Monday, November 21, 2016

Flaws and All?

I scribbled this out on a piece of scratch paper several years ago, on a day when I was very upset. It makes me very uncomfortable to read it, but a close friend of mine says I should leave it the way it is, and post it.

Things used to be different,
My mother always says.
Things used to be simple,
My mother always says.
Things are always simple for a child,
My mother forgets to say.
Her mother let the mountains
Run her life.
My mother never liked that.
My mother tries to run my life
in a passive-aggressive fashion.

Don't tell them your Daddy's sick,
My mother always said.
She was quite embarrassed by that,
But would never admit it.
The world can only be *this* big,
Otherwise I can't make it.
Reality is too complex.
Things must be black and white
Just because they are.
Don't ask me why, 
But that's how I want them to be.
I am the judge of universal right and wrong.
I get to decide the line between enough and too far.
I get to decide when everybody else has gone too far.

God hates me
Why else would my daddy be sick,
He didn't deserve that.
Why can't I have nice things,
just because my daddy's sick?
I feel inferior every time the neighbor gets a new car.
I get mad when I'm not skinny,
But I don't want to put the work in.
Someday when I have credit cards
I can screw myself up really good,
And lie to my husband about it
And make it hard for my son to trust other people.

Be who you are,
But make sure I like that person.
Be honest, 
But don't tell me inconvenient truths.
Be brave,
But don't scare me.
Be truthful,
But don't tell anybody about it.
Live my way, 
Because that's what I know.
Do what the preacher says,
Or he says you'll go to hell.
Everything depends on what somebody else says.
Ignore why they're saying it
Because it's better to be careful

My mother never taught me to cope.
My father was often too sick.
I overreact.
I assume the worst.
When angry I flail about like a 4 year-old
And want you to hurt more than me.
I must push your buttons to make that happen.
I will say the most hurtful things,
The most vicious things,
I will spew venom.
I'll try to make you feel guilty.
I'll try to make you feel sorry for me.
When that doesn't work
I must make you say something mean,
Because then you're the asshole,
Because that absolves my mistake.
And never move forward.
I want a fast solution,
To a problem I helped create.
I never can let things go.
I spend twenty years wishing people who did me wrong got theirs worse.
I let it fester and never make peace because I can't find closure,
And expect everybody else to be as confused.
And get mad when they're not.
Being happy is hard for me
Because I worry why I'm not happier.

I micromanage everybody's business.
I get mad when I don't know my son's business before he does.
Tell me what I don't know,
What I don't want to hear,
So I can overreact,
And get mad at you for telling me what made me mad,
That I forced you to tell me.
I get mad when people can't tell me things they don't know.
I become frustrated when I can't have information when I need it,
Because my plans are the best plans.

Don't do anything...
People might say you did something wrong.
Other people are more important.
We must not let that happen.
Because in a small town
things get around.
We've never lived in a small town.
I don't like people saying I'm not perfect.
I attach my identity to the GOP
Rush Limbaugh is my high priest.
He is never wrong
And if you suggest so I will likely raise my voice in frustration.
Romans 13:1, I've never read that.
I don't like what it means about Democrats.
Stop living and you'll never make a mistake.
I'm always scared of what other people say.
I listen to people that tell me what I've already heard.
Will & Grace can't be real.
But Mayberry is.

His father didn't care.
Wasn't ever there.
His mother was never wrong.

Do as I say
Not do as I do,
I always say.
I jest, but not really.
My rules and expectations only apply to you.
Take the shit from me that I won't accept from others.
I'm entitled to say what I want and you must respect that.
You do not have that privilege, especially if I'm wrong.
The world I grew up in
Was blinded by hate and bigotry,
Disguised in superfluous manners
And dressed in the Gospel for ritual,
Set to the tune of Dixie.

I don't want to go anywhere.
Nothing impresses me.
There are Yankees there. 
They're not as good as we.
Things are different there.
That makes me uncomfortable.
I don't want you to like things I don't.
That's not easy.
I don't know how to appreciate that.
Thankfully I have another son who won't disappoint me.
Let's live in 1974.
That's easy.
That's what I know.
I don't care
If it wasn't always right.
It's easy.
That's what I know.

Edicts banish problems.
Keep your feelings to yourself.
Please don't get upset,
Or I'll have to run
To the the basement and
Go to sleep to make it go away.
If you don't let me
I will throw a fit...
And maybe a glass.
I don't know how to handle emotions constructively.
So I'll drown mine in carbs,
Boxes of cereal
And gallons ice cream.
And teach you to do the same,
And make you watch me eat myself until I give myself diabetes,
Then refuse to take care of myself,
And make you pick up my slack.
Why does watching me eat myself to death make you mad?
You've no right to be mad.
So what if I'm too unhealthy to enjoy my grandchildren.

It's my way or the highway,
Even if you are pushing thirty.
Boys are easy,
Just threaten to kick their ass,
Then you always win. (I swear he actually did say that...)
Then you are always right.
I never stopped to think you might be paying attention,
That you might actually be listening to everything I say.
I never stopped to think you wouldn't always be seven.
I never wanted to hurt you, but I can't stop myself,
Even when you're right in front of me telling me that you're hurt.
I don't care if you're angry,
My anger is more important.
Make me not angry.
Apologize to me.
Your apology isn't good enough.
Do it again.
Seven times.

I can drag you up a flight of stairs.
I am your father.
I can threaten physical violence.
I am your father.
I can grind you into a fine powder
And humiliate you to get my way.
I am your father.
I will realize my mistake,
Then hide behind my money
And rationalize my behavior
So I don't have to say I was wrong.
I'm right.
You're wrong.
Stay a child so I can keep it that way.

I will only apologize to you once,
But never when you ask for it.
I don't care if you don't like it
You'll never actually convince me that I made a mistake.
I'll always be the man.
Just like my father taught me.
No, you rarely saw him before he died.

I can chew tobacco
Behind your mother's back
And hide it
And lie about it for over twenty years
And get made at you for catching me.
I am justified.
But don't you dare do what I've been told is Immoral.
I've never bothered to find out why.
You'll never call me a hypocrite.
You'll never make me listen.
I taught you to think,
But I don't like that you don't think like me.

Please me or I'll make you go away
To make it easier on me.
Do things the way I think you should,
Or I'll write you off.
Like my sister.
Like my aunt.
Like my cousins.
Like your aunt.
Like your uncle.
Like your cousins.
Like my friends.
Like my neighbors.
Like everybody...
There's not many left.
Never mind my sister did the same thing to me.
My reasons are actually right.
I want things my way.
I taught you and showed you
How to run from people who hurt you.
Why is there this distance between us?

So why am I the one acting like the adult?

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