rebecoming me, but older and wiser

I’m patient,
most of the time.
I’m strategic
and efficient.
I work best independently,
and I know this well about myself.
I communicate best through writing,
and I know this well about myself.

I keep finding myself in situations where
I’m saying the wrong thing.
I just don’t think it through,
usually I’m just making conversation,
but I see instantly that I’ve said something that
struck a chord or hit a nerve,
and I want to take it back.

I try not to judge other parents;
when I say that I don’t have a TV,
I don’t mean that you shouldn’t.
Whatever you’re doing is probably fine.

It’s hard, too, to look back at a life that I left behind
and admit that I miss it sometimes,
so instead I remind myself of the things I don’t miss about it,
offending those who didn’t leave.

Maybe I just don’t know what else to say.
It may always be hard for me to explain why I couldn’t stay.

And that stupid comment about Dershowitz and Israel.
We were taught two different things,
and maybe you were right:
I went to a school that has had some trouble with its anti-Israel bias,
so what I probably should have said was,
“That’s an interesting point, and I never considered that I might be biased.”

But instead I made it seem like I knew better than you.

I suppose I still have trouble
figuring out who I am,
because
by the time I left my abusive relationship,
I was a shell of who I had been,
and I’ve spent the last two years
trying to remember and reclaim that person,
but it’s tough to figure out
which ways I’d grown
and which ways I’d been damaged.
I tried to erase it all,
start from scratch,
but I couldn’t do that either.

The last few years have brought so many changes.

I just have to figure out what to kill
and what to keep.

On the bright side,
I still have my whole life ahead of me.

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4 thoughts on “rebecoming me, but older and wiser

  1. I think it’s wonderful that you are trying to more aware of how what you can say off the cuff or unintentionally can impact or possibly offend and hurt others. But never go so far that you’re criticizing yourself for everything you said that could have been hurtful or offensive or interpreted wrong. You will drive yourself mad. None of us are perfect. None of us have total control over our mouths, and yes our life experiences influence that. Our education, our families, our culture, the region we grew up in. We also can’t control how someone else responds to what we say or how they feel about what we believe. We don’t know everyone else’s circumstances and their background. It’s impossible to know all the time when something we say might offend or hurt. We can try to be more aware, but we will occasionally misstep and say something that can end up hurting or offending even with the best of intentions. So in those instances where we do hurt or offend, all we can do is apologize and try to do better going forward.

    I think you need to remember that you can never fully be who you were before you were abused. It changes us in ways that may take months or years to fully understand. There are things about us that survive the devastation. We just have to learn to fit them in somewhere with the new pieces we create as we rebuild ourselves and our lives. We emerge with more flaws but they can be remedied. We are not totally emptied of ourselves. There will always be core pieces that remain – and in the first days and months of healing, those pieces we pick up from the rubble, dust off, and glue back in are blessings. Slowly we see we aren’t totally strangers to ourselves. The tough part is learning how the remaining holes get filled in. in the beginning it can be burdensome but somewhere along the way that begins to change into something beautiful. Really, how many of us get a second chance to create our individual selves again? How many of us get another chance? Even if the slate is cracked, you can still write on it.

    What I’m trying to say to you is be forgiving of yourself. Be patient with yourself. Love yourself. We have endured horrible things. Parts of us we may have loved before may never come back. We can say dumb things because our backgrounds influence it or because something about our thinking changed after the abuse. But you are not alone in this battle. We all carry our faults with us now. But the difference is, just like you’re doing here, we see them, acknowledge them, own them, admit them, share them, and work on changing them. That’s all we can do, love. We are works in progress.

    And your work in progress is beautiful despite your flaws. ❤ Love you to the moon and back.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Reblogged this on Picking Up the Pieces and commented:
    I needed this post today, and it showed up in my reader. For those of you who still struggle with working out flaws, self confidence issues, and trying to figure out who are supposed to be now after abuse, this post is for you. Be loving and patient with yourselves. Just because the war is over doesn’t mean there aren’t still battles to wage. You are works in progress, and you are divine, you are beautiful, you are amazing. ❤

    Liked by 1 person

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