This post is on the personal side, even for me. At my extended family gathering yesterday, I had an opportunity to talk one on one with one of my aunts. We’re both introverted at heart and needed to go downstairs to recharge, where we start talking.
We start off with the topic of losing weight as that’s something we’re both striving for. This leads to a discussion of my mental health and my medications. I explain to her where I am at, and she says she had no idea because I have left her in the dark. I tell her it wasn’t her fault as she tried to reach out and I pushed her away. She says to me, that my old self became lost and I turned into a different person after my initial trauma occurred ten years ago. I agree with her, and I’m inadvertently trying to get some of the good parts back of my old self.
She’s incredibly happy that I feel the way I do about my bipolar, that it is a very small part of me that I don’t think about other than here or in private conversations from time to time. She says it seemed to define me before, but not so anymore – not at all. I also share my desire to reach a point where I can go back to school and pursue a career in writing – at least give it a shot, if you will.
She suggests that I write down my story according to exactly how I feel first, and go from there. It’s hard for me to do that, as this involves real people whom I love and are close to me, and to share that stuff with certain parties would ruin them. The main one being that my mom played a very big role in pushing me over the deep end early and initially. I know that going over the deep end would be inevitable, but that’s how things went down. My aunt points out I need to get these feelings out sometime that I hold tight to in order to protect others, that it’s not good to keep them in. I know I’ve shared plenty with my therapist, but that’s different than sharing it with family or friend.
I also realize, something I failed to tell my aunt yesterday, that I pushed her away because of other extreme extended family drama from ten years ago and I feared I would repeat that pattern by opening up to her about my feelings.
It’s taken 10 years for me to have a truly meaningful personal conversation with extended family like that. It’s unfortunate, but it is what it is.
4 thoughts on “Opening Up to My Aunt”
First of all, I have to say this is one awesome post! I hear you so clearly. I can relate to you very much, and I am not just saying that either… Ten years ago I snapped and experienced my first mania. So much happened and so much has changed since then both in my life and the world around me. I never thought I would be where I am now ten years ago. I too am reaching back to see if I can get a hold of some of the good things about the old me, but for the most part I think I’ve been remade because of all of this-like a tree being pruned for its season.
Family is everything! Its the most delicate and important thing in this world that we are fortunate to have if we are blessed to have them. I am so proud of you for being so bold and just straight forward with everything 🙂 I too have had hard feelings toward others in my past, a lot of it illness related, my perception of things was off because of manic times and depression.
It is not unfortunate that it has taken you this long to release, it is “The big step”!!! You have made a huge leap in your journey of life! Like a beautiful lily you are in bloom, opening up as you can. You are coming upon ‘your season’ now! You deserve to be happy and to experience true peace. I think that blogging here is a perfect way to start things and that going back to school when you feel is the right time to head in the direction of becoming a writer. You are headed in the right direction for sure!
Sorry I turned your comment box into a blog, lol. I just felt the need to reach out because we have similar stories! 😀 God bless! -Mandi
Your response is a blessing! Thank you for sharing and no need to apologize 🙂 I’m finding the parts I always longed for about my old self are popping up again now, which amazes me – I thought most of that person was dead. Things are happening indeed.
I plan on posting more personal stuff in the coming days and weeks.
And I agree – our stories resonate 🙂 Crazy, eh?
Awesome!!! I look forward to reading more of your work! God bless, and have a wonderful weekend!
Thanks, you too!