So. That's what it is. That's what it's been this whole time. I mean, this WHOLE freaking TIME! Amazing. Ten years, eleven years (who the hell knows for sure) of WASTING energy, time. Tears. Words. Apologies. As somber as it is, it is also gleefully uplifting. You know. A relief. TEN years (or more, maybe) of looping and spinning and grasping at internal battles for nothing! Well, okay not nothing. But something, which has finally, ultimately, and lastly added up to so many years of spinning my wheels, hashing out, and rehashing approximately three-trillion degrees and forms of acceptance for about as many conflicts, situations, and the like, for which I would ultimately try to control the outcome: a realization. Something has finally clicked and made me understand just about every single aspect of my crazy, fading-psychobitch ways: control.
Aye yay yay. What the hell am I talking about, the proverbial 'you' asks.
'Tis the muted enlightening of a soul who has just realized how she has tried to control outcomes and output of the situations and people around her for SOOOO many years by the way I have delivered my own dialogue, assumed a savior-ette, super-hero type role, and all--and I mean ALL!!!--the brain-crap that can be associated with all of the hair-brained, vendetta-type, "passionate" responses I've ever, EVER had and made. I've just done that for soooo long and in so many ways that it just became the norm of relating to people and, more importantly, dealing with situations, dealing with life.
I mean, everyone wants and needs some control in their life, but sheesh! I never realized the magnitude with which I do this. It really is so sad. Thanks be to GOD it can be overcome, such is the blessing, just not without some reflective regret. What brought this new idea about was the impending change to come with Kyle not getting the high school band job (who woulda thunk--it all seems a little too reality-novel for me, but...)...but all in how I dealt with the news, how I reacted, how I wanted to act, and the miserable unfolding of what was, essentially, the fact (and realization) that I could not control this and no amount of avenging was going to change the outcome, nor would it leave anything but severely damaging consequences behind in some proposed aftermath.
It wasn't just entirely all there, though. The realization, that is. I had some time in between the news of Kyle's employment situation and the unfolding of conversations in a day (yesterday) to stew like a mad cow over the entire blow of it all. Which I did. I let the anger boil in me like a hot blister in my chest and rise into my throat yesterday morning, with a surging I knew would only be quelled by giving the wrong-doers a piece of my mind. My temples throbbed, I felt almost sick with the feeling that was rising in my chest and I've never experienced that kind of exhaustive emotion since the time I was a child and was throwing a wild fit in the hallway (for being sent to bed early since muttering some nasty thing under my breath at my mother.) I've never been so mad. In all my life. I knew I had to write them (the administrators) a letter and that I needed to compose it like I would send it. I had to be confident that what I wrote could be something I would send and I needed to believe I was somehow, in some way or another, going to send it.
So then I focused all my energy in trying to find the words I couldn't spit out and tell them just everything I wanted to say and everything I wanted them to hear. After taking a mere hour to accomplish just that (and believe me, that's a pretty good deal!), I let Kyle read it, who was home for lunch by then. Expecting a response and knowing he knew I demanded one, we ended up launching into an entire noon-hour debate about the way I deal with things, the operative word being successfully launched into the air being "control."
Being that he had adapted to my ways for so long, either by being brow-beaten or by physical ailments of the past, there was a serious lack of boundaries set on his part and a serious lack of respecting ones on my part. But there was also a serious amount of bravery on Kyle's part to use such a word with me, in full context, full light of the day, in a discussion that had been launched originally with respect to his job; and a serious amount of relief in seeing my reception of the word. He explained right out what I had been failing to hear for SOOO many years about why to let things go, why to understand that inevitable situations are beyond our control, and that not being able to control them does not equal failure (I realized this in not-so-many words.)
This being such a heavy realization at such a bright hour shook my foundation a bit. It seems easy to say or think, but to know it is completely another thing. I never wanted to be like that. And with Kyle's tender touch, he pointed out in a way that made new sense all of the ways that my life and our life together had spiraled so amazingly out of control in the beginning. From one thing to another--living with R, searching for money (and having none!), dating Kyle while R was still in the house, R moving out, apartment flooding, the accident, moving in with other people, moving to another country, in with the inlaws, Kyle getting sick, moving again, and more--all overlapping in traumatic series of cowpies that transpired (plus mothering two little ones) within a year's time and then, in turn, morphed into our lives on this side of the border (getting the job here, moving again, Kyle getting sick again, having two young babies, the aunt, the cancer, the joints, the whole peril of the looming unknown, job upheaval, marriage upheaval...)
However, this being a particularly astonishing thing all on its own--the entire realization of my control (or attempts to control)--it wouldn't be the last time I'd hear about it. After lunch, I had coffee with K who had observed the same things Kyle did about my behavior in my attempts to militantly assume justice in cases where someone had been done wrong; and her observation touched something raw.
But then, if that wasn't enough, I had a bit of time to think about it and hopefully clear my head before work, but during my shift, my boss called me into talk about some aspects of my job and noted some of the way I deal with customers and more or less suggested I not take it so personal. I realized (although not too suddenly) that most of the time (in regards to customers, particularly rude ones) that I can brush it off, but sometimes there is a switch in me where that puff of indignation rises and I do, indeed.... *sigh... take it personally. On a side note, I guess I do this because I know that I would never go into a restaurant--or anywhere, for that matter--and treat an employee poorly; and so it makes me mad, BUT... the anger that builds up so intensely is due to this... A-HA!... lack of superpower to change that person's mind or behavior.
I can see how it ALL just finally works together to explain why I was the way I was for so long. Perhaps the need to control something in what used to be my insane life seeded its way down. Perhaps there is heritage influence or familial pressure (as in, of old) that had its own life blood in my decisions to let every person in the world know exactly how I feel. Maybe a ton of things. But I can look back on every single time in my life that contained some form of contention, ill-formed resolution (or trying to force resolution), or any kind of temperamental flare-up and realize that it is a one-size-fits-all kind of thing. It is a piece of knowledge that I can look back with and match the puzzle pieces to. Every single instance of those situations where I got mad or felt out of control is like a part of the puzzle that each match up with this one piece of knowledge and it works like an application. I've only had twenty-four hours to start a new life with one of accepting what I cannot control, but I can tell you that I'm already relieved. Beyond measure.
(Epilogue: The letter was deleted.)