My week is panning out to be full on and I’m not coping well with that idea. A few days ago I wrote about needing to fill time in order to avoid sinking into dark and destructive thoughts. The problem is, I’m running out of energy and now I am faced with a load of stuff I really don’t want to do.
Today my grandma, cousin, dad and sister are spending the afternoon at my house. I haven’t seen my grandma or my cousin in over a year. My parents felt it wasn’t right to tell my dad’s side of the family anything about my breakdown or the reasons why it happened. I always defer to them; assuming they’re right and I’m wrong, so I never questioned it.
I managed for a while to maintain a relationship with my grandma, based on half-truths and dodging questions. It was strained and awkward, but I did it because I love her and she’s in her eighties so I may not have her around for a lot longer. But after my brother announced that his wife was pregnant, I couldn’t see her anymore.
I knew she would be really excited about her first great-grandchild and I couldn’t bear the thought of listening to her being thrilled about something that I see as completely awful. It magnifies the sense of exile I feel from my family when I hear them talk like that. It stirs up a load of inner turmoil, because I literally cannot feel OK that my loved ones are so happy that my abuser has become a father. It is almost impossible for me to want to be around people whose perspectives are so extremely contrasted with mine.
Eventually, my parents told my grandma a watered-down story so she knows that my brother and I are not on speaking terms. They’ve told her I haven’t seen my nephew and I don’t plan to. They said his is because the two of us have ‘fallen out’. Although this is progress from their complete denial, it is also upsetting that it’s been paraphrased this way. Actually, it is disrespectful to what I’ve been through, to not even attribute any blame to him. But all the while I’m too much of a coward to stand up for myself, this is probably the best I will get.
Although I’ve seen him briefly a few times in the past several months, my dad hasn’t been to my house in over a year. There’s a good reason for that. The last time he visited, he upset me so much that I took a huge overdose the following day. So hosting him and having to make conversation with him is going to be tough. As I’ll have a houseful, I’m assuming that nothing too distressing will come up in conversation, other than perhaps my nephew. And my sister is planning to be there as a ‘conversation changer’ to save me from that.
God I am getting palpitations just writing about this.
I’m not going to get any breathing space now until Friday afternoon. My sister is staying until tomorrow, then I have work and secret Santa in the office (*vomit*). To round it all off it’s the company Christmas party tomorrow night – which I completely loathe, but for ‘political’ reasons have to attend. By then, it’s going to take even more determination than usual to avoid the warming, sedating draw of the stacks of free alcohol provided.
On the plus side, I finished a few new paintings last night as part of my grandma’s Christmas present.