The last week has been tough. It's difficult trying to get everything in my life in order. The weekend was especially excruciating. Friday I saw a budget counselor who's going to be helping me with my finances over the next year. Learning all this new stuff is overwhelming and I've been feeling bitter. I'm so frustrated with my parents... With my mom mainly. That would surprise most but in all honesty my father has treated me with nothing but respect for a long time now. Even when we get into arguments he doesn't raise his voice or call me stupid or even get angry. Looking at my family there's a split. People who respect me; Papi, Rudy, Danny verses people who don't respect me; Mami and Junior. I think it's because the boundaries are all out of whack... I'll get to that another time.
Yesterday I argued with my mom for hours. It started with me being stressed out and overwhelmed. My mom said it was because I was trying to fix everything in my life at once. That made me angry. Life isn't just like, "Tania... just focus all your energy on working out this month, then next month you'll work and the month after that you can learn how to save money." No! Everything has to be done at once. Life is a balancing act and I have zero coordination... Like literally and figuratively. Everything feels overwhelming because it is overwhelming, I wasn't taught any of the skills it takes to be a healthy functional adult. Bringing up the past is always a sore subject for my parents. Whenever my mom and I start fighting my dad conveniently finds some loud outdoor project that needs to be done right then, ha. Yesterday it was a hole. He dug a hole... probably for no reason. My family is so dysfunctional... Anyway... we fought, I brought up shit I didn't even know bothered me. "You know I don't remember hearing your voice before you and Papi got divorced. You were a shadow in all of my memories. Half a person."
...Reading that now I realize although that was true it was also unfair. I don't think anyone heard me talk until I was 11 years old. If you ask anyone I went to elementary school with they'll tell you I was always voted 'quietest' right before the silent korean girl. When my mom divorced my dad she gained her voice which allowed me to gain my voice. Ha... I just figured out why I'm so pissed with my mom... Its because I am her. "If you knew the type of life that was why the fuck would you let me live it too?!" I'm angry because I am making the same mistakes my mother made because my mother raised me the same exact fucking way she was raised. Holy breakthrough. Tania admits she is Ana Isabel... She did raise me different though. "Always go to school. Go to school do what you love and make lots of money so you never ever have to depend to a man. Learn everything you can, be as smart as you can be. You are so smart. Be smarter than me." That was my mother's mantra to me. I heard it sometimes everyday. I suddenly realize that she really did the best she could. She honestly didn't know any different. If I look at my life I am my mother only successful, single, and in a doctoral program.
I've been angry and frustrated with my parents but everything is so simple now. My parents were really fucked up because their parents were really fucked up. My parents did the best they could. They were foreign, my mom's dyslexic and they came here in the 70's... Times were completely different. I can't keep getting angry about things from the past. Fuck... I think I just mended a 25 year wound. Today is fucking amazing.
Anyway, I told Derek a little about our argument (I realize my stories are so biased. I kinda threw every horrible thing that's ever happened to me at my mother yesterday... with the intention of being open and honest but with subconscious contempt underneath that.) He made good suggestions and brought to my attention how involved my parents are in my life and how I keep trying to fix them. I seriously tried communicating with him telepathically after he said that (doesn't work yet) because last night my parents got into an argument where my mother made me referee. I mediated the shit out of the situation but... WHAT THE FUCK AM I DOING?! I told my mom yesterday that I feel like I've been the parent since I was 13 just with absolutely no power. "I've been teaching you how to parent me since I was a kid and you still don't fucking get it!" The argument ended when my mom hit me way below the belt.
"Well I'm sure you wouldn't have these complaints if your other parents raised you. I wish I cou..."
"You're a fucking bitch..."
"Fuck you. Fuck you for hurting me."
"How dare you speak to me that way? You never forget that you have to respect me!"
"How bout you remember that you need to respect me? You know how that feels? My whole life until like 3 years ago I believed that you guys didn't love me- that I wasn't part of this family. All of that because when I was little and didn't put my toys away I would get threatened with being taken back to my real parents. You know why I'm messy? Because for years I was testing you. Living in clutter just to see if you would ever actually do it. After a while it just became a habit. You never praised me. You never told me you loved me."
"Couldn't you see that we loved you?"
"As a 25 year old? Yes. As a 5 year old? No. Kids believe what their parents tell them. To children their parents are gods. All I heard growing up was everything that was wrong with me. I just believed I was never good enough to be praised. I honestly believed that. I believed I wasn't good enough because if I was you two would love me and tell me I was good. The only time I ever heard it was when you would parade me around as your little doll. Your little trophy child. 'Oh look how wonderful Al and Ana are! Look they took a schizophrenic's kid and with their wonderful parenting turned her into a perfect little girl!'" I was trained not parented.
I love my mom so much but I need to give that relationship some space. It may actually kill me but my mother and I need to learn independence. She and my dad need to get help on their own. I've been their marriage counselor for the last 13 years. I have so many memories of being in the kitchen and yelling, "Be nice!" as I walked out to avoid the crossfire.
Looking back at my childhood I feel like I've adjusted really fucking well considering. I feel like a warrior and I feel extra proud of myself for how far I've come. I'm really getting my life together. As frustrating and as scary as it is I'm doing it on my own.
After that emotionally exhausting evening I had the most amazing thing happen ever. I shall write a different post about that because I never ever want these two memories to linked together.