Sometimes It's Okay To Give Up
This is a serious one, guys. It's very few and far between that I write to be strictly serious. But this one is. This one is painful. This one kills me. This one will NEVER stop hurting. Time might take some of the pain, but the memories will stay and the memories are fucking terrible.
A few days ago I had to say goodbye to someone I haven't seen in years. A relative. No, she didn't die, but our parting was much like a funeral. I had tears and a sick feeling in my gut. There was anxiety and panic and an all around feeling of everything being out of control. But it had to be that way. Our relationship ended the night before.
Sometimes people have addictions. They have a disease. I understand that. I am sympathetic to that because I have struggled with alcohol off and on for a long time. I have used it as a crutch to cope in uncomfortable situations. I have blacked out, done more stupid shit that I care to admit, and have gotten extremely emotional. Ugly cry emotional. I take full responsibility for these things. I have,however, NEVER gotten physically violent with anyone while drinking. This family member has, several times. And she did it with me and her mother on Sunday night while my children slept soundly just mere feet away.
The reason for the attacks is something I will keep in the family, as it is family history that doesn't need to be brought up to a large crowd outside of the blood line. And really, the reasons don't matter. What matters is the action. The drunken rage. The punching, the choking, the horrible things said, the breaking of things. The things that can never be forgiven and most definitely never forgotten. The addiction and mental illness she suffers from is something our family has dealt with for as long as I can remember. We've stood by her through DUI's, jail stints, and as recent as a few months ago, a rehab stay. We have forgiven and welcomed her back with love. We have paid for things, given her shelter, and talked her through crisis after crisis. We have forgiven her for stealing, lying, screaming, and choosing drugs and men over her own children. Our family has suffered, surely more than she has, and we did so because of LOVE.
But love can't conquer all. Love can't stop an alcoholic. Love can't make a person take their medication. Love can't stop the rage. Love can't control a person who is uncontrollable. And so I had to walk away. I had to sever ties. I had to drag my bruised and battered body into my car and not fucking dare look in the rear view mirror. I had to completely emotionally shut down and give in to the fact that some people will never change, especially when it's apparent they don't want to.
Does that mean it doesn't hurt? Fuck no. As I sit here typing this, I cry. I bawl. I sob for all the good memories, and trust me, there were thousands. Millions even. I cry for the laughs, the tears, the phone calls, and the past. I cry for a future without her in it. For the way my children will never know that despite EVERYTHING, there is a good person in there. There is a genuine loving soul. There is a little girl that never grew up. A little girl that hurts deep down where no one can see. But no amount of good can overcome what happened on Sunday night. No memory can ever erase the train that derailed and slammed into my body. In the upcoming weeks these physical bruises will fade, but the ones in my heart will stay with me forever. And for that I can't look back. I have to give up, and I am finally okay with that decision.
No more with I bat an eye at the jail stints. No more will I take calls from a crack house. No more drunken insults and put downs. I put my hands up and surrender. I give up, completely. Maybe it will end up being one of the best decisions I ever make. Maybe not. But here's hoping it is.