Growing Pains

One of my favorite shows to indulge in is This is Us. I know, I’m not alone. I discovered it one day after I was sick on the couch browsing through Hulu. I was hooked after the first episode.

My fiancee would often find me sobbing uncontrollably as each episode ended. He finally asked me why I watched a show that left me in such a sad state. My sadness had a lot more attached to it than just trying to figure out the cause of Jack’s death. This show resonated with me in a lot of ways much deeper than Beth and Randall’s bond.

I too like many others was a product of a blended family. I have half siblings, quite a few unanswered questions, a lot of unfinished business and talks that were never had. As the show explores a lot of the character’s histories, it takes me on a mental ride of my own family history and attempt at understanding things better.

Watching the latest episode inspired me to write this blog. A lot of the unfinished business that triggered hurt within my family lead to discord and non-non-existent relationships especially among siblings. See the thing is, it isn’t always as easy as just getting past things. The saying “get over it” doesn’t fix things. 

Some years have passed since I’ve even spoken to members of my family and this used to hinder me severely. I used to carry a lot of the hurt and wonder why getting past things was such a challenge. I used to long for some of the closeness we had as kids. People would often remind me that “life was short” and that the time missed would be regretted one day especially because we never knew what could happen in life. Didn’t they think I knew that? I had often pondered the possibility of God forbid losing someone and never having spoken to them or resolved issues.

Relationships can be immensely complicated. As various individual personalities, we’re all operating from different levels of consciousness. All anyone can do is *try*. Yup. No more, no less. We could want what the other person doesn’t. We could want to pick up where we left off as kids whereas the other person just isn’t in that place. The major key here? Know that there’s no reason to carry guilt or to dwell on what could’ve been. 

This was where years of self work and reality set in. Brokenness within families hurts. There is no denying that. What hurts even more is when the disconnect leads to mental restraints keeping us from living our best present lives. I get it. I was in a dark place mentally for a very long time because I longed for the kind of love we’re taught you can only find in family. 

Life is a series of constantly moving events. There are good and bad experiences. There are times of pure joy and there are the more challenging times that are often here to teach us something. Some of my happiest moments are connected back to those I share blood with but I no longer share my life with. If I was writing these words a few years ago, there would be tears splattered all over this keyboard but that self work I mentioned? That helps. A lot. The truth is, separation sucks. Love and forgiveness, healing and being present are a few key components that have helped me through the sad and dark times. Acceptance of what is makes it easier to move forward and not stay dwelling on the past or stuck on things that are not only in your hands to fix.