Monday, September 22, 2014

Pastures of peace

It's a little dull around my world lately.

Our personal finances are on track.  Once payday hits and I've done the exciting things like pay bills, play with the excel tracker, and put cash in our fun envelopes, it's boring until the next payday.

I'm back on the nothing-but-protien wagon after a summer of excess.  It's going well, already dropped a couple pounds (again, the same pounds over and over) but meat is boring.

I'm still not drinking.  21 days - 2 weeks!  But not doing something is sorta boring - wonderful. good, yes yes - but boring.

I've gotten 43 things listed on Ebay, 1 sold, 2 pending close of auction.  Boring.

Boring is hard to get used to.  And in fact, boredom can be easily confused with PEACE.

I remember feeling like this after I started reading all of these ACoN blogs, and dealing with the STORM of emotions that came up.  It was as if all the angst left inside me from my fucked up childhood and subsequent lifetime of bad decisions got squeezed out all at once and then my life and my world calmed WAY down.  My time living in Maryland was all about learning to live with no drama, learning to live in a life that was finally QUIET.

It's taken me about 4 years, really, all things considered, to learn to live a quiet drama-free life.  I still struggle with peace.  To learn that boundaries, MY BOUNDARIES, are actually very quiet things.  Inert.  Just like a wooden fence, actually - my boundaries of no narcs, no drama are the most calm and solid thing in my world.  The fences, as I think of them, are out in a big green field.  Far from me.  And every day that passes, they move (quietly, no fuss) a little further away from me.

My calm safety zone just gets bigger and wider - and more precious, more beautiful.  And the narcs may be talking about me.  They may be saying mean things about me, smearing my name all over creation.  In fact, I do believe in the case of Jeff's family, that's probably what is happening, since I did the unthinkable and walked away.  But you know what?  They can stand at that fence and jaw and talk all they want.  I can't see them, I can't hear it, and all that expanse of lovely quiet farmland grass is between us.  I love the buffer of it all.  The best part of it is that I forget about my mother, my childhood, all of it for lovely delicious chunks of time.  And those times that I completely don't think about any of them, where they don't enter my mind, get longer and longer.

That's the thing about going 'no contact' I think.  It's so very DECISIVE and causes SO MUCH DRAMA.  It's yelling and screaming, whether in person or via phone messages or even emails and texts.  It's flying monkeys and bullshit and PTSD attacks and guilt.  For a LONG time.  And then, slowly, it starts being QUIET more than it is noisy.  (altho, MY decision to go NC caused more angst inside my own head than it caused with my family.  I have the ignoring type of narc mother, not engulfing, so my journey was a little easier.  Still a lot of mental gymnastics, but not so much outside drama.  But I understand this is the case usually.)

The further you move into it, the better it gets.  Sure you're still beset with the mental agony of living a lifetime among the crap, and furious righteous anger at them and then guilt for leaving and second-guessing - but it's quiet and very still, now, so you can begin the work of peeling them off of you. (You can't possibly start peeling crap off of yourself while you're still sitting in crap.)  The loud screechy banshees are finally quiet and you can fucking THINK for whole thoughts at a time.  You write, you think, you dust your neglected house, you throw stuff away, you clean out your head and your surroundings and you just THINK.  And it's glorious.

And soon your boundaries start moving a little bit away from you.  You aren't fighting them at hand-to-hand combat anymore, it's 5 feet away from you.  Then a block away.  Then a mile.  And so it goes.

It's then - when the boundaries get far away, and the quiet spaces get so lovely and big, that people stop writing their blogs (I think).  Or go a different direction.  Because the narcs aren't taking up all the room anymore, and more wonderful amazing things can get in.  LIFE can just be there.

So many blogs told me what I now know to be true.  The only way to actual peace from the narc drama in your world is absolute unflinching no contact.  I know you don't want to.  You still want the round peg to fit into the square hole.  I know you want to keep trying.  Birthday parties and Christmas (oh my god christmas is coming *shudder*) and all the "reasons" to play at being a family that isn't poisonous.  But it will never fit.  And it IS poisonous.  And I'm telling you, the way others told me - it is so amazingly wonderful when you just walk away.

You CAN choose peace, you know.  You can choose it for yourself.  You get to pick.

The only way to win is to refuse to play.


  1. Go Gladys! Your envelope system and living in a cash world is what I've been doing for years-and it works, so there wasn't much I could add to that post and ditto the second-hand Thrift shopping. I'm not a snob and thrilled with my bargains where ever I can find them. I have a classic Bottega Venetta handbag I bought 22 yrs. ago (I was a bit flush then) I'm needing to replace, but considering the cost/useage ratio, it was well worth it. Good quality classic stuff-not "dowdy"-lasts for years and never goes out of style. I'm big on accessories-love my BIG earrings, scarves etc. and accessories can really change up the look. Congrats on Ebay-I HATE shopping of any kind so your ability to get out there and dig through this stuff and sell it online is waaayyy beyond my patience or capabilities! (When I have some extra $$ imma check out your site for sure-right now, I've got a lot of extra expenses going on, but I'll get there!)
    You're doing very well with the booze. It's so hard when you really do have to change your whole lifestyle, and ya do: How and with what do you fill all that time you use to spend around alcohol related activities? That's really challenging. But each day that goes by is one more day you're getting through the PAWS (Post-Acute Withdrawal Syndrome) symptoms and is a victory: Please don't sell yourself short. (Mulder is the Pro here-she'll chime in w/some good ideas, no doubt!)
    "You can't possibly start peeling crap off yourself while you're still sitting in crap."<A-F'N-MEN. You *think* you have "perspective" but you don't-it's impossible to be able to begin to see the whole picture when there's drama and chaos on the daily-or close to it. IMO, NC combined with not drinking? It must feel like (crickets) in your world right now. When you're used to living with all the crazy, it feels NORMAL. Peace and quiet are initially disconcerting-it felt to me like something was somehow wrong when I wasn't constantly feeling anxious etc.
    I've noticed recurrent Themes/Patterns on those "Estranged Parents" sites, and a recurrent theme is something to the effect the EP "never saw it coming!" And I actually *believe* them on that assertion. What they don't realize is what a stunning indictment that statement actually is of their degree of SELF-ABSORPTION. Your AC has struggled with the relationship for YEARS-and you never NOTICED?? Like we just woke up one day and said, "Yeah, well it's Tues. Think I'll terminate the relationship with my CB Parent(s)" (yawn, roll over and catch a few more zzz's.) The reality is, we've struggled with them for DECADES: NC is the LAST resort, not the first option. Then they apportion "blame"-usually on the spouse first, followed by quickly or concurrently stating you have "Mental Health Problems!"<That says a whole lot about how much respect they have for YOU, their AC. As if you couldn't *possibly* over decades of interacting with them have reached your own conclusions/end of your rope. THEN! It's time to "disinherit" you-you ULB! BUT! They're not at all about Retribution!-while behaviorally demonstrating: The Slime and Malign Campaign, great public weeping and gnashing of teeth, taking on the mantle of "VICTIM!" in a frantic attempt to not be correctly labeled as the abusive/neglectful "Parent" they, in fact, WERE, the Recruitment Campaign and the final "How DARE YOU!" so they "disinherit" you-none of which you would have seen anyway contrary to what they want you to believe. (They have a price; therefore, so do you.) Because it's not at all about Retribution, they really *do* lurve you, they desperately want to "Reconcile" and they never had a clue.
    Now they do. More importantly, SO DO YOU.
    NC: The Gift That Really Does Keep On Giving: Peace, Perspective, a Life instead of a Life Sentence.

    1. Again, you nailed it. Thank you for the good thoughts. You left such a great comment at Q's site - can I quote it on another post?

      Thanks again TW.

    2. Oh sure! Go for it-spread it far and wide!!! ;)

  2. If you were to ask my mother she would tell you it was too late to quit drinking. That you must have permanent brain damage by now. Hence you saying 21 days is 2 weeks.

    1. HAHAHA yeah, me and math broke up back in high school and we don't talk. I meant 3 WEEKS yeesh...

    2. I didn't know if you really made a clerical error or if it was your famous self effacing humor.

  3. Boring is good. Boring doesn't throw a snit at the dinner table.

  4. Ah, Gladys you stole my next posting. How did you know?

    I want boring, that is me. Peace is just amazing.

  5. I can't repeat enough, to everyone - LET THE BIRTHDAY PARTIES GO. They are nothing but grief. Nobody cares as much about your kids as you and your spouse, it's a fact you need to face. And why make such a big deal about it anyway?

    Celebrate at home, with your kid and you and spouse/partner, and any siblings. Have a home-made cake and a couple presents and BE DONE. Why all the family angst? WHY a party every year which is 1: just another way for you to invite the narcs into your kid's world (and WTF they are poison! Why are you doing that to your kids?) and 2: just another way for the narcs to FUCK WITH YOU. Birthdays are PERSONAL to someone other than the narc, and they will hate that and create havoc and angst and drama around them.

    GUARD YOUR BABIES. Guard yourselves. Stop with all the inviting narcs into your world!

    The answer to all your questions? NO. No they don't give a fuck. No they don't want your kid to have a nice party. No they don't want to give up the spotlight for one fucking day. No they won't ever change, no they won't play nice, no they won't buy the right gift/show up on time/help with food/do anything remotely loving or useful.

    NO the answer is no. Stop setting your kids up. Because YOUR KIDS KNOW. Even the 2, 3, 4-year olds KNOW that the narcs are evil and scary. I did it to MY kid, I brought him to the narcs and they fed on him. Up until my exit a year or so ago, they fed on him.

    Believe what everyone ahead of you tells you. STOP FEEDING YOUR CHILDREN TO THE PREDATORS. You are killing their little souls AND teaching them to take it, to be prey.

    Celebrate birthdays, holidays, thanksgiving, all of it with your own little family - the one you created from your DNA, or friends who have become family. Quit gifting your fear and stress and frustration to the evil beings that feed on those emotions. You need to choose peace.

    1. WOW! ^You nailed it here, Gladys.
      Over and over again, I've read/discussed with AC's their GREATEST REGRET: Exposing their own kids to their CB "Parents." Anna V has a fantastic (and formidable) Post on her Blog regarding "Grandparents"-you can find it in her list of topics. The last time I looked there were somewhere around *100* RESPONSES from AC's on this Post: Words of hard-earned heart ache, heart break and EXPERIENCE.

      I personally know 2 AC's who had their children PHYSICALLY ABDUCTED by the "grandparent(s)." Neither are uneducated, impoverished etc. Both of these families are upper middle class to affluent, very well educated (as if it matters, but a little demographic background helps, IMO) and in both cases were UNABLE to even locate their children with the assistance of Law Enforcement, including Private Investigators. Never, EVER in a million YEARS did they expect or were they given any kind of indication the "gpts" were "THIS BAD."
      At the very least, exposure to your CB Parents is absolutely hazardous to your kids. I don't care if you SIT ON/monitor your kids in the "gpts" presence: The reality is, you can not control *what* is gonna come out of their mouths-and it WILL be hurtful. Again, we don't know what we don't know and neither family had identified the "gpts" as CBs although they knew they were very difficult, highly manipulative, their presence very disruptive etc. At the very least they will steal your children's hearts-and break them, play favorites, disrupt (as you mentioned) every one of your child's Special Events/Milestones and reap havoc and mayhem within your own family.
      We were unable to protect ourselves from our CB "parent(s)" growing up *OR* as adults. Their nasty comments, their constant ploys for attention/Supply etc. took our valuable time and energy from our own kids/families. The Legacy AC's live with, that leaves the longest demands and the greatest damage is the psychological/emotional abuse we endured. The guilt the AC's feel over having exposed their children to their CB "Parent(s)" is over-whelming and does not diminish over time.
      They do *not* change as they age nor when they become "gpts." Fostering a "relationship" with your CB "parent(s)" IMO is a reflection of wishful thinking on the AC's part as well as an indication of the degree of refusal to accept the Reality of what the AC KNOWS to be true.
      I can not support this-just can't. Our primary responsibility as Parents is to PROTECT OUR KIDS-especially from a KNOWN THREAT. And YES, they are ALL "That BAD:" Consider what they did to YOU. How "bad" does it have to get before you surrender your illusions, *know what you know* and act on it?
      They predated on you and they'll predate on your vulnerable, precious children. I become very upset with AC's who continue the Legacy, knowing what they do know, what they endured themselves, and as a result IMO it is *well within their ability and RESPONSIBILITY* to protect their children from their CB "parents." Once you have children, it's no longer about what YOU as the "parent" want, the picture you wish to create in your mind, the illusions you refuse to relinquish: Its about what your children NEED.
      Protection is the most primal need of any living being: Even wild animals KNOW and actively engage in the protection of their off-spring-and if necessary, at the cost of their own lives.
      (Yes, I know this comment is NOT "PC:" Neither is the topic.)

  6. You really nailed it this time, Gladys!

    Huge adjustment to the drama-free/booze free life b/c for me those two addictions were tied together with a nice barbed wire bow. To break free is to fundamentally change "who we are".

    I also consider myself lucky that my parents basically did not give one single fuck when I walked away b/c they loved themselves far more than they ever "loved" me. Besides they've always had other doormats ready to take my place. I am occasionally stalked by my NGC brother but the poor guy's brain is so fried by booze and weed, he's a non-issue.

    The last trap I allowed myself to walk into was the old man's 90th birthday and, in retrospect, I realize their was no "call back" I let my own guilty thoughts trip me up.

    Yes, greatest regret, letting the SOBs have access to my beautiful daughter. In the end, she was WAY smarter than her mother. The old man pulled a raving lunatic number on her ONCE and she walked away.

    I don't call it boredom, I call it serenity. Without the emotional and even physical drain of constant drama, in the last two and a half years, I have accomplished things I never dreamed I was capable of doing.

    AA's Promises have a part that applies exactly to the lives of ACoNs who make their escape:
    "We are going to know a new freedom and a new happiness. We will not regret the past nor wish to shut the door on it. We will comprehend the word serenity and we will know peace. No matter how far down the scale we have gone, we will see how our experience can benefit others. That feeling of uselessness and selfpity will disappear...Our whole attitude and outlook upon life will change. Fear of people and of economic insecurity will leave us. We will intuitively know how to handle situations which used to baffle us."

  7. Congrats on the boredom (peace), it's a very good sign!

    I'm celebrating 3 years of no contact with the evil witchmom and I couldn't be happier.

    Early on, people gave me crap about keeping my distance from her. My response...."just because she is not incarcerated, doesn't mean she hasn't done terrible things". The jails are full of her kind, and they are all someone's mother, father, brother, sister, etc... It's crazy to expect us to subject ourselves and our children to depraved people even if they are 'family'.

    Peace, you'll get used to it and become very fond of it! I know I have.

  8. Gawd, Gladys. This is a great post. I'm PTSDing over the fact that I'll have to see my mother if I go to a nephew's baptism. I went through this same shit when my niece was baptized. Gaw. I just want peace.