Last night I attended a family dinner for my mother’s birthday. As I mention in the book, Identity Crisis, Identity Christ Is: A Journey to Love there is this toxic ongoing relationship with my family. I made a choice this year that even after the recent falling out has subsided that I would choose love. I mention that love is an action word, and that I had made a personal choice to separate from my family in order to identify more closely with the way that I desire to be; healthy. Sometimes in families we tend to revert to the way that people see us as children or teenagers. Families don’t allow us to live in our ever-changing skin they want to rest on the fallacies that we possessed in the past. In the book, I talk a lot about generational curses, and I express openly some pains of the past that I certainly do not want to take into a marriage.
So, separation has been an opportunity because a situation happened earlier between my niece and I, that without any communication to get the truth made my sister stop talking to me. It has had long lasting effects because it ruined relationships within the family.
After reevaluating where I want to be in life, and looking at the choices that the women have made in my family I really want to marry the right person. Sometimes when you enable toxic relationships, you can subconsciously support those same toxic energies that bring the wrong people to you.
At the family dinner, I expected for my family to be cool as they always are. They ignore the issues and pretend that nothing ever happened. For me on the hand, I began to have chest pains that got stronger and stronger as I approached the restaurant. I don’t know if for the past few weeks I have been having stress related or panic attacks, but the thought of having family dinner drew pains more intense as I thought about sitting at the table and having to connect with them. After all, I have never been to an outing with all of my family all at once, ever. And, I can still say that because one of my brothers, who I really wanted to see, was not present because he had to work.
The sister, Tamara that I have an issue with right now, and haven’t spoken to since February of this year sat right next to me. I don’t think it was purposeful on anyone’s part, it just kind of happened. We sat at the table quite for what felt like forever until my brother made a joke about the odd duck “silence” in the room and started us laughing all at once. My mother I am sure was really happy to have us there together.
What broke the ice was the fact that we had to pray for the food, and holding hands was required. I’m all for prayer, it wasn’t uncomfortable at all actually to reach for my sister’s hand. What was uncomfortable however, was holding it through the prayer. In my head I was like, “Jesus thank you for this food…bless it” and scene! As if I was calling all actors to end the segment of taping or something.
Deidre was talking to me about something, and Tamara had all the answers. It’s not what you think, she was right. It is so hard to have these tarnished relationships with family because you are blood. We all look alike, we walk alike, and our bodies are shaped alike so we look similar small or fat. I think that Tamara and were very close, closer than any of us would like to admit at this point in our lives. We ordered the same exact thing only I knew that she would want her sauce in a ramekin on the side of her plate so that she could dip her salmon, and she knew that I would hate the sauce but since we weren’t talking she couldn’t warn me. She also knew that the waiter brought me my meal without my special sauce, ketchup. I had to make an announcement at the table for all negative comments to please fall back and as everyone looked at me with a stuck face while the waiter stood there they all got it at the same time. KETCHUP!!!
Tamara knew everything that I wanted before I could say it, but my resistance to eye contact left us at peripheral eye vision to communicate. At some point during the night the peripheral vision was not enough, and we made that special eye contact with a stuck face right before a bellow of laughter would come out. I think the whole table was surprised. I didn’t participate on purpose, but the moment reminded me of the special bond that sisters and sister friends have when non-verbal communication is all they need to go laughing crazy.
Although I forgive me sister, and this family event showed me that I do love my family, I am still going to be an agent of change. I am not going to walk around as if nothing has happened. When folks want to get rid of some of these communication curses I’m here. Until then, it was pretty nice to have that sister moment over something funny. It made me miss my sister.
I can always make my sister turn red. She’s the reason that I know I’m funny. It sucks that things have to be so tumultuous, but I stand on my word that I will only entertain healthy balanced, loving relationships in every area of my life. For once, I am not going to mend anything. When folks are mature enough I am open as always.
Happy Birthday Mom