I have been searching for this bobcat to photograph him for 2 years at the wetlands area we go to. I finally got my broken scooter fixed which can handle packed gravel unlike my wheelchair so we went out and just as we were leaving and the sun was setting my husband saw him! From my scooter I couldn’t get a photo so I flopped down in the dirt and took this I was so excited I had to share it!!! TWO YEARS!!!!!
Everyone has their own issues but COME ON!!!!! Excuses seem so cowardly and pathetic to me these days. Why? Because I have fought through pain and illness and abuse and PTSD and can still text someone, call someone, check on someone. I can still make an effort to make a person matter even with everything I have going on. So I hate it when I hear, “Well maybe they have a lot going on.” Really? I mean there is a sliding scale. Some days I have hardly anything “going on” and it is too much. I understand that we all have our own issues but they should not be used as excuses to stop caring about other human beings. Because this human being feels disposable. And I am not just conjuring that feeling up out of space! I am not creating that drama or overreacting to an emotion. I am very much, matter of fact, disposable. And I wish that statement were not true.
It took me a long time to let it sink in, 10 years about, that my inability to meet my friends was a clear indicator that our friendship only worked because I made it work.
Patti was my friend since I was 18. After not being able to drive I have seen her probably 3 times. In ELEVEN years! She lives about 40 minutes from me and has come to my town often for school and errands. So you could say well she must have issues she is working out. I am sure she does. But that didn’t stop that facebook post of her being on the field for her kids prom or homecoming or whatever it was. If you can run errands, if you can take your kids to all their activities, then their IS time and you ARE capable you just don’t CHOOSE to be capable with me. Disposable.
Then there is Tracy. 21 years of friendship. And yep you could argue that she has issues. But those issues didn’t keep her from that baby shower or that work party or that concert. But it sure as hell kept her from coming to see me. Disposable.
Hmm we have Donna who I was friends with for about 8 years. She lives right down the road but since I did not testify against her husband in her divorce…disposable.
Dee…walked every single day with her and her dogs but she divorced her husband and moved away and not a word since. Disposable.
Or maybe just convenient at the time and then later so easy to walk away from.
Maybe these women are so miserable with their husbands or jobs or lives that their excuses are valid. Maybe my health and my issues are just too much for them. Again…disposable.
Then we have Holly who I actually forgave for standing by her husband after he assaulted me. I opened that door right back up in my forgiveness. I created closure. But that was last week. For 10 years I was 100% disposable. Or maybe I was just a memory she didn’t want to remember.
Just like my family. They don’t want to KNOW that I am living in pain, suffering, that bad things have happened to me and I am struggling. They live in denial. Holly lived in denial. Everyone easily turns their backs on the truth of abuse and illness by living in their own excuses.
I once found their excuses plausible . I had empathy for their own issues as I listened to them day in and day out. Because they ALL have ISSUES. The only difference is I was the only one LISTENING to their issues and I was getting nothing. Absolutely nothing. Because…disposable.
Erika, well she dumped on me for years. Everyone does. They all dump their troubles and their sorrows and I listen. I am there. Hours upon hours of my listening. Because I truly cared. But Erika didn’t like my emotions or my illness or my truth. I am not allowed emotions. I am expected by all of these “friends” and always have been to be seen and not heard. You want to screw 20 year olds but I can’t express the anger I feel towards those who violated me. Yeah. That makes sense. Slowly but surely I have recognized how these friendships work. Those with no conscience don’t work well with someone like me who lives by hers.
So when I said NO. DONE. STOP BEING A SHIT FRIEND. STOP BEING A SHIT FAMILY. Actually listen to me and be there for me. No one fought for me. Not one of these people made me feel I mattered. I think they were just waiting for the disposable part. I was so easy to walk away from. But I asked for nothing. I was the one who drove to meet them, to pick their kids up, to take care of their animals. I asked nothing of anyone EVER.
Then I got sick. And I STILL didn’t ask anything. Just an occasional visit, effort, something that made me feel like this was not one sided. And I got NOTHING.
But as chronically ill people do, I hung on. I didn’t want to lose the only friends I had. I held on to them and suffered through their lives without them even once offering to help me with mine. They all knew that I could not drive, I could not do the simplest of things. They were pathetic friends that I held onto for fear of having nothing. I even told Tracy that being her friend made me feel more lonely than having no friend at all. The same for Patti. Because knowing that I was not worth a phone call or a visit or an effort, a trip to sit with me in the hospital in the 32 times I was there, just ate away at me.
My mother was the only one that ever came when I called. Yet she was the FIRST to walk away given the opportunity in the truth of the abuse I endured.
What is so ironic is that most of them have the power to change their situations. They can drive for therapy. They can get divorced. They have jobs, money, lives. But choose to do nothing. I have no options. No opportunities. But I still choose to live in the truth while they live in denial and dispose dispose dispose of anything that does not fit into their denial of life.
I wish I could live in denial. I really do. I wish I could deny it all. The abuse, the PTSD, the muscle disease, the chemical sensitivities, all of it. But my mind and body won’t let me. I don’t have that luxury or curse really. I don’t get a choice. But I really never have. I have ALWAYS been disposable. To the men who have used me. The the family that abandoned me. To the friends who found me inconvenient.
What is one to do with this?
I am aware that someone can point out that we are all disposable.
I am also aware that we shouldn’t be.
I worked in nursing homes for 8 years and I know what disposable looks like. I was there for them. I was there for everyone who had no true validation for their suffering. I made others feel like they mattered. Until, I could not bear the feeling they each gave me that proved to be true. I am easily disposable.
It is not a reflection on me.
It is a reflection on the heartlessness, the selfishness of others. They don’t deserve excuses. God, I am so tired of hearing others give people excuses for being awful human beings. Because I don’t use excuses. I don’t say, “Sorry I cannot listen to your woes as I have a muscle disease and haven’t slept in 11 years.” I don’t say, “ I had a panic attack earlier so I cannot listen to the same story about your husband again.” I don’t use my disabilities, issues, suffering, as an excuse to be a bad human being and a terrible friend. They don’t get to either.
I may be disposable but at least I have integrity. I may not matter to one human being, friend, or family, but I know in my heart that I have lived my life with honor and honesty and empathy.
I’m not sure how they live with themselves. Yes I do. Denial. What a waste of their humanity and time on this earth. If I can give closure to a dying woman whose husband literally ruined my life, I am pretty sure I am worth an occasional phone call.
I’ve learned people are not like me.
I may be disposable but I can no longer sit back and keep people in my life that treat me that way.
Some have walked away. Some I have walked away from. In the end, I can live with my choices. I often wonder how they live with theirs.
My daughter took a few pictures of me bird watching. I was mesmerized because I was watching a family of woodpeckers. Then a family of cardinals. Then a Kite (bird) few over and I got a picture of her. She was incredible. Then I saw the morning glory int he yard had made a little arch. So I took a picture of that. I love the heart shaped leaves. I thought what a perfect place for a child’s imagination of all the things that could live under that heart shaped arch. I could write a children’s book on that alone.
At dusk the sunset and the lightening display was far more beautiful than the fireworks but I threw in one picture of the fireworks in the mix of my pictures anyway. I went to meet someone to watch the fireworks and she did not show. So I sat there, in the road, in my wheelchair, after getting ready, alone. As I sat there, by myself, I watched the house where I watch the fireworks who never actually invites me to their party. That is fine. But they have a TON of people and cars lining the road. I sit in the opening of the trees to watch their fireworks. Every year. All of them can see me sitting there. Usually another neighbor will meet me. Today I was alone there. 12 years I have sat in that road. No one ever says a word. I find it humorous. Wondering what they think of the girl in the wheelchair in the road.
Then the owl came. She screeched over and over and over again. I decided to go home and hope she would come along. She did. She flew into the tree next to my house and screeched for an hour. I tried to tell her it was just stupid fireworks and she’d be ok. Have you ever tried to comfort an owl?! I’m sure everyone else was comforting their dogs and their partners or selves with PTSD. But I talked to the owl for an hour. I took pictures of the lightening and the sky and I think things turned out just they way they were meant to.