Tuesday, January 7, 2014

A letter to my 18 year old self

Jessie, Jessie, Jessie...

Ten years after your Mom married your stepdad, at a courthouse, where you objected, just accept that he is who he is.  Accept that he is mean and bitter and excruciatingly painful to be around, because he is unhappy with himself.  Either he was abused or neglected or maybe, he's mentally ill, but cut him some slack.  

That time that he went to your guidance counselor and asked for advice because he could not get through to you and did not know why you hated him so much, then your Mom called her sister to come babysit your siblings and you were stuck in a locked car in a grocery store parking lot with him and your Mom, until you would tell him why you did not like him... forgive him for that.  Perhaps he has a victim mentality and had no clue why in the world you do not like him.  

That time that you decided that all you wanted to watch on TV was The Cosby Show, because he would not allow it, because they were a black family.  And the years that you decided that you only wanted black friends, because he was the most prejudice person you know, forgive him for that.  Maybe that was the way he was raised and he has no desire to change.  

That time that he went digging through your purse and found a cigarette with the filter broken off and thought it was a joint, because it was always a jump to the worst possible conclusion, forgive him for that.  

The years that you sat in your bedroom absorbed in books, terrified to come out of your room, because you had no idea whether you were going to be yelled at, cussed at, ignored or treated nicely, it is time to let it go.  

The comment "We are not going to raise that child", when my Mom told my stepdad that we were expecting our first child, it is past time to let it go.  After years of verbal abuse, there is no way I would let him raise my child.  

The years that you felt neglected and abandoned, because your brother was diabetic and ADHD and needed more attention, let it go.  Mom was doing what she thought was best at the time.  Then when Mom and stepdad had their daughter and you were definitely forgotten about, forgive them.  

Cherish the time you have left with your grandparents on your Dad's side of the family.  Your Mom tried to poison your thoughts against both of them, but they are the ones that know what true love is.  They are the ones that have the most life experiences.  They are the ones that started from nothing and built a wonderful life for themselves.  Spend as much time as you can with them and soak in their knowledge, especially from your grandmother.  

Do not listen to your Mom when you tell her that you want to go to school and major in psychology and she says "Oh, you want to be just like your grandmother".  Or maybe say, yes, I would like to be just like her.  She was far from perfect, but family and helping other people were her priorities.  

When the psychiatrist tells you that if you would record your stepdad being verbally abusive and something could be done, you should have considered listening to him.  Letting fear get in the way of that, did nothing to benefit your teen years.  

When your stepdad plays the victim and complains to his family that you are not nice to him and his niece, who you admired, told you that if you could not be nice to him that you could not be friends with her, maybe you should have realized right then that there were some family problems.  

When your stepdad is telling you that you are fat and no man that weighs less than 500 pounds than you, maybe you should realize he has much larger of a problem than you.  When he is telling you that you are fat and if you get any bigger, your clothes are going to have to be handmade, when you are in a size large, do not listen to him.  

When he is the one there for you to cry on his shoulder when you do not make drill team and your Mom cannot be bothered to come, be thankful.  When he is at your dance recital rehearsals and once again, your Mom cannot be bothered to be there, be thankful.  

Remember that most of the time when people hurt you with their words, they have been hurt.  Hurt people hurt people.  Try not to take his words personally.  I know it is hard, but all of the flaws he is so good about pointing out in you, are pointed out either because he has the same problem, or it was something that he has dealt with.  

When he tries to give you all kinds of baby advice, just nod and agree.  Try to remember anything helpful and forget the rest.  

Remember that all of the craziness had nothing to do with you.  Do not let yourself be terrified of rejection or failure, just because you were constantly being rejected or failing, according to your Mom and stepdad.  

Let yourself grieve for the loss of your Dad.  Get help to learn how to grieve.  Do not just stuff the emotions deep inside, because you may never find healing.  

Thank God every day for getting suspended in public school, so your mom would pull you out of public school and put you in private school, where you met your high school sweetheart.  

Spend more time in church.  Read the Bible, dig deeper and get to know The Lord better.  Memorize scripture dnf tight 

Realize that the neglecting and negative attention has nothing to do with you and everything to do with them and where they have decided to take everything out on you, 

You have made great, close, God fearing friends.  Turn to them when you need love and not your Mom that cannot or will not give it and definitely do not turn to your stepdad that makes the comment "I put a roof over your head, clothes on you back and food on the table, what more do you want!"  Just let go of the fact that they are incapable of giving the love that you seek.  Turn to God and let him sort everything out.  

No comments: