I know I have been off the grid for a few weeks, but I have been busy unpacking and getting my car and sorting all of THAT out and generally getting my shit together and this last weekend I went home for my cousin's birthday.
This trip was..interesting for several reasons. I had a day of extreme bad luck- even for me! I managed to fracture my toe in a completely mundane way (I stubbed it in the dark). Yes, that's right, I have been a dancer/gymnast for over 20 years and emerged pretty much unscathed, but have broken not one, but two toes just by stubbing them at different times. WTF?
Then my mother's very expensive, very technomological car decided to shit itself resulting in a flat tyre, two different flat keys and then a flat battery which meant that I had to call my mother to come and rescue me- and my poor friend whom I had car pooled with- at 12.30am.
This did not go down well and as per usual I was blamed for each and every one of the above events, even though it could have just as easily happened to her and the flat key battery warning had already been showing on the car for a week and the battery thing was completely inexplicable because there was nothing actually ON on the car and there was a fucking nail in the tyre which could have gotten in there at any point and probably did before I had even started driving the damn thing.
As you can tell, I was not a happy bunny about this, mostly because it relates to a bigger issue that she is unable to take responsibility for shit and just wants to blame someone else all the time. Sigh.
This ties in nicely with some intense conversations I had with another friend about how just because someone is related to you doesn't automatically give them a right to be in your life. Not that I would cut out my Mum or anything, but that's more because her brand of bullshit and drama I can live with, as while it drives me nuts, I know it is not deliberate or malicious and she is a good person at the end of the day.
My dad however has no part of my life and never will and my friend was shocked about this, because her father is also a shit head, but she had never actually considered what I did as an option and she almost swallowed her tongue when I told her that not only did I do it, but I did it more than 10 years ago.
And it was bizarre, because I suddenly realised that it had actually been a decade and that I don't even think about it- or him- any more. It wasn't even that hard, that was the crazy thing, I made this massive life decision and I have never questioned it, it was absolutely, 110% the best decision I have ever made for myself.
I know lots of people don't understand it and think that I'm holding a grudge or being a bitch or whatever, but the thing is- and this is what I said to her- they can think whatever the fuck they like because they actually have no idea what he did and it's not their life, it's mine and I don't regret it.
And the thing is, the reason that people say that I should forgive him or whatever is (apart from the fact they don't have any concept of the sheer immensity of what I would have to forgive) is just because that is what society dictates, that family should automatically get some sort of exemption in terms of how they treat you.
Well I say bollocks to that- what, he contributed half of my genetic information, so that means anything he ever does is acceptable, no matter how heinous? Seriously? If he was anyone else, there would be no question of forgiving him or allowing him to be around, so I don't get why people think that it's a different set of rules just because we're related.
I say FUCK THAT. I choose to surround myself with people that I love and respect, who don't treat me like shit and yes, I do apply the same rules to my family. Being a part of my life if a privilege, NOT a right, I don't care who you are.
And it was honestly fascinating, having this conversation about things that I truly believe to the point where I don't even think about it, it's just the way things are with someone from the outside. Her complete shock and interest in this very simple idea that I live by was kinda surreal. She had honestly never even contemplated applying her criteria for friendships to her family and I could just see the wheels turning in her head and every word I was uttering actually blowing her mind.
I didn't tell her what to do, I just gave her a totally different set of options to what she had ever considered. It was quite cool.
NB: Part of me really does hope she kicks his arse to the curb though, coz he sounds like a dick.
And so dear readers, if any of you are reading this, I encourage you to think about this concept: You are an adult and NOBODY has an automatic right to be a part of your life, particularly if they are making it worse rather than better.
Only you can decide how you want to be treated and what behaviour you will and won't allow, but please stop and think about this: If someone you were friends with exhibited this same behaviour, would you be okay with it? And if the answer is a resounding 'Of course not', then just think about why it's okay for that person then. Just once. And see how that goes. Hell, you might even like it.