The Path of Least Resistance

Oh folks.

Today is so long. Not just in duration (I mean, technically it’s the same amount of hours as any other day, but I work a lot on Mondays between law firm and library), but psychologically for me, today is so long. I feel like I’m doing a pretty decent job of being normal at work. I’m happy to be here honestly, but I’d rather be home at the same time-does that make sense? There are two sides of me right now. The side that wants to cry in bed all day and the side that knows that won’t be at all helpful to me, and recognizes that work is better.

Last night was spent crying. Really. Crying. Most of the evening. I’d stop and calm down and then I’d think about something having to do with the blow-up and I’d cry again. Between feeling like my own mother hates me and then thinking about how upset she’s going to be when I call off Sunday dinners, and then thinking about some of the things she said, I just couldn’t keep it together for very long.

Something my mom said to me last night (actually, screamed at me) that I didn’t mention was that her and my step-dad have just been so happy about Charlie coming and why do we (as in my sister and I, but my sister wasn’t in the room so really, I was the one getting screamed at) have to take that away from her?

I don’t know mom, I guess because I’m just a heartless bitch.

I didn’t say that. Actually at that point I was shaking so bad that I had to sit down, and I clutched my belly and sobbed. And Chief tried to get me to leave for the 1000th time and started making me take deep breaths.

At any rate, I spent the night reliving it. Thinking about what I should have done, how I should have left immediately and not come back, things I wish I had said. When Chief’s alarm went off at 5:30 I couldn’t go back to sleep, so I got up and got ready for the law firm. I probably got about 4.5 hours of sleep last night.

The good thing about getting to the firm so early this morning was that it meant I could get the stuff I needed to get done in my actual office done very early and then head up to the third floor litigation library before my mom came into work. It’s a chicken move, but I couldn’t deal with her this morning. I just couldn’t. I didn’t want to start crying at work and I had so much to get done, AND I had a meeting with a book rep at 10:00. So I kept myself occupied until he showed up and then met with him until it was time for me to leave. I spoke to her on the way out and we were cordial at best. She asked me how I was feeling and I said “tired” and she told me she liked my top. Then on the way out the door she told me she loved me.

And I know she does. I don’t doubt that. But damn it, how can someone who loves someone hurt them so damn much?

While I was filing texts this morning I listened to my Charlie songs playlist. Most of them are happy but some of them are slower and maybe sad. I think they can make some of the prettiest lullabies. One of the songs on their is Again Today/Hiding My Heart by Brandi Carlile. I downloaded it for the Hiding My Heart part-for some reason she recorded two tracks on one track. I like Again Today well enough, but I always think of it as the song I have to listen to to get to Hiding My Heart.

Today it came on and I had such a hard time holding it together. It starts like this:

Broken sticks and broken stones
Will turn to dust just like our bones
It’s words that hurt the most now isn’t it?

Yes they do hurt. So much. Especially when you can’t get them out of your head.

And the chorus goes like this:

Who’s gonna break my fall
When the spinning starts?
The colors bleed together and fade
Was it ever there at all?
Or have I lost my way?
The path of least resistance
Is catching up with me again today

I do feel like I’ve lost my way. I truly do. I’m so glad that I have Chief. And Chief is so mad and upset about this. He feels like K set this whole thing up, and I’m beginning to feel that way too. That just seems like such a crazy thing to do, but looking at the way it all went down it makes sense. I feel like I should have cut my sister off a long time ago, and if my parents weren’t also in the equation I would have, but I’ve always stuck around for them. Since the divorce my family is tenuous at best. When I was little my sister could do no wrong in my mothers eyes, and my dad was my hero when I needed one, but he couldn’t fight mom on these things. Then after the divorce my sister cut my mom off and didn’t speak to her for months, and my mom needed me, and I got to need her back. My dad and my sister grew very close as a result because my sister was on “his side.”

While I never took sides and maintain that position, I didn’t spend as much time with my dad because my sister was always there and I didn’t want to be around her anymore than I had to. She actually makes me have physical symptoms when she walks into a room. My heart beats faster, I tense up, my stomach is unsettled. I don’t even look her in the eye. Chief says it’s like being around a wounded animal that’s just waiting for an attack.

I have nightmares about her. In them she just screams at me. And I scream back, but I can never remember what I say when I wake up-just what she says. Because they’re some of the things she screamed at me in real life.

Two that happened when I was 18 and she was 22-23 were:

“I wish you had died in mom’s uterus”


“No one will ever love you because you’re just a fat miserable whore”

And by the way, my mother was present for that one. She heard her say those things. She did nothing. I left the house crying.

But my parents want me to just get over it and move past it. How? How is that possible when she has literally conditioned me into being her enemy? Into being afraid of her?

My whole point is this-K has them both. I feel like I have no parents to go to about this. I have no sister. My dad is doing the best he can, I know that, but he also keeps saying “Let’s just let it ease over-you don’t need to get upset while you’re pregnant.” Um, too late.  I’m about to have a baby and my family is a disaster. My parents want me to just let it fizzle off and into the background, like everything else. But the problem is that that’s what I’ve done my entire life, as instructed. That’s the path of least resistance. And like the song says, it’s catching up with me again today.

Who’s gonna break my fall? The ground, apparently.


13 thoughts on “The Path of Least Resistance

  1. My heart hurts for you as I read. Honestly, it sounds like you need a few weeks off from the family stuff. I’ve been spending a lot of time lately thinking about boundaries with my family and implementing new boundaries to help protect my heart from constant hurt. It sounds like you are on the same path as I am (clearly different circumstances, but similar enough). Thinking of you and hoping you can take the time and space you clearly need.

  2. Oh I just want to give you a hug. I’m so sorry your parents and sister aren’t being the family you need and deserve right now. You deserve to be treated with love and respect and loved for who you are, not in relation to your sister, and not expected to always take abuse from her. It sounds like maybe some time out from all of them, or at least some firm boundaries might be helpful for you. Something like, no more attending events if K is there until she apologizes and shows that she can treat you like an adult who is worthy of respect, and even then, I think you’d be totally justified in not having a relationship with her at all. And if either of your parents bring up K, or you and K’s relationship, just say that it’s between you and K, they don’t need to be the go-betweens.

  3. K sounds like she has a personality disorder. It’s probably a good thing she had her tubes tied. It sounds like she has your parents exactly where she wants them. I would avoid her at all costs and I’m sorry she’s trying to ruin your pregnancy (and I think she did it on purposed because she wants to upset you). And ugh I’m sorry your sister is such a rotten person.

  4. I have to agree with everyone above…I just want to come down and give you a big hug! I am so glad that Chief is such a wonderful support system for you. You need to take care of You and Charlie right now. I would stay away from her at least for the time being and I would tell your parents you do NOT want to talk about her. If they can’t respect that, you may need to take time away from them also. Sending you lots of love and prayers!

  5. Hugs to you, dear. Your sister is an abusive and manipulative person. Reading about the way she treats you and has treated you during the course of your life makes my blood boil. It’s also upsetting that your parents haven’t checked her behavior. You owe NO ONE an apology. I can’t imagine how heart-breaking it is for you at the most special time in your life to be dealing with all of this. I’m glad you are taking steps to further protect yourself and your dear little daughter from further trauma. You will do what’s best for your family (you, Chief and Charlie) and while it will be hard because you are a kind person who takes all sides into consideration and just wants everyone to treat each other with respect, you will find a way to rise above your sister’s ill-intentions. I will be thinking of you and sending you strength as you deal with all of this.

  6. Such a stressful situation for you. It sounds like she has done some real damage. Have you thought about seeing psych to talk all this through and about how to reconcile it with your world / interacting with the family etc? I know it can be hard to find a good one but I have found it is worth the effort. Really worth the effort. Just a thought. Hope you can find the answers you need whatever path you choose.

  7. “Words hurt so much especially since when you can’t get them out of your head”. This. Exactly this is how I felt a few weeks back. I’m so sorry you are now feeling this way, too. I wish I had some magic words to say to take the pain away, or help you sleep better, or to find a comfortable spot within your family. People have told me time will help me heal… I hope they are right and I hope that helps you, too. But I do feel that in order to move on from problems… They have to be dealt with instead of left to fizzle out. I’m not ready to speak to my own family after the way they treated me and I’m not sure when I will be… But if we are ever going to have a relationship again we will need to talk things out. And quote honestly I feel they should come to me… As I feel K should come to you…. The problem is… Both our family members seem to be the type of people who only see things from their perspective and thus will not apologize for their behavior unless we initiate a conversation… And maybe not even then. I am sending you love and hugs and hope for calmer days ahead.

  8. So, I’ve been following this saga, and my heart is breaking for you. While I’m fortunate enough to have a great family, Hubby is not. His brother is a destructive sociopath- who actually sounds a lot like your sister. Years ago, before I even met Hubby, he broke off all contact with his brother. His mom was devastated for awhile (parents are divorced and dad totally understood why Hubby needed to do this), but eventually his mom got over it. It was the best thing for Hubby. I’ve never met his brother and hope I never will. His mom has tried inviting Hubby to places where his brother will be, but as soon as he spots his brother, he walks right back out.
    The point of this is, it is possible to cut out a toxic family member. It sounds like it is the best thing for YOUR family (Chief, Charlie, and YOU). They are the ones who will keep you from falling.

  9. I’m so sorry you have to deal with this right now. Sending lots of hugs. I cut my own sister out of my life about 5 years ago, and I have no regrets. She was only 18 at the time, but I was sick of her lies and secrets. Eventually, I sent her an email (so classy) and told her that when she’s ready to be open & honest with me, the door is open, but that until that time, I need to look out for myself. We’ve had absolutely zero communication since then. It’s difficult and complicated in a way, but it’s also really simplified my life. There’s so much less drama.

  10. Ugh I’m so so sorry. My sister and mom aren’t quite that bad, but I do feel your pain. I’ve had to cut ties with them for short bouts of time (being Chinese, I can’t completely cut them off) and that has helped. Do what you need to and grieve as you need to. But don’t let yourself get caught up in feeling guilty, ok? Big hugs!

  11. None of this sounds like it is very good for you during your pregnancy. Your sister sounds like an attention whore and possibly the only reason she is discussing having children is because she is seeing and hearing about your pregnancy and wants the attention redirected to her. I don’t believe you have mentioned much about her partner and how they felt during this outburst. Is it possible to get some counselling for you and maybe your family. Remember you will be Charlie’s mom soon and you will be making the decisions for her well being and I’m pretty sure you won’t want to have toxic people around her. A baby is supposed to be a blessing and its a shame you are surrounded by such selfish family members.

  12. So sorry about all this drama, it’s the last thing you need. Your sister is the one with the problem. It’s too bad she feels like she always needs to be the center of attention. Glad Chief is so understanding and supportive.

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