My mind has been working overtime. When I haven't been working it seems my mind is not content to rest. It seems that just because things happened in the past, my mind treats time quite differently, recalling events and bending time so that things that should be in the past are in fact very much of the now. It makes it difficult to move on. It is hard to go forward when the past is anchoring you to another time like an umbilical cord reaching back. It makes it impossible to forget.
This last year has not been particularly traumatic. It has been very stressful, but not traumatic. An outsider could even say I have had a successful year as I gained my Masters degree and got promoted at work. These events passed by uncelebrated however with no congratulations from my family and somehow the the wind was knocked out of my sails.
Some of you know that I have been through a couple of traumatic years prior to the last 12 months. I have been through surgery, divorce where I lost not just a husband but friends and security, the loss of my niece in a car accident, and the additional stress of carrying extra work while my boss was ill for 9 months (not to mention my mothers illness and hospitilisation). Hot on the heals of all of this came the personal attack from my brother followed by the closing of ranks from the rest of my family. I felt like I lost them all. I am not being dramatic when I say a piece of me shrivelled and died because that is exactly how it felt. So much loss.
A year on and I have realised that my mind has been trying to work things out. Analysing what has happened, trying to make sense of it. In short I have been looking for closure (awful phrase but so very apt). The truth is I don't really know why my brother launched such a personal attack on me at a time when I was so very vulnerable. I don't really know why my family turned their backs when I asked for help (because I have gone over it and over it and I did not deserve it). I don't know why my marriage ended with so much bile and why the person who once promised to cherish me let everything go with no attempt at reconciliation and no discussion. No closure.
I have been trying to second guess because no-one would talk to me. Every time I tried I met a brick wall, so my mind has been patiently beavering away for over a year now, trying to figure it out. That's a long time to be living in the past.
Of course, me being me I have blamed myself for everything. I felt unlovable and so it must have been something wrong with me, right? Wrong. The problem comes because I have no other explanation. Sure I have guesses and suspicions. I suspect my brother was hurting from the loss of our niece and took it out on me, I suspect his pride stops him from apologising (though this doesn't explain his other mean behaviour), I suspect my ex and I were going different ways. I suspect my surgery and other events placed a strain on my marriage. I suspect my family would rather avoid an emotionally difficult situation and hope it goes away. Truth is I just don't really know and the most awful thing about living through all of this crap is that I have been left to try and figure all this out on my own. To try and put it behind me and move on.
So, I have to accept not knowing (very difficult for someone whose favourite question since being a child is 'why?'). It is time to snip that umbilical chord to the past events and just deal with things as they are now. My new estranged relationship with my family makes me sad but when I look at it I realise that they haven't changed, just my perception of them has (though this was my world and so it's not surprising that it has felt like it has shifted on it's axis). I think I should stop being so hard on myself and if no-one else wants to celebrate my recent achievements then it's up to me. I hereby give myself permission to pat myself on the back and say 'well done. You did good kid, despite everything you still came through'.