“Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go” (Joshua 1:9). As a young child, there were so many incidents in my life that made me always ask myself, who I was. And these incidents helped me become the person I am today. There were rough times as well as good times.
If I were to tell you all of them, I would remember half of them. I think some of my incidents really had some impact, and some were just simple ways of life. To tell you the truth, the incident that had the most impact on me has to be when my real father abused my mother and left me at the age of five. I never knew my father. I mean being a baby, you really have no experience or recognition of somebody else. Which makes me think about family. I’ve always had difficulty understanding what a perfect family was and if my family was perfect? People say that a family is generally defined as a family group made up of only a father, mother, and children. Unfortunately, that wasn’t the case for me and my family.
We were a family of 8 but yet we were separated. But who is to say what constitutes as a family, and better yet an ideal family? Family is supposed to be shaped by those that stand by one another, and support each other. These people shape the who within yourself.
Family systems such as these, that love you unconditionally, are like a biological organism. These organisms evolve with the time and circumstances of the ones they love. You can say that in the beginning it was a perfect family, more like the epitome of a perfect family. He was always there for us. Whether it was for my softball games, to a music concert, and to even rides on the bus to our first day of school. He was all we’ve ever wanted in a dad, he was loving, caring and admirable. But one day it all changed not just for him but for all of us. It was all of a sudden this image of an angel was sullied into the shadow of a beast.
It went from “I love you” to “I hate you”…
. all this hate was transferred towards my mother, she was the one to blame, in his mind. At school, I would see kids crying because they didn’t want to go to school, and I was always puzzled because, why would anyone be frightened of school? What could be more frightening than home? Home was the dark shadow of my father, the thud of his punches, or him dragging my mother down the stairs by her hair.
Home was me, shouting out my defence against him, or sobbing in my room. Home was my brothers, not even out of middle school, clinging to my mother’s leg, trying to protect her while my father peeled them off, ordering them to go back upstairs to their rooms. And home was the desperate desire to be the one to make him laugh, to have his attention turned to me, to be his favourite, his number one because I was his little girl and he always made sure I knew that. But like many violent men, he was a charmer to all but a monster at home. My mother finally had the courage to move to another house with us and leave my dad behind. However the abuse culminated, when my father decided to burn our new home down. My dad was eventually arrested that year because of constant abuse towards my mother. Even after all that happened I was devastated to see my father be taken away from us.
I was a daddy’s girl, and it was hard seeing him leave me. As a result of this, I began to struggle with the feeling of not being accepted; I felt abandoned by my own father. For several years, I didn’t really feel like myself. It was hard thinking about how someone who supposedly loved you, could do something so terrible to our family. I have been very hard on myself for a large portion of my life.
I have not been honest with myself and have had implausible desires, setting myself up for frustration. For what reason do I do this? For what reason do I deceive myself? What’s more, more imperatively, for what reason do we enable ourselves to escape with it? When another person deceives me and I get some answers concerning it I go nuts. “How could he mislead me? Does she believe I’m stupid?” however, we mislead ourselves abundantly and even conceal our own lies by tolerating them as truth to promise ourselves that it’s alright. Due to my father leaving me I never saw myself as being good enough. I had to deal with self-perception issues. I have dependably had self-perception issues yet concealed it by deceiving myself. When I was 14 I even attempted to starve myself thin. I would persuade myself that I was content with the way I looked when deep down inside I knew I wasn’t.
I worked so hard to conceal how I truly felt by veiling my actual sentiments. “I’m content with my hips” I would let myself know and “I like my legs,” despite the fact that deep down inside I despised the way I looked. I’m not suggesting that what I was believing was something to be thankful for in any case, it was what I was feeling and overlooking it, or imagining it didn’t exist was doing no good to me, or my self-perception issues, all of this became very exhausting to me, and I naturally just gave up on myself. The leaving of my father and abuse towards my mom made me think less of who I was and think that I was never good enough. Which is the reason why my past relationship never really worked because he did things that emotionally reminded me of my father, but yet I stayed. I kept the hurt and pain to myself, I couldn’t tell my family because we were already going through so much, with finding a new home, and my mom worried about my three eldest siblings in the Dominican Republic that she had to leave behind when she came to the United States, that I didn’t want to sound over dramatic, or be a burden to the rest of my family. However, my mom did always say that “la familia siempre está ahí, pase lo que pase, tu familia es todo lo que tienes al final de todo”, she knew that we weren’t a perfect family but we did have something that meant more, which was a strong bond that no one could break.
Overtime, I opened up to my mom and brother about everything and it felt like a wave of fresh air just came through the windows. Throughout the years I learned a lot about myself. Obliviousness towards my actual self is something I lived with for quite a while.
I learned that self-revelation implies numerous things, It implies finding your motivation in life (we as a whole have a reason), it implies digging deep into your youth and uncovering the encounters that formed you, whether they are great and awful. It implies acknowledging what your convictions are and living by them. The impacts of self disclosure incorporate joy, satisfaction, lucidity and perhaps illumination! The adventure however isn’t generally a simple street. The trip incorporates fear, disarray, misconception, question and truly returning to every one of your decisions in life.
I get a kick out of the chance to allude to it as spring-cleaning of your feelings and your environment (counting the general population in your life). It requires settling on some extreme choices and adhering to them. My trip so far has seen me cut individuals out of my life. I call them the “takers.
” They were takers since I enabled them to be and it wasn’t until the point that I understood that a considerable lot of these connections were uneven and self-revelation that I chose to remove them. It has seen me totally change the course of my life and begin to take after my actual enthusiasm and reason. I have additionally begun to set goals and never again have desires for others approval. This one is extremely hard for me and it’s a work in progress, but I have begun to search inside for answers. I’ve had a few setbacks en route and I have no uncertainty that I will have many more but, I’m not surrendering.
What I know without a doubt is that the voyage merits taking. I am gradually getting to be plainly more settled, more mindful and more tolerant. I am figuring out how to focus on my emotions and comprehend myself better. Too many people nowadays have their own translations of the way a family ought to be. They ought to have a father, a mother, and around three children.
Once more, it’s not composed on stone “Your family ought to be this way!”. Family can come in all shapes and all sizes. You might not have a mother or a father, but rather you can even now have a family. You may live with your grandparents, close relative’s and uncle’s, or even older siblings. A family doesn’t need to comprise of who you live with.
I think about some of my friends at Bates and back home family. Your family is your family. I adore my family the way it is. I was just raised by my mother and older siblings. My mom, brothers, sister and I do fight with each other. Nonetheless, if all that had happened never happened I don’t think I would of have gained an unbreakable bond with my mother, siblings and companions. I adore the family I have. It may not be perfect but they all love me and that is enough and I wouldn’t have it any other way.
In the end pain and hardships are inevitable. No one can escape them. Every single one of us, at some point in our life, will experience pain, suffering and hardships of some form or another. My goal in sharing my story is not to depress you.
Rather my goal is to inspire you. How is this inspiring you might ask? Well it is simple. Being aware of the fact that you will experience suffering is a cause for hope because, unlike many other people, you now have a chance to prepare for it. And people who prepare are never as badly affected as those who don’t. Suffering, pain and hardships are inevitable.
Make sure your preparation for them is also just as inevitable. Because in the end it will make you stronger not only as an individual but as a human in society. “Blessed is the one who perseveres under trial because, having stood the test, that person will receive the crown of life that the Lord has promised to those who love him” (James 1:12).