Power of Choice (LOVE)
Y’all knew this one was coming eventually. I know I’ve been away for a minute so I truly apologize to those that come here hitting refresh only to be disappointed that there is nothing new. July has been rough my loves. Rough. I’m powering through it though. Shoutout to that three hour workout last night.
How do we choose the person best for us? It’s said that love finds us and we won’t be able to help whom we fall in love with. I’m going to have to agree to disagree. The love we attract literally mirrors who we are and I can say this because I’ve dated enough people to analyze the exact moments these people came into my life and why. It takes willpower, but we can manage the connections we make, because not all of them are healthy. Truth be told, our strongest ties are usually toxic. Note: most people don’t even know that they are toxic. Relationships will continue to fail at an alarming rate. Take y’all asses to therapy.
Love should create a freedom not a prison. If you are going to choose to love someone on purpose ignoring that their role may be temporary in your life, at least choose someone who can evolve to love you better. Despite all the rules, opinions, memes, and whatever else (even me) tells you about love, you always have FREE WILL.
As a teenagaer, I attracted anybody that could give me attention. My daddy issues were deep and the void that needed to be filled was huge. I wasn’t taught to have standards having a mother that would date any man that would pay her bills. My view of love was date who gave you what you needed. At that point in my life, what I needed was attention and that’s what I got--good and bad.
In my twenties I attracted people that always needed me to take care of them financially and emotionally. I had bad boundaries and lots of trauma. They told me their sob stories and I opened my heart and my wallet, because in exchange I could cry on their shoulders about all that I’d been through.
Trauma Bond: A Trauma Bond is a bond that forms due to intense, emotional experiences, usually with a toxic person. Similar to Stockholm Syndrome. It holds us emotionally captive through physical or emotional abuse.
Nine years. For nine years I jumped from one toxic relationship to another until I myself became the toxic person. I’d picked up so many abusive patterns that I was drowning in darkness and fear and negativity. You'll have to wait for my healing and forgiveness blog to learn how I climbed and am still climbing out of that pit. Right now, I want to talk about knowing love and choosing it for yourself.
The focus on love in my life has always been in romantic relationships. It’s probably why I’ve crossed a friendship line with four people that have been closest to me thinking they had to be my partners in my life because they “got me” and “loved me” and I trusted them. I was wrong. Again, this comes from only having a one-dimensional view of love and bad boundaries, which I’m still learning to place. I miss each of them as FRIENDS.
Now in choosing love for myself I’m paying attention to all the types available to me. If you don’t know what they are, don’t worry I got you.
With that small explanation evaluate your connections. Decide what you choose to achieve, not only what you require, but what you can give. A lot of us sit with what we desire without ever thinking of the counter offer. This is how we meet perfect people and fail. I’m fully guilty of trying to love people when I didn’t love myself enough. I was pouring from an empty cup. Learn yourself and know your deal breakers.
For a long time I didn’t draw a line between myself and my lovers when it came to their insecurities and how that affected me. Them not loving themselves caused them to lie and cheat. I took this on as my own fault as if there was something that I I lacked. When in fact, the void was inside of them. One problem, one argument would lead them to someone else in some way. Not only does it reveal their insecurity, but also their maturity level. I had not been choosing women with high levels of emotional intelligence, which also spoke volumes about me. I had to ask myself why I was accepting this and why was it a pattern in every person that I’ve met? I had to understand my own worth and value. I should not want anyone that could easily seek out and share their time and attention with anyone else for quick validation when they knew it was me that they wanted to be with. This is not to say that I have not checked my own behavior, but even still I’ve learned not to match energy.
In a recent podcast with one of my favorite couples right now, they talk about matching energy and how it’s the worse thing you can do with anyone. Why? Because you lower your vibrations and you always want to vibrate high. I’ve been taking the high road with a lot of things and it has given me better results with people. We’ll talk about ego soon. Just know that nobody has more power over me than me. I want to deal with people that have that same type of control, platonic or romantic.
Romance again. I have a little note on my wall at home that says stay single until it feels like Alchemy. For me this means Eros + Ludus + Pragma + Philautia + Agape. All equally. I want to be loved for me on every level, not just the idea. I meet a lot of people who fantasize and I’ve dated a few only to be disappointed because they’ve already fallen for the fantasy they created instead of getting to know all of me: my fears, my flaws, my insecurities, my triggers, my traumas. I’m not a woman for small talk or egg shells or secrets or surfaces, but I also get why most people don’t like to dive deep. This, for me, weeds out the unworthy. I won’t sit here and lie and say that I’m 100% ready to commit to someone because I don’t think I am. My spirit will tell me when I’m dealing with someone that understands both my darkness and my light. What questions do you ask yourself when choosing a partner?
My questions--13 because it’s one of my numbers--and this is just a prerequisite (LOL):
She spilled all on me. SPILLED.
This obviously went over an hour. Some things my intuition always knew and it was conformation and others I had to brace myself because the impact could knock me from my seat. We sat and we talked about it until damn near three in the morning. Was I hurt? Yes. Was I upset? Absolutely. But I had to keep up my end of the bargain. I didn’t have a problem with it because I only wanted to be married once in life. I wanted to be the person that kept their word. I wanted to endure. I also appreciated the fact that she told me her truth and I was allowed to react. I’d never seen her that vulnerable or afraid. I knew that fear was due to me being able to go back on my promise to stay after the horrid things she’d confessed. This is going to sound ridiculous, but I respected her. We promised to be no less than 100% honest with each other after that.
Why are we not together?
Well, she continued to do fucked up things. There was no way for me to heal there, but I did come out of that knowing that I always wanted someone who could tell me their truth and not rob me of my choice to decide if I want to keep going. That is how I believed that some form of love was there for me, because the selfish thing to do would be to lie. She laid all her cards bare knowing the consequence and she let me choose. Staying after that was all on me. I had regrets. I don’t anymore. I learned. I thank her for a lot and it’s odd, but I now understand why diamonds are created from pressure. I also learned not to sit in discomfort with a person. I’m not afraid to argue. But I will say I probably should learn to ask questions, because I’m good at coming with the accusations without discussion. I know what I know and that’s it!
I want a fair lover and I want to be fair. Anything else is manipulation.
I’ll also tell you this. Meet truth with gentleness, because flipping out will only make a person fear being honest again. I’ve been sitting with my gentle spirit. She was hiding for such a long time because I’ve had to defend myself in love more often than not, but I want to enter love from the other side. If you chose love and to love, be in it, all the way. Don’t do grey areas and don’t quit when it gets boring or hard because it will.
“Neither of us knew how to love, and so, we went to war instead.”
Sit with that.
Patience. Loyalty. Consistency. Honesty. Trust. Unselfishness. Communication w/ comprehension. = Longevity and Love.
Let me know when y’all are ready to have the conversation about how love works when your poly. I got you.
I moved to Washington in 2014. I’ve been on a crazy path of growth and learning since I crossed this state line. The first thing that I started to miss while being away from home was the food. I ranted about it in Facebook and one of my Facebook friends suggested I try a restaurant called “The Quarters.”
This one hurts y’all. It hurts bad.
It took me almost a year or so to actually visit the restaurant because well, I never believe people when they send me to places that are supposed to taste like home—New Orleans.
December 15, 2016 my ex had stayed over because well I’m needy like that and she would always oblige. She came straight from the gym and the next morning for some reason I wanted to try “The Quarters.” She was always down for a food adventure. We stopped at a Goodwill—one of my favorite places—dressed her up and went on our way.
I felt at home the second that we pulled into the parking lot. The restaurant sits in the middle of a quaint space in Auburn, Washington. I walked through the doors and was instantly amazed by the art and music. We were instructed to sit wherever we pleased, so we did.
There were notebooks in the middle of each table. My nosey behind grabbed one and started thumbing through the pages. It was nothing but love and raves about the food and atmosphere. This place was home to many.
Then she came… Jade. Like the light she was, she smiled at my ex and I and made us feel like we were having a conversation with our favorite cousin. She was so full of life. I don’t think there was a moment she was never not smiling.
She had the perfect name. “Jade (crystals) is said to bless whatever it touches, serving mankind across the globe for nearly 6,000 years. Jade is most valued for its metaphysical properties. It is the ultimate "Dream Stone," revered in ancient cultures, as well as today, to access the spiritual world, gain insight into ritualistic knowledge, encourage creativity, and dream-solve. It is cherished as a protective talisman, assuring long life and a peaceful death, and is considered a powerful healing stone. An amulet of good luck and friendship, Jade signifies wisdom gathered in tranquility, dispelling the negative and encouraging one to see oneself as they really are.”
$40.00 would get us the best breakfast I’d had since I’d been in Washington. Jade would check on us as often as she could. She steal time to talk with us, telling us about her wife Chef T and their kids. She’d share her struggles about their restaurant and stepping out on faith and she’d fill us with love and encouragement for living life to the fullest. She was an open book like myself, which I found odd since she was a Scorpio. We’d leave with full hearts and belly’s and I’d never stop thinking about her. Some people just leave lasting impressions.
We promised to visit again.
A year later, on the same date we’d visit again and she’d remember us like she’d just seen us the day before. She’d give us free dessert and bad news that cancer was trying to beat her down. We’d both shed tears and hugs—Jade and I— because I know this pain all too well having a Mom that had to fight it twice. Jade was a fighter. She had so many reasons to just be alive. Her wife, her kids, and their business that was much more than a place to make food and money. “The Quarters” was/is a safe space for communion. So, what is it with a missing piece?
She’d always make it her business to spend as much talking time with us as she could. She was a walking blessing, giving to others even when she didn’t have much. She always reminded us to let the poor and hungry know they were always welcome to eat at her family’s establishment for free.
So here’s that age old question. Why do awful things happen to good people? She was a good people. I’ll always remember that smile on her face when we saw her for Easter and stayed for an Easter egg hunt, which I was bad at by the way. She told us where the good stuff was and well, epic fail. Still, one of the best times I’ve had in Washington. She and her wife are always doing things for the community. That’s why this hurts.
I’d been off social media for the longest and today I log in to see that she lost. I’m still processing. Watching her wife in pain was a stab to the chest. Jade’s energy has faded into the universe and I can’t imagine what life will be like for her wife and her children. What do you do when you lose your heart, you’re backbone, you’re air?
For you, I’ll learn to take more risk.
This Tuesday is an astrologically eventful day — we have both a new moon in Cancer and a total solar eclipse.
Don’t you just love Cancer season? I don’t. I feel all of my feels and my Aqaurius moon is confused like a motherfucker. Why? Because the Aquarius is logical and detached, so it’s literally like what is this?! It’s sadness you asshole, it’s disappointment, it’s fear, it’s life and we can’t run from it. It was a good weekend y’all. GOOD GOOD. I know it seems like I’ve been in hiding ( I have), but for good reason. Here’s my quick check-in:
So yeah, my time and energy has been well spent. I will say this. I’m in a phase of healing from a lot of things. Healing is ugly and my God is it painful. It’s like having someone walking in front of you with a mirror and they never get tired. I’m forced to see myself 24/7 without a break. Even as I write this blog, another part of my brain is focused on what I need to meditate on tonight. All-in-all my spirit is remembering peace and freedom again. I want to speak on one breakthrough in particular that I had this past Saturday.
I’ve always been obsessed with past lives and trying to figure out who I used to be and how much of that energy followed me into this life. We live many lives. Many. This one in particular has me shook. I was some kind of slave, but I got away. I followed a false leader that didn’t have my best interests at heart (a Leo). I used art for my sanity. I was also sick a lot (stress, depression, physical, and emotional abuse, etc.), but I remained spiritual. I struggled with finances because of this leader. What that means for me in this life? I’ve rejected religion and social constructs. I have hella trust issues. I care about my health. I have a lot of anger and resentment toward certain races. I love to cook. I care about the Earth. I’m financially secure. I’m a shape-shifter/chameleon. I’m a rebel. I can read people’s energy and know instantly if they are good for me. I’m a liberator/healer/teacher. All truth.
My gifts and talents that followed me to this life: singing, dancing, massage therapy, physical therapy, physical training, and speaking/communication.
Life is funny. Real funny. The theme of my life has been that I can’t forgive. Y’all don’t understand how stubborn I am. I can hate you until I die. I laughed when I learned that the only way for me to get to my highest, highest self is to forgive. I have to heal my root and heart chakra. My past life also has lots of good Karma. I always wondered why I’ve been so fortunate or lucky or blessed, whatever term you choose to use. It’s my soul. It’s beautiful. (Insert tears)
I cried crocodile tears, because now everything in my life has been confirmed. I’m on the right path and none of my pain in life has been in vain. Liberation is the chapter I’m in, in my life. I wrote a list of people that I need to forgive. Whether they forgive me or not is on them, not that I’ve ever really dealt with people who couldn’t forgive. It’s always been me. Some people on my list are harder to forgive than others, but I plan on crossing off all of the names before the year is over. Or at least, I hope to do my best. Carrying hate is a dark energy and it will eat you from the inside. I know this as fact because being bitter and angry has caused me to make poor decisions. I’ve hurt people, self-sabotaged, shut down, played victim, I’ve half-loved lovers, spewed venom from a hurt place, isolated myself, and acted out in revenge a few times, because Karma just didn’t work fast enough. I’m also paying attention to my triggers. They are where my deepest wounds are and need my TLC. I got this.
33 years and I’m finally done running from myself, my ugly truths, and other people who simply just wanted to make amends or apologize. Accepting an apology won’t kill you. This wave of emotions has been heavy. Heavy because my body is catching up. I blocked my healing with relationships, sex, alcohol, weed, and the biggest of all anger. Anger is a motherfucker and a monster. Even though my anger wasn’t always displayed in physical violence, it came out in other ways that were still destructive. We don’t get a do-over in life, but we can reset.
I also want to set my next life up for success by balancing energies in this life. That means breaking karmic ties so they don’t repeat and recognizing soulmates (romantic and non-romantic) and the lessons that they come with (next blog). Honoring the good that came from these connections and not harping on the bad.
Healing cost time, energy, ego, relationships, money, and money. When you are ready for a shift, put everything on the table. Change isn’t cheap, but holding out on yourself costs more than you can give, -Chani Nichols
Understanding yourself and people is not a waste of time.
I’ll leave you with what I listen to when I wake up and before I fall asleep:
Love and Light beautiful humans. Keep choosing love. Let go of regret. Follow your heart.
Random confirmation from a stranger.
The face of freedom and peace <3
I guess we’ve arrived. That blog for another day or at least one of them. With Father’s day right around the corner I figured it was time I purge it out. Yep, you got it: daddy issues. What are they and why do I have them? Have a drink. Shit, I might have one too, because the places that I have to go in my mind aren’t that great.
Shoutout to my therapist for trying to no avail.
I was daddy’s girl from day one. He has another daughter before me with another woman, but he wasn’t allowed to be in her life or at least that’s how the story was told. The other truth was he hit her Mom and she kept her and her daughter as far from him as possible. So, I was it. His golden child, his pretty little princess. In his mind, his first. I have the good memories of us dancing in the living room (the reason I love to dance). He and I always going on car rides. Him carrying me when I was too tired to walk. Jordans on my feet that matched his. And naps. And watching football/basketball games together. Him defending me against my Mom when she wanted to whip me for something stupid. He was my idol and my hero.
Then there is the one story that shut it all down. My dad was a cheater and I was a dry snitch. Because he took me everywhere with him, he decided it was okay to bring me with him to see another woman. He didn’t count on my Mom asking me about our day and what we did. My Mom wasn’t expecting to be told that my dad was on a couch with another woman kissing, not the word I used at four, but it’s what I saw. The other woman was “the lady” and I re-enacted what I’d seen. I’d created a big blowout between my parents that would no longer allow me to nip at my father’s heels. Him leaving me home all of a sudden would make my Mom more suspicious of him and things would only get worse. There pet names for one another would go from babe to bitch and they would use me to trade insults.
I remember a time when my mother cooked dinner. She sent me to tell my father that it was ready. He looked thoroughly disturbed at the audacity of my mother not to serve him as she always had. He sent me back down to tell her to bring him his food. She responded by having me tell him to get his damn plat himself. She told me to make sure I said damn. He ran down the stairs to confront her. Another fight. Another chance for my mother to remind him about the other women (bitches and hoes).
My Mom would do all the crazy things that women do in order to make the infidelity stop: moving, changing our phone number, fighting the other women (yes women plural), fighting my dad, crying, begging, pleading until she was exhausted. The last resort would be making the playing field even. She’d start wearing less and going out more. This life would remind her that she never wanted to be a wife or a mother. My aunt would wait outside in the car to pick her up for a night of clubbing. Once, I stood there with my cabbage patch doll in my hands as my father blocked the door with his arms stretched out. He told her she couldn't leave because she had him. She had kids. She didn't care and when he refused to move out of her way she dug into her purse and pulled out a box cutter that she'd gotten from the K&B where she worked. She started swinging it at him, slashing his shirt in hopes she'd hit skin.
This is what love looked like. My own violent outburst were happening in real time twenty years ahead.
He let her go after realizing I'd been standing there the whole time. He sent me up to my room with my sister and called the police on my Mom. I stood at the top of the stairs watching as he explained their situation and tried to get them to go after her. She'd never lashed out like that before. It was the first that I remember and it wouldn't be the last.
She’d meet a man and my dad would find out. Next, his pride would accept that she was only lashing out because of his own bad behavior. He’d give her an ultimatum. Do you want your husband or your boyfriend? After fourteen years, she’d decide that a man that gave her false promises and cheap thrills was worth more than keeping her family together. I don’t know this man, nor do I remember him. As far as I know, he never existed. The story continues with this mystery man not wanting her in the same way. Maybe a year or so had passed.
My heartbroken and drunken mother would try to crawl back to my father. He was hurt and starting over and did not anticipate the amount of guilt and regret she’d showed up with to his front door. My father was a new cop on the force at this time. He told her that they could talk in the morning and put her in his bed while he took the sofa. He laid down to close his eyes and moments later a loud pop would awaken him.
She’d shot herself in the chest with his gun.
My sister and I were at my aunt’s house. She’d tell us the next day and we wouldn’t understand. We were too young. Even with her bloody clothes in an open bag in front of us we would not get it. What I did know was there was no coming back from that or so I thought. My parents were bonded somehow and couldn't leave one another alone, even when they started seeing other people. I would see my father sneaking out of my Mom’s bedroom up until I was about seven. This gave me hope. I’d pick up the phone at the back of the house and hear them having inappropriate conversations. I thought he’d be back.
I hadn’t even noticed when he stopped coming around, but when he did return it was with a woman. Her face drooped, her hair was short, she had rings around her eyes, and a protruding belly. I was going to be a big sister again.
This was the straw that broke the camel’s back. My mother couldn’t stand the sight of him. You could see the hurt on her face. She went from not talking about him at all to in so many words saying our father wasn’t shit. She liked to say “You’ll see for yourself how he is when you get older.”
I don’t know if he paid child support, but here is what he did do. He bought me a jewelry box that I kept until it was broken. He brought me a talking computer to learn shit. He gave me some clothes and shoes that he’d taken from a booster he pulled over while on patrol. He gave me his Nintendo when our house got broken into and they stole mine. He showed up to my school when a boy wouldn’t stop touching my legs. He always came over to yell at me when I got in trouble. I found trouble on purpose since it made him show up. He remembered my birthday twice in 33 years. He got me Christmas gifts twice maybe three times. He gave me $200 once for gas. He threatened one boyfriend on a first date. He told me it was okay not to believe in religion. He reminded me often that my Mother was “crazy.” He picked me up whenever my mother would put me out of her house. He told me I was his favorite, because I looked the most like him and had most of his ways. I was him. He always opened my doors. He carried my bags. He picked up checks at dinner. He only let me drive his car. He showed up to all of my volleyball games and bought the team gatorade. He taught me how to throw a football. He chased off a dog that was chasing me. He bought me a bike. He had my prom dress custom made. He always had cops in the city watching my every move, even when we weren’t speaking. He made me his Valentine one year. He got his side chick to rent me a car. He taught me how to tie a tie. He said “I love you,” once.
I haven’t spoken to my father since 2016. I’ll never forget it because it was my ex's birthday weekend. It was raining and I was driving. I almost killed us both several times as I engaged in a screaming match with my father. I’d had it up to wherever “here” is that night.
All I did my entire life was try to please him, but nothing had ever been good enough. My mind goes back to the time I scored a 95 on a test. He says, “That’s good, but why didn’t you get 100?”
Is an “A” not an “A”? *Insert my toxic shit here* because now I make people feel like they aren’t good enough without realizing it. Instead of applauding what they are proud of, I make them feel they should have/ could have done more. It’s a gross essence that I carry around. Then there was my sixth grade graduation. I called to invite him and his words to my ten year old self were, “I’ll come to the one that counts.”
Don’t they all count? Kindergarten? Sixth Grade? Eighth Grade? High School? College? No? And before you ask, yes. He and his wife who hated me showed up to my high school graduation like proud parents.
There was that one fight when my mother was $100 short on my class ring and she called him. He didn’t have it. The kids that lived with him got theirs. My brother even got a car while still in high school. The word here is jealous. I went off on him for the second time in my life. The first time I was fourteen and he'd gone through my things and found letters from my first girlfriend. Privacy was not a real thing in his home. With my class ring, he needed to feel justified. He called his Mom and she called me as if she was going to put me in my place. I handed the phone to my Mom. Not that day Satan. That side of the family was old testament all the way. He someone deserved my respect simply because he was my father. I guess my days on Earth were number due to his shortcoming and my need to call them out. Oh well.
His new wife was his scapegoat when it came to what he couldn’t do. A woman who barely worked and when she did, she made a tenth of his salary. “She bought that” for insert my siblings names here. Sure, Dad, sure. He also loved to talk down on our mother. Him and his evil mother. God disturb her soul. Rest is for the weary not the wicked. They talked about her as a mother, how she was as a wife to him: not obedient in a nutshell. He loved to tell us how our lives could have been different. The places we lived weren’t good enough. I was smart enough to know she, my mother, chose what she could afford with 11 an hour and two whole ass kids that needed her for everything. She did her shit too, but she did more than him. Even with one foot in the door, she showed up.
When I think about it, they would have never made it. My mother didn't have the kind of spirit that could be controlled. His current wife never learned to drive and had no interest in ever learning. My mother couldn't drive when he met her and when he said he wouldn't teach her she stole his car and taught herself. Sitting at home while he had the freedom to cheat was not an option for her. Her "crazy" needed to follow him if and when necessary.
Shoutout to my therapist for making me separate the woman from the mother. Two people raised me and I see it more and more everyday.
My father loved to say he wanted his girls--me and my sister--in his life, but his actions always showed the opposite. We were only allowed to stay at his house for a certain amount of time. His wife didn’t really want us there. We ate dinner at a dining table separate from theirs. She always sat in her room with the door closed when we were there. She never talked to us directly. Our brother or sister were the messengers. I guess it had to suck living in the shadow of my mother who my father claimed was the love of his life. His new wife was a thorn in my side. She fed me a raw burger once and I was so sick that I had to crawl to the bathroom. You think this bitch left her room to check on me? No.
I have so much rage.
My father had his one moment to shine, to show he loved me. Him and the beluga whale (his wife) were arguing about me. For some reason she wanted me gone. I don’t remember why. I remember my father being upset. I remember her putting my things in trash bags and sitting them in the garage. I left the next day after school. I went to my Aunt's house until I could figure out where I wanted to be, because it was looking more and more like I was going to have to do life on my own. My father was frantic. My aunt told my mother where I was and my mom called him. He came to pick me up, even though I didn’t need or want him to, then we went to my grandmother's house. The evil one. He stayed there one night with me then left. He came back with all of my things and made up some story that I had manipulated and lied to him and blamed his fights with his wife on me. It happened so fast that I still can’t pause the event in my mind to pull out the specifics. All I know was his decision was made and more strain was added to our rocky relationship. He’d made it clear that he had to have a life with his wife, not me.
For her, I was just the evidence of the love my father and mother shared. I was some obvious competition that needed to be eliminated. It must have been so stressful. I guess.
It’s kind of how my siblings felt about me, too. They saw me as the one he adored most. I could see why they felt that way, but they also didn’t walk a mile in my shoes to see that his love for me was just as fleeting. I don’t blame them for how they feel/felt. He did trust me a lot. He told me once that I was his best friend. I believe that because he told me things I know he’d never tell anyone else. But he wore two faces because in the one intimate conversation I’ve had with my brother he told me how my father used me and my sister as examples of what and who not to become. He reminded them of their two-parent home privileges often.
It was years later that the story changed and my dad felt they needed to be more like us. He'd given them too much and now they couldn't survive in the real world. I feel most for my brother, not being the son my father wanted: athletic, loud, aggressive, misogynistic, gross. All the things black men think the extension of their penis should be.
My sister and I never really liked being at my Dad's house because of the overly controlled emvironment. We could only close the bathroom door. He set an alarm all day to make sure he knew who tried to leave or enter the house. We couldn’t talk or play too loud. There was no unmade beds. If he didn’t like how you made the bed, he’d strip it and make you do it again. Girls washed dishes, boys took out the trash. My sister and brother were teens and their mother still had to pull out their clothes for school. We all just followed his rules. This was how he liked his life. This is what made him happy. He could do whatever, but everyone else had to do what they were told. He was the breadwinner so that made him King.
Like all stories, the King has to go to war to remain in power.
The war began when my baby sister went rogue. There are five of us. She is the youngest. She was 19 when his antics got old. She wanted to go away for school. He shut that down. He wanted to monitor who she was dating. He went through her phone and email browser often, still taking her phone and computer away to punish her when something was inappropriate. She was nineteen. She still had to share a room with my autistic aunt. She barely had friends or company. She was nineteen.
She’d met a guy and she wanted to be with him and to get out of my father’s house. She wrote a letter and gave it to my brother, so he knew that this would be happening. He lied to my father about it. She packed a few things and left the house for school like normal. After, she ditched her phone and her boyfriend drove from Oregon to Louisiana to take her away. My dad called to tell me she was missing. The story was blotchy. He then said she ran away, which turned to she was kidnapped by a guy she was dating on the internet. I’ve never met a kidnapper that would put up a GoFundMe asking for $200 to save his girlfriend, but okay. I put it all together for myself. I anonymously donated to the GoFundMe and put my number so they could call me if they needed more. She was nineteen and old enough to make her own good and bad decisions. I supported that and he was not happy. So there we were in an all out screaming match,while I was supposed to be celebrating my partner, about how awful of a father he had been to all of us. Then I saw a side of him that I’d seen in my younger self--manipulation. He tried crying, he played victim, he tried twisting my memories as if none of it had been what it seemed. He forgot. I was him. When you scream at a mirror, you’re only looking stupid to yourself.
It didn't work, because I remembered when it was me that had ruined his picture of perfection. That’s right, his golden child liked girls. He blamed himself for not being around as much. He didn’t understand. Shit, I didn’t either. The fallout over my sexuality was just as bad just not as loud.
He went all out for my sister. Had her face on the news. Had people looking high and low for her. He painted her boyfriend as a criminal. His friends were contacting me on Facebook trying to get me to hand her location over. Instead, I got her to call the investigator to tell her side of the story so she could go free. One of us needed to. She got to grow up with him so physical detachment was easy. I’d forever be under his thumb mentally and emotionally. I envied her.
I sometimes have moments of relief knowing that I wouldn’t be who I am had he stayed with my mother, but I still needed him.
I needed him to protect me from the countless men that would violate my space. I needed him to tell me that I was pretty. I needed him to tell me that sex was not love. I needed him to hug me. I needed him to be the wall between me and my mother. I needed him to tell me I was enough. I needed him to tell me he loved me. I needed him to teach me love the right way. I just needed him.
So in those open wounds and spaces I placed women that would pick up where he left off. They were all powerful in their own right, but they too had things about them that needed to be “fixed.” As my therapist put it, I desire people that I have to repair because I couldn’t fix my dad. I let them drop their emotional baggage on me and I tried to carry it with mine with the invisible agreement they would feed my daddy issues. Demons in exchange for demons.
Me in a relationship:
I argue until I win.
I never trust anyone fully.
I love people that are older. The older the better.
I drool at ambition.
I love all things dominant: career, sexual, energy. The more aggressive you are, the more I’ll want you.
I stay even when I’m being mistreated because sometimes I feel like I deserve it.
I seek the constant approval and validation of my partner.
I have some interesting fantasies, twisted even.
I used to, USED TO, need to be hurt emotionally in order to feel loved.
I love to feel safe.
Is there a shock that I married someone in the military or that I’m now dating a soon to be Police Officer? Two jobs my father had in his life. My daddy issues even over power by radical blackness because… cop? Yeah.
I don’t know what happened in my dad’s life to make him the way that he’s been. He had his father. He also had his mother and married a woman just like her. I only know bits, but I don’t know what’s true or not. I just know that I want to find enough of a resolve to be better than him. To not need him or miss him. He didn’t deserve my love or loyalty when he couldn’t even acknowledge his own faults and stubbornness.
Silence until death. He’s the adult. I didn’t ask to be here so I shouldn’t have to be the bigger person. I'm older. I see for myself.
Shoutout to my therapist for making it okay to cut off toxic people even if it’s family.
Shoutout to the girls whose first heartbreak was their dad.