Thursday, January 31, 2008

Updates and Projections

I'm facing a bit of a crossroads right now with many of the issues I've talked about here. It's hard sometimes to devote the time to thinking about them as it's much easier to not deal with things and focus on the regular issues that are pressing to my immediate family. Things like my kids, the bills, and finding a new job.

My sessions with my therapist continue to go well, and I'm thankful for them. I can't believe the peace that I get from the sessions. It's important because it helps me find a center and allows me to function better and see myself more clearly. It may not appear that way to those around me, but I know my train of thought and I know the difference between how I am processing my life before and after a therapy session. I also know how different it is now compared to how it was prior to starting these sessions.

So, after a bit of a lull, things have picked up in regards to some of the issues I've had and been struggling with. I think the easiest one to talk about first is my father.

I'd be remiss if I didn't use this space to say what I really feel about the man. I basically think he is a tortured man who is mostly a coward, definitely a liar, and a very good manipulator. I can see why he and my mother were attracted to each other when they were younger due to some serious overlap in those traits.

Now, before I go further I need to explain something a bit more than I have in past posts. Previously I've commented on some terrible dark secrets taking place in my childhood without ever going into detail as to what they were. As of this time, I'm still not going to do that. I will enlighten those that read this that I am not centrally involved in this; point blank it didn't happen to me. It still bothers me and it does influence my behavior. It is not even close to being the driving force behind my actions, but its there.

In recent developments, my sister Teri talked to my father about his knowledge of these dark secrets based on what he and I talked about. He lied to my sister about what he said to me. When I talked to him, he acknowledged that it happened, that he knew about it, and that someone else in my family was also aware (but he wouldn't name that person). When Teri asked, he downplayed the incident and completely fabricated what he said he told me. For whatever his reason is/was, it still pisses me off to no end. I'd like to punch him in his lying fucking mouth. Teri says she knew he was lying, probably because it's obvious, but it just sucks that at the age of 60 he still can't be a man and own up to the truth-----especially on a subject that doesn't directly involve him.

I am honestly at the point where I am ready to cut all ties with the man because I just don't see him as someone I even want in my life, and I also don't think he wants to deal with us anymore. I don't know how happy it would make him to know, but he's real damn close to getting that wish. I told Teri that I believe I have the energy in me for one more meeting with him and barring any surprise revelations or changes in his attitude, it could be the last time he sees me or hears from me.

Should I decide to cut him out of my life, I think I need to be honest and say that nothing is ever set in stone and unable to be reversed. But it's a path that won't allow for him to meet his grandkids or for me to speak with him again. That means that should a family get together happen I will diplomatically shun him and if he tries to talk to me I will be as polite and frank as I can in my reminder to him as to why I'm not talking to him.

There are two drawbacks to this form of action though. I want to have a relationship with both of my brothers. We've made small first steps to get this rolling; its too early to say how that would go if things could be repaired with my father. But with the two of us at odds, it's sure to make this harder. I would respect each of my brother's decisions if they didn't want to stay in touch. To them I expect they think my father has been a great dad to them, which by everything I can see, he has. Having me around as a perpetual destroyer of myth may be more than they're willing to handle for their selves and their children (whom I'd one day love to meet.)

The second drawback involves my kids. Although he's known about them since they were born and has supposedly visited their blog, he's made absolutely no attempt to get in touch with me or try to see them prior to my meeting with him last month. I'll be damned if I'm going to let him waltz in and take partial credit for anything to do with them by playing the part of the proud grandpa. They already have two grandfathers; my wife's dad and my adopted dad Lou Cicirello Sr, who I love dearly and was there for me with advice, love, and openness when I needed it most. To me and my kids, he is their grandpa, and we will always think of him as such.

In more succinct terms, my father is on the way out the door and out of my life on a train of his own actions and poor choices

That brings me to my mother, and that's a whole other bag of tricks right there. I've tried to be diplomatic and as fair as possible in dealing with her, and despite the emotions that come up, I'll still attempt this, but I'm also not going to pull any punches either.

First off I have no idea why she feels the need to have her cousin Jan read these posts to her over the phone. My mother is staying at her sister's house and she could just as easily read this on her own. It was different when she lived with my sister Traci and they didn't have internet access, but now it feels almost dirty, like two old ladies gossiping over the fence. I don't care if Jan sees this, or anyone for that matter, but the whole thing comes off as odd to me. And before anyone asks, all the information as to who looks at these sites is recorded for me and I can see that and a slew of other information about their visits.

I have not spoken to my mother since October 15th. It was a Monday and it was two days before I had my left hand reconstructed with pins and screws and other fun stuff, so I remember this vividly. I know she's been pestering my sister Teri about how upset she is that I haven't called. The funny thing is that I didn't call on Thanksgiving, I didn't call on Christmas, and then recently I didn't call on her birthday. It should be obvious I'll call when I'm damn good and ready to. One of her biggest concerns is that she believes she'll never get to see my kids again. I'll be completely honest here and say that is absolutely a possibility. Nothing has been decided about that yet and it's nothing I've been specifically thinking about either, so it's not like I'm leaning one way or another. That's something I'll have to examine more at a later date.

I'll be honest and I'll say that those dark secrets of my past have something to do with this stance I have with my mother, but it's far from comprehensive. There are so many other issues that I have with her, it's not even funny. Frankly I find it offensive that she would think she's entitled to anything from me at all at this point. For those who may not remember or haven't gotten any specifics as to why I have these issues with my mother, let me remind you that these are things that happened as a child and a young adult and even as an adult. She's lied to me about reasons for borrowing money, she's stolen money from me by writing bad checks on a checking account I had (that she was listed on for emergency purposes), as a child there were several instances when she beat me with large objects like baseball bats and motorcycle helmets, she blatantly favored my younger sister Traci over Teri and I to such dangerous levels that we ended up becoming homeless due to her not paying rent and other bills that she could have afforded based on her income at the time, belittled me in front of her friends and our family members for situations that she caused, her role in the whole "Dark Secret" issue which I still haven't been able to get a full absolution of, repeatedly telling me and my sisters that we were a burden and that she wished "I never had you fucking kids," strangely that would often happen whenever we'd do something that was either a normal kid thing or something that would interfere with her attempts to go out or go after a man, and then finally there was her betrayal at the hospital.

That's all really the tip of the iceberg and I could go on with more and more nasty stuff, but I'm really not trying to piss on her. Sometimes I need to vent a bit and recite some of the many things she's done in the past. It is a necessary and healthy part of my therapy. The reason for this is that she's not a very nice person. Her actions speak louder than any words she has ever said. Even to this day she continues to be a burden to her kids and family when she's at an age (59) in which she should be working and living on her own. And despite her issues that inhibit her, she doesn't make any real attempt to correct this. As a parent the last thing I would want to do to my kids is to take away their freedom to live their own life and instead have to take care of me when I'm at an age and health in which I should be taking care of myself. All of that is really the issue for me.

I've seen her use my sisters kids like peons, having them get everything for her so she doesn't have to get out of her chair. I've seen her directly counter the wishes and desires of my sisters in disciplining and raising their kids, and manipulating them. She plays favorite with the kids too. Her hold over my nephew David is so strong that he was floored to hear that I actually love my mother. He literally had to be convinced that this wasn't a lie because he said that's not what his grandma has told him. I don't know how that happens or comes up, but its very existence is sad and damaging to me.

What it boils down to is that if I take the fact that she is my mother out of the equation, this would not be the type of person I'd want to associate with, let alone expose my kids to. But when you make this person my mother, then the results are that much more damaging and dangerous to all those around her.

So where am I? I don't know. I feel that I am in a losing situation no matter what I do. I'm going to wrap this up because it's late and I have a psychiatrist appointment in the morning and I need some sleep at least. In the end I have some really shitty parents. Parents who have lied, manipulated, and in some cases stolen from me and I just don't know if it's worth it to continue to have that stress in my life or to expose my children to them.

The point of this blog is and has been to be an outlet for me to discuss my feelings without interruption. It's important that I say this from time to time so that it reinforces my motivation to those few family members I have that read this. And just as I said when I started this blog, once I am at a point that I feel at ease with these issues, this blog will be going away.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Quandries and Insomnia

The whole issue of being bi-polar has really been weighing on me for the last two weeks. I was really set against it, for all the reasons I elaborated on in my last post, but my therapist put an interesting spin on the entire issue when she hinted that I might never be able to deal with my out standing issues and depression unless I have that checked out and determine if I indeed have that and exactly to what extent it is effecting me. There must have been something to that because in the days following my last session with her, I've really dwelled on that and it's got me curious enough to proceed for the time being. To that end I've arranged for a meeting with a psychiatrist on the 31st of this month.

Despite that, I'm not happy about this. It may be pride, or ignorance, or a mixture of both, but I find this prospect to be demeaning and it makes me even more depressed. Instead of having a self image of strength and power, I feel broken and empty as a result of this. In many ways it feels like I've opened Pandora's Box and I've been swallowed by apathy. It has become an almost impossible struggle to just complete each day's tasks and responsibilities. I'm at a point where I just want to be happy and healthy, but the harder I try to get to that point, the more I discover problems. I truly feel alone in a way I've never felt before.

My bouts with insomnia continue and I find myself wondering about my family. Although my therapist says I've made great strides, I still feel an incredible amount of anger at both my mother and my father. Sometimes I sit up at night in my chair, pondering everything they've done to me its all I can do to keep myself in check and not let out a giant yell or search for something to break.

The problems with my mother are deep, too deep for me to fully explore even here. The worst part is that I'm at a point in which I'm forced to wait patiently as other pieces of that game are played before I can move again. Yes that's cryptic, but I do have family who read this and until the past is brought to light, I have to be guarded.

My father presents his own unique set of problems. It's been about a month and a half since I talked to him and I keep playing the whole conversation over and over in my head. I realize that from the very first exchange I was in shock by what he said and even how he looked. Of course as he continued to open his mouth and spit out lies and surprises I truly found myself at a loss and unsure of exactly what to say or do. His revelation that he knew about the ..... dark parts of my childhood, still leave me bewildered by his inaction. For me that has redefined him to the point that I feel I have more in common with a bear than I do him. I can't ever accept his reasons or excuses and I feel I need to tell him this in no uncertain terms and let the chips fall as they may.

On the other side of all this, I've now had contact with both of my brothers. I'd truly love to talk to them more and possibly rekindle our relationships, but I'm concerned the rift between my father and I may not allow this. No matter how horrible and despicable my father was concerning me, he was the exact opposite to my brothers. Where I may loathe him, they will rightly love and admire him. I don't know if they'll ever be able to accept how I see him. So I go back and forth with wondering whether or not I should pursue these relationships until I've had a chance to talk to my father one last time.

Friday, January 11, 2008

One More Thing

As I've continued through this little journey of mine, I've had my shares of ups and downs, which I've tried to share here on my blogs. I think overall I've handled things well and made great strides. Hell, I'll even go so far as to give myself credit and say that I don't think most people could handle my affairs with the success and aplomb that I have.

Despite this, recently Meva has grown increasing concerned over my behavior. My recent bouts with insomnia and sleep got her to thinking and she had me go through a test and believe I may be bi-polar, suffering from a less dramatic sequence of manic episodes. She'd like me to meet with a psychiatrist a drug program to help control my manic episodes.

It's not a shock that I'm not too thrilled about this latest turn. My whole point in going to counseling was to heal by confronting my past and my family that have served to be huge debilitating issues that reach from the past into the future. Suffering from bi-polar disease would be another hassle for me to deal with at a time in which I already have a full card. It's really more than I want to tackle right now, and here's why.

The test Meva gave me isn't definitive, but its portent is strong. What would happen next would be a more thorough interview with a psychiatrist who will evaluate me and then begin prescribing a series of drugs to deal with this. Obviously there will be side effects to whatever I'm prescribed, but it's worthless to think about at this time. What concerns me is that finding the right combination and mixture of drugs isn't always easy and often requires many visits and adjustments to whatever cocktail they come up with. Again, more hassles that will make my already difficult schedule even more hectic, not to mention the costs of the office visits and pills.

Overall, what concerns me the most is the effect the drug treatment will have on my mental capacity. The last thing I want is to become sluggish, dull, and unable to focus. It can get to a point that you no longer feel like yourself anymore and I've heard stories about it really making people apathetic to everything.

This is the exact type of development that could interfere with my counseling and progress, let alone my mind in general. Could it effect my writing, either in desire or proficiency? I don't know. This is what I'll be weighing over the next week or so. Getting "better" at the potential cost of losing myself is a difficult decision to make and one I'll need to research more.