You are so blinded by your fear.
Wanting to belong and yet afraid to be seen.
Hiding in the shadows and wondering why no-one notices you.
You became so afraid of what others think that you stopped trying to find out.
Assuming it would be different.
Guessing what it might be.
Maintaining your fears and anxieties.
Feeding them daily with mistrust and disguise.
Making up your own truth
A truth full of lies.
I’m not the child you hoped to raise.
I’ve known it for a long time.
I’ve known it always.
No explanations for punishments, just a wooden spoon to the thighs.
No resolution of arguments
You just pretend it’s alright.
While your grudge simmers deeply.
I open up to you and you attack.
So my vulnerabilities I hide.
Then you wonder why I don’t share with you what’s happening inside.
“You’ve always been different”
words I’ve often heard you say.
“I just don’t understand you”
has received equal play.
Perhaps these were your signals,
from very early on
That your ideas about the person you were raising,
If you’d looked you might have noticed that what you wanted
I wore the right-sized clothing,
Your expectations didn’t fit
For so long I swam amongst them
Trying not to drown
I did my best to wear them
For years I dragged them ’round
Eventually I found courage
to explore some different paths.
Alternative as they are,
they are the best fit I have found
You taught me to fear others opinions
And that I would be outcast
Your fear of not belonging kept you lonely
Your message of low self value
I’m seeing it clearly at last
An ancestral line so filled with pain.
Is this your legacy?
A message of ‘never good enough’
this line, it stops with me.
“You just have to be different don’t you?!”
From you I’ve often heard.
My choice was ‘different’ or self-destruction.
Which would you prefer?
You do not see the damage
inflicted by the words you say.
‘I can’t, I won’t, I don’t accept’
When I told you I was gay.
Months and years later
Your words ring true to this day.
Dad sat back in silence.
His silence speaks volumes each day.
I had the clothes, I had the toys,
the car and other things.
What I needed was your love
That thing that isn’t things.
I needed you to see me –
who I am rather than who I “should” be.
I know now that can’t happen
You love too much the daughter
you hoped that I would be.
You refuse to say goodbye
To a daughter that never existed
You prefer to believe your own facade
You say I’m the one who’s twisted
I’ll never be her
She isn’t me
I’m ok with not being
Who you want me to be
I let go of my anger
And my pain
I don’t waste my breath
There’s no need to explain
They hold you hostage
And my words would be in vain
When you’re ready to meet your daughter
Just reach out and call my name
A bit more angsty than usual this time around. I had some challenges with my folks recently and this time I listened differently and spent some time really reflecting on where their issues lay and where they came from. After all we are are all shaped by our past experiences – of joy, of suffering, and everything in between.
As parents there is also that divide between the hopes and dreams they had for me and my life… and then the realities of who I am and the paths I have chosen. What makes me happy is different to why they expected, and different to what they perceive to bring happiness. And it’s totally ok for us to hold these differing ideas.
It’s not my responsibility to change their minds or heal their wounds, and at the same time I am also not obliged to continue to expose myself to attack. What I can do is hold them in a place of compassion and have faith that with time they can do the same for me.
In the meantime (and always) I hold deep deep gratitude and appreciation for the many people in my life who love and accept my most authentic self.
With lots of love from my crooked curve of the world.