Cafe Hitch-hike


Rolling the boulder up the hill

I am like Sisyphus with the boulder, except my boulder consists of fleas. More vacuuming, mopping, and napalming the house. More handling things with almost OCD-like precision. The dog has had her fur combed and shampooed more times than she'd ever want to happen. I think with this final round, I'll be throwing out what I suspect is the main vector, my old mattress. I've been in the market for a new one for quite some time, so it's fitting to eject that thing. I just made sure I sprayed the hell out of it and covered it in borax before I have my neighbor help me dispose of the fucker.

It's been going on 2 weeks since I've had to deal with this trouble. I guess my next step will be to cover my sofa and every soft surface with borax, and leave it like that for the time I'm gone.

I'm heading up north. The plans, so far, remain the same. My mother backed out of camping for the weekend, but everyone else I guess will be there. She really wanted to me and her to stay together. Well, no one was really up for her plans and I had ideas of my own. I also need a lot of more space that she does. When she goes up north, she entertains a lot of people at once, and I tend to handle spurts of family socializing before I need to go hide. I even need to hide from her after a while. I know Mom wants us to spend time together and we certainly will. I just really needed to have my time to hide in my den and recharge.

I then told my mentor a few days ago that I'm afraid of what will come out when all of us are together. I know I piss and moan about certain things on these pages over and over again, but... I just have too many instances of family gatherings gone horribly awry. Who's going to do or say something stupid? Who's going to get intoxicated? Who's going to utter a widely known secret? I guess the other reason is I come out of these scrapes as the bad guy if I happen to be involved, or I have to silently stand by while I watch something unravel between others and watch them hash it out. I then leave the gatherings holding my breath until I am out of sight and then cry.

I finally said to my mentor that maybe I'm afraid my truths about a lot of things will come out, or other truths by others will. He says maybe that wouldn't be a bad thing because then imagine how free we would be if we didn't have to keep hiding secrets. He asked who the secrets we kept were protecting, and I said it was really only my mother. The stepfather is deceased and all the people involved in various secrets are either dead or in a debilitated state and can't really hurt us.

My siblings figured I ran from the hometown for my life, and they were right. What they don't know is I couldn't stand it there. I hated pretending nothing was wrong and that some terrible things were supposed to be normal. I hated the responsibility that was piled on all of us much too early. I hated living that bareboned existence, and being so vulnerable to everything that happened around us. It was awful watching the people who were supposed to take care of us self-destruct and hurt a lot of people around them.

And now, 30-odd years later, I see that I escaped but I have some survivor's guilt. I have to say to myself over and over again that my siblings and family members have their own lives to live and have free will. I also guess I feel guilty because I haven't done more to help them, but I also sense that doing more would also pull me down. When I left home, I also felt that way but also realized that my actions would be pretty small against the larger family dynamics at play.

Oh my, this is a lot. I keep trying and trying to forgive and let this go. Guess I'm either just crazy, or just need to keep trying or try different things until something sticks. But, I guess all I need to remember is that I wanted to see them again and spend time with them, and that was the biggest thing to remember. After all, Mom and sis Rosepetal were the ones who invited me up. That, and I'm on vacation.

downwind | upstream