Thursday, July 17, 2008

It's OK to be OK

It's OK to be OK ... that's what my therapist at the hospital told me yesterday. That seems pretty simple, huh? But it's not a concept I've grasped very easily.

I talked to my younger sister this morning. I sometimes think I call her as punishment. She is a constant state of "not OK," and in my opinion that's the only way she knows how to live. I was thinking of how I have tried to protect her from the reality that her father was a child molester so that she could have a better life. The truth is ... she wants her life to be just as it is -- a little too dramatic to be enjoyed. What I regret more than anything is that she is raising three children to think just like she does. All that said ... I realize that she's doing the best she can with what she's got. A single mom of three, working the night shift so she can be with her kids in the daytime ... that's no easy life. She is primarily responsible for her father (my stepfather) now, as all the rest of us have pretty much abandoned him.

Sometimes I feel guilty that she is in the position she is in, but then we all make choices. I've made mine and I respect hers.

I recognized while walking the dog yesterday that when I think about some members of my family, I consider their cases hopeless. I don't think they will ever change. Like I have no real hope that my sister will ever live life differently -- even though she is living much differently than she was when she was an active drug addict. I have a nephew whose abilities were severely minimized by his parents while he was growing up -- and I have the idea that he won't likely live much better than he does now. I think of my sister's kids -- each with different fathers and a whole screwed up idea of what makes up a family -- and I just have no hope that they won't grow up with little hope for a brighter future. It caused me to ponder if I think I am hopeless too, that I'm just reaching the point of life where I was always intended to be -- wrapped up in drama, hopeless and just getting by. Many people would call it white trash.

I made a determination many years ago I was not going to live like that ... and I don't intend to. I just need to take one day at a time and look upward rather than downward and realize that we all have our own journey. The journey of my family doesn't determine my journey.

Instead, the genetic mental disorders of my mother's side of the family have me off for another day of a treatment. I'm thankful to be willing to get the help I need.

4 comments:

Recovering Wino said...

I'm glad you are still moving forward...maybe it doesn't seem like it to you, but I can see the progress from afar. Keep plowing through it all, and keep asking God for the grace to power you through.

vicariousrising said...

My therapist likes to say: "How many psychiatrists does it take to change a lightbulb? Just one, but that lightbulb really has to want to change."

Very corny, I know. But I kind of like it. I think that you really do want to change and you know it is up to you, not outside forces, to take the steps to make it happen. It may not be as quickly as you would like, but it will happen as long as you keep working at it. Keep trudging. It's worth it. You're worth it.

bella said...

it's ok to be ok.
what a line.
i love this and will remember it for some time to come.
thank-you for continuing to share your journey with us.

Disturbed Stranger said...

Reading your post... your words... say you are a very strong person.
You don't seem to need a therapist in my opinion.
Great job.