NOW vs. THEN. Yeah, so being a kid sucked mostly for LittleMe and yet I loved my parents despite it all. It was engraved into my bones to love, my blood family left a lot of scars but I had no clue how to heal them for decades. These kind of wounds most people would avoid remembering or hide them out of embarrassment, perhaps drink themselves to death over and usually don’t deal with at all. Some self harm, turn to heroin or jumping off buildings, but I am not recommending either as a way to cope. I chose to keep going back to both parents despite my BaDDaD’s very inappropriate behavior and his con man fuck ups and maybe part of me didn’t care how fucked up he was. At some point, I only knew that my half siblings that kept accruing as his wives and mistresses did would also get hurt or scared or discover what I was told not to talk about. Memories like “Don’t mention that I dated the banker!” then elbowed at dinner, taken aside and given the skinny on his latest scheme aka scam aka great, “manic” huge money making plan that was going to unfold soon. Just follow his lead. He still scams, lies and won’t change. He is not a healthy human being to attach oneself to. For years I sat at the table listening to him lie about everything to his current wife or guests and did wonder often, ” how does she not SEE his bat shit crazy lies?!” His wives and mistresses were intelligent people but he was so convincing. He is a sick man and now I pity him. A life built on twigs, just like the children’s story of the three little pigs. His world fell apart often and he always found another woman to take him in. He is nearing 80 and has no idea what TRUTH is. He will never know. He doesn’t care. Regarding MeanMoM, I at some time had to face her in my 20’s and cry and scream out loud, “WHY DID YOU HURT ME?”. And she would also cry and say crappity crap crap words and I would leave again yet she kept coming back to me. No matter how far I went she came to find me. Over and over again. For redemption. She repeatedly asks for me to be “right with her”. I told her I loved her a gazillion times but I still have anxiety when we are together. “Redemption”, exactly the word written to me before she came this visit. She asked to redeem herself with me. I think you need some Jesus for that. I got nothin’. Nevertheless, she is understood on a deeper level by me now. When she hurts, I hurt. When I hurt she hurts kinda thing. I had to move far, far away from both parents of course and eventually chose to avoid phone calls, dance around visiting with them and I was terrified of trusting anyone. I was diagnosed with CPTSD at 52 years old and I find forgiveness is a relief I never thought I’d achieve. I can now see her also a “victim” of her circumstances and even though she breaks my barriers repeatedly I know she never wanted to be a MeanMoM. And that part of her who hurt me is a scar she lives with. One she feels shame for. We should feel shame if we hurt people. That’s the difference between BaDDaD and NOWMOM. She does get the good versus evil concept. A conscious intention of fighting for the Truth, accepting your ugly parts and owning them is not for weak characters. I have ugly parts. I have pain I inflicted on my partner over the years. I have regrets, but mainly I have the sense to know now that I am not a big ball of nothing. I feel. I am blessed with Truth and it comforts me. My father will never want redemption. Only people with authenticity want to come forward and choose the right thing. I don’t feel sorry for me Now. I feel sorry I was unable to begin to help LittleMe heal so late in my journey. I am here for Littleme. I am piecing who we really are back together day by day, in this old, 1780’s farmhouse, within this beautiful yet complex relationship I have made with another human. One who is perplexed by me yet keeps loving me. I still want to run away when I am scared, but somehow, I know I must stay and look into my husband’s eyes and cry. I don’t have to know why I am crying because I am a whole lot of unanswered prayers and his love is so steadfast despite my unraveling from the seams now and then. Good can still be out there for all of us. And inside the darkness remember there is a ray of sunlight under the doorway at the top of the stairs. Keep climbing.