First, the blog was changed to indicate this is my journal ♥ Hope you like it. Second I’m sorry this post is so long. Now onto the war of love and hate.
Sadly this war has been going on forever…. you may never see it or one day witness it firsthand. I recall the first time I saw it; yet, I was too young to realize it was a war. Like any child growing up in a war zone, it was not until later that I realized it was not normal and it was violent.
I was only 3, how could I possibly know that this would start a war within my heart? How could I know that it was also a foreboding of things yet to come? How could I know how long the scars would take to heal?
At 3 years old, I sat in my grandparents’ breakfast room floor. This was Dad’s parents, Mom’s parents were visiting. Both grandmothers were in the room with me.
“What’s wrong with her?” said Mom’s mom… pointing at me.
“There’s nothing wrong with her.” said Dad’s mom.
“Look at the way she’s sitting!” I looked at the way I was sitting….
Sadly I don’t remember the conversation after that and “something was wrong with her” stuck in my head, becoming a part of my life. The problem was something was wrong with that grandmother and Dad’s Mom knew it.
While Dad’s Mom was kind, to his dad we (his family) were little more than property. Not even very good property. He praised us to others when it was good for him. Ignored us when there was no benefit. As he aged he treated us with hatred. At an event hosted by Dad’s mom’s family (she passed away when I was 5), he followed me around, making rude comments, not accepting “leave me alone.” As an adult, I was being emotionally harassed by someone who only married into the family that was here. Dad finally had to step in to make him stop, while I was reduced to tears.
Less than a year after Grandmother died, Grandad had married again. She didn’t really care for us. She faked love. Between her and Grandad, I was young when I realized something wasn’t right. Since my brother was 5 years younger and my job was to protect him, I told my parents I didn’t like him being around them. We stopped spending time with them without Mom and Dad immediately after.
Eventually she stopped faking love. Eventually they divorced. Yet her influence or his age, turned him into an even more hateful person. Thus he was at that party. Later he became hateful to everyone.
On Mom’s side, her mom treated us with love when we would first arrive. Less than 10 minutes later, it was easy to see we were not the favorites. The cousin would appear who could do no wrong. This was amazing and disturbing to my brother and I as we watched her play Granny. Mom’s Dad loved us. Granny was the only person he loved more (as he should) since she didn’t want to visit us, they didn’t. We visited them, they did not visit us.
Thus a constant battle of love and hate. Always a mixed message, love and hate, hate and love.
The grandads were two extremes, more so than the grandmother of memory and the living one. Dad’s dad lived closer, he visited us. He influenced our family and me in ways that were not good. He said he loved us, but didn’t show it. When he showed love; which was rare, he didn’t utter the words. This twisted message mixed me up. His moments of true love were few.
Mom’s dad lived 800 miles away, then 1000. While the visits were brief and short, he left a seed of love in the dark ground grandad bred. Yet the two extremes kept the message twisting.
As I grew up, for whatever reason I sought men who kept twisting their love messages. The husband who loved me in public, while privately didn’t care. The boyfriends who said one thing and did another. I expected a mixed message rather than one of pure love.
As confused as I was…. I was one generation removed from the battlefront. My parents lived this battle of one parent showing love, and one not…. DAILY. Sometimes they sent confusing messages, yet how could they not? Their examples were twisted. So I grew watching them grow from mixed views to one of love, changing a lot in the last 10 years… oddly during the same 10 years that I’ve sorted through hate and love myself.
But Grandaddy; who loved us, died just 2 weeks ago… and I realized Dad’s dad caused very few tears when he died. My tears were of losing the connection to grandmother. Mom’s mom died last year. We expected Grandaddy to follow soon. But he held on for a year and 30 minutes… and on that Monday morning, the call stopped the world. There was too much do to stop, so after a few minutes it was back to work. On the day of my last post, (8 days after) it finally hit. ½ a box of tissue was used that day. For whatever reason it showed as anger mixed with sorrow.
In my life, hate won for a while. Hate is bitter and hate is scarring. But love is nurturing and growing. We all have a choice on which side we join. Hate is easy, fast, and powerful. Love is hard, slow, yet love is far more powerful. Once the power is finally realized love becomes easier, but just like many things, it is a daily choice, sometimes the choice must be made in a particular moment.
I choose love. I mess up sometimes, sometimes my past echoes forth, but then it’s time to realign back to love.