I can’t believe I’ve been married over a fortnight. It’s all a little weird. Aside from feeling more comfortable in my relationship, I didn’t think anything would really change. And yet, here I sit feeling like a very different me than I expected. Some of that, no doubt, comes from the fact that I spent so much time thinking about and planning this wedding that I feel a little empty now. I’m not sure what to do with myself, other than to mother our new guinea pigs Gus Gus and Jaq… which means they’re kind of possibly spoiled piggies.
The wedding went so much better than I could’ve ever expected. There was no drama. Things did actually stay pretty close to our schedule. I got to spend time with each of the important people in my life, and those people all got to meet each other. I danced most of the night, but what can you expect when they send a DJ who could be your musical twin and teaches you how to do the dances? I got to dance with my sisters, even the ones who aren’t related to me at all, and with the awesome men in my life. I also got to spend some time with some of the cool spoonies I know, for which I’ll always be grateful.
One of my favorite parts was being able to dance with my dad, even for a short time. For most girls, that’s a no-brainer. Personally, I wasn’t sure that would ever happen. You see, up until the beginning of August I had never gotten to meet my dad, and I had only talked to him a few times. I feel like I share an awful lot with you guys, but I haven’t been able to share everything lately. One of the big things I learned this year was that there was a reason my little family seemed askew, and it’s definitely been a part of the lack of new posts here. I really don’t want to go into too much detail, because it’s hard and I’m still recognizing a lot of it, but I learned that abuse comes in many forms. Dysfunction and abuse are different. Unfortunately, most abusers do not change and we have to cut off contact to live our lives safely and happily. My dad didn’t even know I existed until I was five, until this disease had hit and brought with it too many bills to handle. A custody battle ensued. They were told I was fine and happy where I was, while I was told he only wanted custody so he didn’t have to pay child support. I was told growing up that the lack of insurance was why I couldn’t try new things or get hurt, when dad had to keep insurance on me the whole time. I didn’t see a doctor or dentist from the time I was maybe eight until I was a senior in college, due to that supposed lack of insurance, and now have spent a very large amount of time and money to try to fix those things… which I’m still working on. My dad gave us money so I could get a hot tub to do water therapy daily. The money was spent elsewhere, and that was always a dangling promise *if* I did well enough or acted nicely enough. I’ve already talked a little about the abuse I’ve gone through due to people outside of the family too, and I’ve realized a little more about who knew things about that and didn’t do anything. I could go on, but I won’t, mostly because it’s hard. I don’t want to be a bitter person or focus on the past, as much as it seems it would be good to get a lot of it out.
I won’t lie – I’m having a hard time dealing with everything. Dealing with coming to terms with how I grew up is being very difficult, and part of me is so very angry. I feel like I’m having to discover who I really am now too, and that’s not an easy thing to do when you’re in the middle of living your life! It’s a lot to take in a very short amount of time, especially when I’m physically feeling okay. I wish my physical pain matched my emotional turmoil. It usually does, and the fact that it really isn’t is both great and unsettling since I’m so used to it.
I think one of the most comforting things to know is that I am not alone in anything I do now like I felt I was growing up. I’m so grateful to have a sister I’ve known since she was born, and now to add a brother and another sister onto that is amazing. I have a dad and a stepmom who are more amazing than I could’ve hoped for. I don’t know that I could be their kid more than I am if they had raised me. I have T’s family, who are so caring and so helpful. I have some of the best friends in the world, including other spoonies and the person who helped me to really open up my eyes to the abuse I’ve gone through and has really and truly helped me get through all this without going bonkers. And, of course, I have T too.
All these great people make up my FOC, or Family of Choice. I couldn’t be happier to have them as a part of my life going forward.