Past presents

I think it was my aunt’s mission to get me drunk at the family Christmas party.

Alcohol…it has a way of bringing me to life. It makes me feel emotions that are otherwise stuffed away. I answer questions less guarded. Sometimes not only do I then like people, but I become the life of the party.

I was cornered. Have a glass of wine. Once it is emptied, it was refilled by another. Normally I might have told her to piss off (but probably in kinder words)…I am in control of my body and how much I choose to drink. But for some reason, I didn’t care. My aunt through marriage is a very eccentric person and I am drawn to her because she is exciting.

After a few drinks, my aunt started talking about her college days. Apparently she was in a sorority and could drink most people under the table. She started asking questions about my college days as she refilled my glass yet again.

What I told her was that I spent a majority of my college years taking care of my special needs brother. I told her that my mother needed my help so I stepped up to the plate.

What I didn’t tell her was that I only applied to one college, the one closest to home. I didn’t tell her that I never went to one party when I was in college. I didn’t tell her that my mom had a hard time keeping minimum wage caregivers for Matt because he was violent towards them. I didn’t tell her that Saturday night was shower night for Matt, not party night for me. This was the night I bathed him like a small child, not like a slightly younger brother.

My aunt told me I was gypped. Why didn’t my mother put Matt in a group home sooner so I could have a somewhat normal life?? She told me that she saw all these things happening to me but there was nothing that she could do about it.

Her words brought tears to my eyes that threatened to drop. I didn’t want her pity. I told her it made me a better person. That is just the type of bull I say to make people stop seeing me as a victim. I view myself as a strong person, not in any way am I weak or to be ever portrayed as such even though I once was. This is the protective shell I cover my hidden vulnerability with.

Has it made me a better person?? In all honesty, probably not. I don’t believe that I would’ve been a ‘bad’ person if I went to a keg party instead of staying home on a Saturday might to bathe my brother.

Usually I just keep my mouth shut about topics that could lead to conversations about my childhood. I don’t like people picking at my scabs. I feel very hurt that I was robbed of a childhood. It has been a great weakness for me as a parent. I’ve spoiled my children by giving them the childhood I never had. Deep down inside I feel hurt, anger, and resentment towards my mother for taking that away from me. I feel guilty because I know that my mother did not want it to be that way.

I am living the best years of my life right now, but I can’t seem to escape the constant reminders of a painful past.

3 thoughts on “Past presents

  1. This is a thoughtful post on your part. Where is your brother now if I can ask? I have some personal experience with a similar situation. My daughter, after her mother and I separated, had to step up and help take care of three much younger siblings because paying someone to help was not an option. She became a mother to her siblings at a very young age. I did my best to make her time with me that much better because she needed it. Now that she is in her mid 20s I see her very differently. But, I don’t think she has any resentment toward her mother. Things like that make people’s who they are,,,,we all have a story to tell. Sometimes it’s tougher than others. Stay strong 💪🏻

    Liked by 1 person

    • My brother is in a group home and has been for several years now. I don’t feel bad about helping out. I feel bad when I hear about the normal stuff I missed out on…leaving home…feeling carefree…not having to share the shoulder of adult responsibilities. There really is nothing there. It is gone.

      It sounds like you have a good relationship with your daughter which probably helped her cope successfully with her home life. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

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