A Fanatic’s Stand

11705167_974787129284904_7041944126048647665_nI stood as tall as I could for you. Standing right by your side. Ready to defend. Ready to pounce. You asked me to embrace silence. Simply listen. Be a witness. At first I refused. I boldly declared I would not sit at the table idle while bullshit was spit in our face. While wild accusations, unfounded statements, and finger pointing were inevitable.  Family drama is a hard game to play. Honestly, I don’t feel apart of the in law family anyway. Yet, I do not want my name, my compassion for others drug through the mud.
I think perhaps my compassion and empathy were pushed aside by my ego.  His side of the family is challenging. Mental 11403411_974787199284897_772848918054778421_nillness, rage, black and white thinking, denial, and blame run rampant. If I take a step back, that is also a day in the life of the fanatic at times.  I unconsciously packed my knee pads and shoulder pads for defensive and or offensive tackles. I was blind to this approach. My good friend had to point out to me that some in the family are sick and maybe I had the wrong hat on.  My helmet was simply designed to protect my husband as I believe he is a good man, and I hate to see him hurting at the hands of his own family.  If anything, they are unable to see how hard he tries.  But an empathetic hat could free me of needing to play hard ball.
How do you emotionally support someone else and protect yourself? This was the defining question of the trip for me.  Every 11694958_974787359284881_7962206104160224965_nyear I gear up for this, prepare. I place demands on myself that I will be the supportive one. I will rise up and be the strong spouse he needs me to be.  All attention and love will be directed his way.  The negativity oozing out of buffalo is powerful. It’s so easy to get swept up into resentments, old anger, shame.  Often my husband begins to question his own worth, his place, in the midst of the chaos.  I want to swoop in and reassure him he is okay, they are the bad guys.  But, you know what I didn’t do that. I sat patiently and heard his every single word, every single sigh, every single emotion.  I was present for his struggle.
I protected myself by breathing. Being open to his pain, but not needing to embody it as well. That was the most difficult for me as I’m a very sensitive person.  The trip was somewhat tainted by this air of confusion and hurt. I also hurt internally as some 11707660_974787155951568_4667623480132897462_nthings were said about me that assaulted my character.  I was shut down during a heated conversation.  I sometimes was the brunt of frustration.  But my love for my husband and my belief in him never wavered.  I continued to stand tall.
As I arrive back home to the safety of my surroundings I feel my own emotions bubbling. I am tired. In need of some self care. Maybe in need of a good cry.  I think I can look in the mirror and say I was the strong supportive wife I had hoped to be. I said few words, but my presence was powerful.  I held his hand,as he always holds mine, when he needed it most.
11144416_974787355951548_7417282000083361679_nI’m not stroking my own ego as I write this.  In my mind it’s my “duty” to support my husband. It’s just in reality, sometimes I can’t be present. Sometimes I have no strength.  Sometimes I am lost in the mire and unable to support myself.  I guess I am trying to acknowledge there are also times bipolar has got nothing on me.

123 RV, RW, JZ, PA, SA, Dwight, Virgil, Tom S, and all the “Dogs,” in Sac!

finger touching nose of babyPointy boy is also a guardian of the blog.  He guards our ability to have fun here! Thank you Ajaytao.

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