Pyxidragon is taking baby-steps
Family is a huge trigger for me. More specifically, my family. Most of them, I’m quite content to have a live-and-let live policy. And if I’m only around them for a few hours, I’m just fine. Heck, sometimes I can even manage a whole day without too many issues.
And then there’s my mother. She refuses to take meds for her own mental issues (and there are plenty), and it took years to realize that not all mothers are passive-aggressive-bipolar. Unfortunately, that’s not a relationship I can sever, despite the obvious toxicity of it. Being around her causes all sorts of destructive tendencies in me, and she just left after being in town all weekend to celebrate my son’s 15th birthday.
I thought I’d escaped pretty cleanly (only the faintest increase in my usual desire to smoke through the stress of her being here). Until I called her on my way home today and got an earful about what an awful husband I have because he (wait for it) made the child re-do the dishes before he could go spend a week with her and my dad. It was a 15 minute delay in their trip.
She didn’t say a word about it to my husband. She waited till I was on the phone to vent at me. And when I had the nerve to defend him and our parenting techniques, I was told “Well, you can believe what he tells you, but I’m telling you the truth.” Did I mention the mental issues?
Upshot is I was stressed out enough by this conversation that I sat on the front porch and had a smoke. The first one in over a year. Wanting a cigarette’s not unusual. I quit smoking cold turkey shortly before I got pregnant. Do I want one? Yes, I usually do. Even around a bunch of people smoking, I refuse until I’m stressed nearly to tears.
Really, I’m just disappointed that I let myself have one and am now trying not to spiral into a “Well, I’m a bad person anyway so I deserve for my mother to treat me like that and the cigarette proves that I’m weak and bad and…”
Honestly, I know better. I just don’t know that I’ll ever get over feeling helpless when my mother acts crazy and lashes out at me for things I can’t control.
So, for right now, it’s basics. Have a cup of tea. Handle one thing at a time. Remember that I’m strong, fierce, and loving. And most of all, breathe in and out. If nothing else, just keep breathing.