Reality Bites & So Does the Past
Today Daniel and I confronted our pasts. Both us having an emotional reaction to a situation we had faced while in another part of our lives, long before we had ever met.
Daniel and I have been together coming onto 7 years in January. We’ve developed a life together and we definitely talk a lot with each other.
Daniel and I have a date night every Tuesday. It’s our time to connect without interruptions or a computer being between us. We go out, share ideas and definitely talk about what is happening with The Crochet Crowd. We share the moments we have experienced recently. We laugh together and sometimes out of control laughter as we share stories and adding our own flare and drama to the story. If one of us is upset, the other rallies to feed the drama or the other one sees a different point of view. Sometimes we are both upset and we use the time to rally each other to push through.
This morning is not an usual day. During an outing, I saw Daniel looking over my shoulder. He gives me the eyes to look. I look over and see a guy but I don’t understand what he is asking me to look at. He signals me to never mind as we are too close to whatever he is trying to draw my attention to.
So we get further away and I signal him with my eyes… My signal with my eyes is “What’s up?” He signals with his eyes… “Hang on!” So we wait. Without a word spoken, I know something is up but I don’t get it.
So there was a person that was reminding him of his mother.
The Back Story
You see, his mother, who died 6 months prior to me meeting Daniel, had schizophrenia. Daniel had been taking care of his Mom as a caregiver from his high school years into his 30’s. Some of the behaviors of his mother has left permanent and emotional scars with Daniel. The sound of the local gun range is a chilling reminder of Daniel’s mother putting a loaded shotgun in his mouth as a teenager. She was not recognizing Daniel. Daniel pleaded for his life and trying to get his mother to recognize him. This was not an isolated, meaning one time situation.
In Daniel’s 20’s, he moved his mother to a group home where she settled down. With medication assisting her to stay out of the paranoia state, she eventually suffered a massive stroke but didn’t die. It would turn out the medication, which today has been banned as dangerous, had serious side effects. She would be eventually moved to a long term, hands-on nursing facility.
She managed to stay even keeled for the longest time. Adapting well to her surroundings. She had become paralyzed. On new medications and stable. Unfortunately, a visit by the local priest, as his mother was a devoted Roman Catholic. His mother had to face Daniel coming out of the closet but was okay with it. She had revealed to the priest that Daniel was gay and the priest had told her that he would pray for Daniel’s death and damnation for his sins. With this one statement, his mother lost complete control after what was said to her and she had processed it. She sank heavily back into the paranoia state. Years of being stable were over. Visits were her trying to protect Daniel from death but Daniel couldn’t reason with her that he wasn’t going to die.
His mother called him from the hospital and asked him to come over. Daniel had gone over to visit as she sounded stable and in control after months of being out of control. She told Daniel, I’m going to die tonight. I need to say goodbye. Daniel thinking she was in her paranoia state. He played along as something was different about this occasion. They both shared their feelings and said good bye.
Daniel was called in the middle of the night by the long term facility advising him that his mother passed away. It wasn’t forced or suicide. Her time was up.
To this day, Daniel felt she knew she was on her last breaths. He doesn’t know how she knew. They had the opportunity to say goodbye. Everything that needed to be said was said hours earlier during their visit. It was her time to be set free of her body and move on.
Daniel waited 8 years before starting a serious relationship. His mother was his priority and he wasn’t willing to compromise that. She had died 6 months prior to me. Daniel had contacted me through an online dating website. Now ready for the next leg of his life.
Today, the guy’s emotional face and his body movements suggested he was mentally ill and medicated. Something Daniel had seen his mother hit. Going from a vibrant mother to a heavily medicated and paranoid woman that was unable to take care of herself. Today was Daniel’s reminder of his journey which brings him here today.
Today, by accident, my past, prior to Daniel, walked directly in front of me. I couldn’t deny it. I tried to ignore it. I wanted to be happy for the person because that’s the human thing to do, but all I could see was the emotional and personally traumatic situation play before my eyes.
Like flashes of light with my memories being in black and white. I remember how I felt in my past about a certain person. I remember playing asleep when I wasn’t. I remember looking in the mirror and wanting to confront. However, I suppressed it so I could move on. Today… there was no moving on.
The Back Story
In my situation today, I had to talk, in depth, with the person who I had felt wrong’d by. My information I had came to be second hand, so I don’t know the truth but my mind says that it is because the ducks line up.
I had run into this person years ago and had an emotional shut down in a public setting with Daniel. I was unable to leave the situation back then as Daniel had been drinking and I was a designated driver. Daniel didn’t want to leave and I was emotionally upside down. The eye glances across the room were torture. I could feel the emotional damages I had suppress deep within. I was hurting.
Today, with not being able to deny or leave my situation. I talked in-depth with this person. Knowing how I felt and the conversation got more personal and started to roam into the past. My mind quickly flashing back. I thought to myself, of any time to finally ask for the truth, even though it could potentially drive me into tears and leave immediately, I decided to ask.
With a shaking voice, my eyes watering… I asked the question that I was terrified to ask. “What happened?” (Omg I am tearing up writing this!) I could barely speak in expanding on my question. I received the truth that I believe to be true. What I had been hanging onto for nearly 10 years was naked in front of me. In all sincerity, I believed this person’s information because when I looked up… I felt like I was looking back at myself, both of us tearing up. Both of us feeling the pressure of that question… Myself feeling volunerable and unblocked. Tears started to fall and I in public, trying to quickly hide my pain.
I looked into the mirror, years of hanging onto something so hurtful with assumptions feeding my memories, I looked through my glossy eyes and saw myself like I was under water looking back at myself.
I thought to myself… I can now rise up, swim safely back to shore, leave my past in the water and move on. Today, I felt a re-awakening of myself.
Today, it made me appreciate Daniel all the more. Together we have a life and I know he is my ‘person’ should I fall. I feel great comfort knowing that.
Today was our pasts biting us and for each of us, was facing our truths.