If this were Facebook, I’d tell you to keep scrolling. But since it’s not, I’ll try to come up with something entertaining.
I haven’t been sleeping well lately.
Oh! Hang on! My Daily Harvest delivery is here. BRB
(Insert Jeopardy music here)
Okay, I’m back.
Where was I?
Oh yeah. Not sleeping well.
Someone once told me (to be more precise, it was my FIL) that not sleeping well is the sign of a guilty conscience.
That may not be true today, but boy, did he have that situation pegged.
I say “may not” because my bouts of insomnia aren’t always medically related. There’s often an emotional cause that’s buried deep in my psyche. I just have to do some digging.
And often what I’ve found is that even when I pinpoint the cause there’s still some work that needs to be done.
And it’s tough work, sometimes.
Just because you got the monkey off of your back, doesn’t mean the circus has left town.
The past has a way of interfering with the present if we don’t do the necessary work to clean the slate. It’s never really clean, we all know that, but we do what we can so everyone can start fresh.
It’s a little different when the slate that needs cleaning isn’t your own. Yes, this falls squarely under NOMB. And there are a lot of “buts” here, but I will try to stay out of this one.
And therein lies the problem.
When your kids are involved, even if they are grown-ass adults, you just want to fix it. Especially if you were absent physically and/or emotionally when all of this wreckage was forming.
I feel so responsible and I want nothing more than to undo it all for them. I was supposed to help them plant solid roots. Instead, relationships are fractured and there’s nothing I can do to change that.
All I can do now is to be supportive without judging or giving unsolicited advice. I can also try to be a role model. A lot of the same dynamic is present for me, too, in my family of origin, so repairing some of that might be prudent.
I did start that process a couple of years ago. I didn’t like it one bit. Still don’t. But I did it. There’s a lot left unfinished that I know I’m going to have to get back to. And I’m procrastinating. It’s certainly easier said than done.
So I have to leave this to them. I have to let go. This is not my journey and making it about me is the wrong move. They see right through that shit. Every damned time. And then the trust is broken. No way I’m going to actively and knowingly torpedo the thread of trust that does exist right now.
Oh yeah. It hurts. It hurts to not be able to fix it. It hurts to know that if I hadn’t gone the way I did, it might not be this way for them. Might not? Who am I kidding? It wouldn’t. Period.
So I think part of my sleeplessness is because I can now see the warning signs and hear the clanging. I can see it happening for them, like it happened for me, as clear as I see my reflection in the mirror.
And I am powerless to stop it.
I sure wish it would have been so clear a decade and a half ago.
He was right. It’s the sign of a guilty conscience.