I saw a vision as a child of family acceptance and unconditional love but time ran out. That only happened in other families. I wanted so bad to make my family proud but was always just a little under the bar. Why did there always have to be a “What if?” Every time I accomplished something I couldn’t wait to tell my parents even though I knew the answer. It was never enough. I joined the military to try to become independent but couldn’t let go of my father’s hand.
The severity of my insecurity was teetering on insanity. My struggle with suicide was growing stronger. I now had a failed marriage and was a single parent relying solely on my parents approval of everything I did. I was 40 years old. This was an age that I should look at as being a role model to my children so what in the hell was my problem!
I wanted to be loved and never learned how to love myself. “Make everyone else happy H, then they will love you.”
One day I snapped and my life changed. My father was screaming at me on the phone over my children wearing flip flops to church. “Who in the hell cares about flip flops and church is a joke!” That was it! I was done! I couldn’t live my life on the edge of madness any more. My children deserved to know the good in me. I knew I had it. I just had to find it.
What I did next was the hardest and most important thing I ever did in my life. I said goodbye to my family on my father’s answering machine at work. I couldn’t tell him in person because I knew I would crumble. I would have written a letter but I knew they had a file with letters I had written in the past that had been used against me. Leaving a message was the only thing I had left.
My kids had a difficult time at first not understanding why I wouldn’t let them see their grandparents so I started focusing on the value of family and sharing stories about their father’s childhood. They slowly understood the importance of what family should be and let go of the pain they felt for me.
It’s been four years. The joy and peace my kids and I have is sometimes overwhelming. We find happiness and laughter in the silliest things and I find myself crying for nothing more than making them laugh. I wake up every morning thanking God for my life and drive home each night from work feeling blessed and excited to see my kids!
I’ve written this article hoping that those who are struggling in life due to family can get their lives back. It’s a scary step to let go of your past but sometimes It’s the only way to save your own life.