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Goodbye Revisited

I have been absent from communications for some time and need to bring some clarity and understanding to that situation.

You both know that I have chosen a healing path the past six years. Understand also that my healing journey has been my lifetime’s work. I have sought and found the clarity I’ve spent decades searching for. With this understanding has come amazing realizations about myself, my family and the nature of this precious world.

I have come to a place where fear no longer has a hold on me, where I understand the cost of clinging to fear in order to feel ‘safe’. These chains of fear no longer bind me.

I appreciate both of you as my teachers of many things I needed to learn.

Mom, I can see your dedication to service and helping others. Your ability to withstand pain and continue to show up for others is amazing. Thank you for teaching me strength. Thank you for showing me how to be a warrior for others and that discovering my inner mama bear is possible (because I watched you do it). Thank you for showing me that rebuilding my life is possible after significant and deeply felt loss. Thank you for helping me to recognize that that loss is a teacher and that reclamation of what was once lost is possible.

Dad, you encouraged me to be in nature in community. In doing so, you instilled a search for peace and quiet. I can see how the pressure that you and I both share can become an internal pressure cooker, and how valuable finding a quiet space can calm the mind, body, emotions and spirit. I will carry with me always memories of mushroom hunting, fishing up north, and the silence of an early morning duck marsh. Dad, thanks to you for showing me how messy this world really is and how to hold myself in clarity and determination in pursuit of living the life I want to live.

Both of you showed me how to expand my world through travel and new to me spaces and places. As you know, I am passing that on to Senka in ways relevant to the times in which we live. Both of you taught me to be highly adaptable. This is a skill I rely on daily.

While I appreciate and love both of you, I also know what I want and need.

I’m going to call some ducks for what they are, ducks. If this truth telling is hard to read, I can understand that. My intent will become clear by the end of this letter.

I grew up in a deeply dysfunctional family that has carried the traumas and wounds of former generations for far too long. Safety and love and security and belonging and clarity are entitlement of each us that forms a tight circle of trust. A child’s worldview contains their parents as if they were god. When the circle of trust is broken through harsh words, commands, criticism, fists, adultification of children, unscrutinized rules, severe anxiety they form a violence to the spirit. Left unchecked and unseen, they fester and block healthy, natural growth.

My reaction to my childhood environment was to become resentful in turn, to blame you for my circumstance. I said things harshly and in spite, hoping that you might feel the same pain that was passed to me. I take full responsibility for my actions and words, created in my own unknowing of myself and the cost of adopting a victim mentality. I hope you both can find space in your hearts to forgive me.

You are loved, unconditionally, by your first born son.

I know that the environment in which I was raised speaks to the environment that both of you were raised in, and know that hurt people hurt people–however unintentionally.

I am taking a break from this family in order to get a full vision of clarity of myself in relationship with a family that I love, yet attempts to continue to bring forms of transgenerational trauma into the present. When the past is unresolved, it springboards into our present and our projected futures. In this way we tie each other down and learn to hold ourselves back.

I have removed the ropes and cords and chains that bind me to the pain of the past. The deep wounds that run through my maternal and paternal lines.

I need space to process and complete the work I have started. I hope you can respect this.

I need space and time to discover myself, free of emotionally triggering experiences of the past that bring me back to spaces and places where those I loved deeply beat the shit out of each other, and used children in their war against one another.

I need space from the rules and reality that I was conditioned into so that I can discover and know myself in new, expansive and profound ways.

I need space to put the past in that past by fully grieving the loss of the childhood I never had.

I need the breadth of experiential learning to discover how to renew how I relate to other humans and to develop my own support network of like minded folk doing amazing healing work and making positive change.

Another lesson of my childhood is obligation. The environment created by my parents was one heavy with expectation and rules that represent one of many, many, many ways of being. Unfortunately, those expectations and obligations have fueled inner conflict between what I want and need for myself and the interests, values and desires of others. I refuse this dynamic, as I have learned how to release the pressure with grace and ease.

The mental, emotional, physical and spiritual violence that I experienced in my childhood homes helped form me into who I am today. While I recognize these lessons, the fists and harsh words and judgements are carried in my body daily. On my best days I am fearless in the face of these challenges, yet when they return in force I can only hold myself tenderly and be the parent to myself that I never had in childhood.

I need the space and time to be me, free of family dynamics that ask me to conform to who you are or your conception of me. I am no longer the scapegoat of this family, the sin eater. I will absorb your blame and shame and resentment and betrayal no more. The circle of trust is deeply broken in this so-called family. Trust is a precious gift.

A parent is gifted with a new life to hold and treasure. That parent is responsible for the environment they create and teach this child into. As a parent we are given a blank slate from which to shape a brand new human. A parent has unlimited choices and possibilities with this child, the ability to create heaven or hell.

I have a right to feel safe with my loved ones.

I have a right to speak my mind, tell my truth and confront the lies this family clings to for safety.

I have a right to my own perspective, choices and process.

I have a right to pursue relationships with others that are supportive, balanced and healthful.

I have a right to individuate from my family of origin so that I can truly know who and what I am.

I choose to do this as kindly as possible, with a deep love for myself, my life, my kid, and our furbabies.

I am taking a break from this family.

I do not yet know how long that break will last.

You all are loved and supported by me and in spirit.

You, Pam; You, William; are loved and supported unconditionally in each and every precious moment of your life by your eldest son as the little kid that looked up to you, that chose to love you even when you hurt me, and that never gave up on either of you, and, despite your flaws, can see your beauty and insight and passion.

Whether trust can be reborn and nurtured between us is a question that I cannot answer. I can only say that I am open to the possibility while declaring my present need for time and space to focus on me, on Senka, and on rebuilding our amazing lives together. I wish you both well and think of you lovingly and often.

So now, I’m going to take a long walk by myself and consider myself in relationship from my birth family and hope that your hearts are open to hearing and respecting what I need in this time and space and place.

All the love

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A dad, a kid, a kelpie and two cat brothers rubbertramping around the country doing our best to live authentic lives while awakening to our birthright. 

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