There is a void that exists in every child without parents. In every person who lost a dear one to death. In every mother or father without child, despite a longing.
That void, taught me something today. And although I had heard its whisper before, I didn’t like what it said. So I never listened.
Today, it raised it’s voice. So I had to.
Losing my parents at the age of 15, although in reality much younger, left me vulnerable to having a hole in my heart, mind and soul. This led to me searching years for ways to fill it.
I had the missing ghost-like shapes looking for puzzle pieces that would never fit. Attempting to fit the corners into rounded edges and end pieces into corners.
I found a match as close as I would get. I found individuals to take the place of my biological mother and biological father. I wanted them to be my parents and they wanted to have me as their child. They would have, if they found me at the right time.
They had parties and celebrations for me, supported and loved me. I was one of their own. Almost. Because the puzzle piece wasn’t exactly the right fit.
In my head, I began creating expectations of these individuals. I had the expectations of them, that I would with a parent. I rather strongly pushed myself into their life, I would push ever so gently at the puzzle piece edge, dampening the cardboard with the saliva from my tongue, so that the paper became more moldable. I attended all the family events, including biological family only events. I spoke to them every day as I felt I needed to hold on tighter. I thought that maybe if they spoke to me every day, they would like me the best. I created a whole world where they were my parents. But, they weren’t. And I don’t think they knew they were.
Sometimes, this led to fights, tears or disappointment because I would have one idea of an outcome and they would have another. They also had expectations of me that I sometimes did not fulfill, because I was not their daughter, as they were not my parents (when I didn’t want them to be). As years went on, this also built a silent animosity against my cousin. I loved my cousin. But the hurt that was coming from me seeing them provide her with the outcome I wanted, turned into frustration. I couldn’t communicate this in any other way than being unkind to her at times.
Today, I got some news which made me truly think about how much longer I would put pressure on the two people who truly tried to connect with me over the years and provide me with a form of biological family acceptance. My aunt was worried about letting me know the news she had to share as she knew I would be impacted. Two things came to my mind as I experienced strong emotions ranging from anger to devastation to feeling guilty for putting myself before my uncle needing her more. They brought forward the opportunity for a deeper conversation with myself and the reflection on the energy I have both outputted and taken from others.
- What would it feel like to be thankful for the relationships I have, for what they are? Rather than try to re-create them into relationships they were never meant to be. What would it look like, if I said to myself: “This is a great relationship. It is great just the way it is and I am not going to try to alter it to fill a void”.
- What would it feel like for the people I have attempted to fill a very deep void with? Would it be freeing to them as well? Would it be freeing for me to be thankful for everything they have done and will do, without the pre-formed expectations I created based on a roll I forced upon them?
The last six months have led to more reflection and healing around relationships in my life than I have done in years.
My healing today came from the void.
It came up behind me like a grim reaper, wrapped its arms around me and whispered in my ear, “Im sorry I exist Jess. But darling, It’s time to stop looking, so you can one day be the mother you did not have”. With that, it held my hands and said, “Peace”.
I give myself permission to stop looking today.
I give all the individuals who fill roles they were never meant to play, the freedom to fill the role they were meant to.
- An uncle
- An aunt
- A friend
- An acquaintance
- A boss
- A sibling
- A cousin
- An aunt I am closer to
- A best friend
- An uncle I am closer to
- A cousin I am closer to
- An enemy
- An older friend
- A younger friend
These relationships would be less frustrating and more appreciated if I was thankful for what they were rather than continue to attempt to fill voids they don’t fit in. This would also eliminate the relationships I found myself having with older men, hoping that one day they may walk me down the isle.
How freeing it would be,
To just accept.
To be thankful.
To eliminate non-serving expectations.
To make peace with my void.
and to Void Categorized Relationships.
Photo credit: Google search “relationship art”. Original artist: @memoriesofalion