not affect my food plan/recovery. I'm still on track and kind of excited to weigh in tomorrow. Is that sick?? *insert huge grin*

Last night's OA meeting was interesting. I made a connection I hadn't made before. I was talking about the fact that it's very difficult, nearly impossible, to give myself credit for anything. One of the women asked me why I thought that was. My immediate answer went to my early relationship with my dad. He was abusive. Physically. Spanked us every day. Was very violent and an angry man. We could do NOTHING right. No matter how hard we tried, we still got beat on a daily basis. But we still tried. Schoolwork, housework, homework, we strived for perfection thinking that one day he would approve, we would be good enough, and he would stop the torture. But it never happened.
I remember his yellow van. Just thinking about it makes my chest tight, my heart race, and stomach churn. We would get home from school, do our homework, chores, start dinner, and wait. We were latchkey kids from early on. I was in second grade. We lived at the end of a road so there wasn't much traffic. And while we had a garge around the back of the house, he would always park in front. And the pressure was on as soon as he pulled up. Did we do enough, were our clothes ok, was our schoolwork up to his standards?? Evey single day we waited to be inspected, criticized, berated, yelled at, and spanked. We kept trying. As young children it NEVER occured to us that his bar was above our reach, that his standards were not realistic, that his disappointment was permanent. As kids we kept trying every single day. And failing. Every single day.
My dad's standards are now my own. Not for anyone else in th world except me. I'm never good enough, I'm never deserving, I'm not worthy of praise or reward.
At least today's tears are not hormone related, they are tears of growth and understanding.
As children, even as adult children, we defend our parents. We HAVE to believe they did their best. It's safer that way. But why are we protecting them??? What have they done to protect us? I'm angry with my father for how he treated us. But to what end? He has no idea just how his actions affected me. None. He has tried to apologize but I don't WANT his apology. To what end? What's done is done. Healing is my job, forgiving is my job, being angry won't change anything. Being sorry certainly hasn't.

So now my job is to forgive myself. To see myself how God sees me. Beautiful in all my imperfections. Talented and hard working. Able and willing to try and keep trying. He loves me as I am. And if I am good enough for Him, why isn't that good enough for me?



Jennifer said...

Hi LauraLynne - I'm new here and found you on Drazil's blog.
It sounds like you are doing great on your search for growth and understand. Reading this post brought tears to my eyes, as I can relate. I grew up with a bi-polar mother. I remember trying every day to make her happy and be good enough for her.

Sandy Lee said...

Hi Laura Lynne-so glad you are getting some insight. I agree that sometimes we have to move on from the past so good luck with working it out. It will take time. We are here to listen.

Lisa said...

wow. GREAT post. I can learn from this.

amandakiska said...

Wow - that is really powerful. The sad thing is that I bet your dad never felt good enough for his own standards either. He sounds like a very unhappy man. Good for you for realizing that you were applying his criticism to yourself.

Amy said...

My hubby had a home that sounds alot like yours, LL... wow! His was a passive father who was never home, and a severely abusive mother. He was the oldest of all 6 kids, and she let it all out on him if everything wasn't right.

Beautiful beautiful quote at the end of your post about forgiveness... wow! So so true!

Thankykou again for sharing your heart.

Drazil said...

Oh LauraLynne - this post makes my heart hurt for you. You should read Dr. Laura S's book about Bad Childhood to Good Life or something like that. It tells exactly how to heal from a childhood like yours. I'm so sorry for what you went through and sorry you felt you were never good enough - you were and you are - and I'm so happy to have found you. I want to go to OA with you - I'm learning so much through you. Your childhood pain wasn't all in vain - look at those of us you are helping now! Smooches - keep it up.