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Your Life, Your Choice

Hello Beautiful People,

My Life, My Choice. Your Life, Your Choice.

Like many of you, I had a pretty rough childhood. There are three of us, but I will only speak of my experience. For me, my dad seemed to be a very unhappy, miserable man. He was either grumbling about something or screaming at one of us, usually me. I was either getting a spanking or under the threat of getting one by him yanking his leather belt out of his pants and hanging it over his shoulder. I'm not sure there was a day that went by where he didn't either yell at me or tell that I should or should not have done this or that. Did he hate me? It sure felt that way. I did know that mostly he just wanted to be left alone, at least from me. If I even just tried to talk to him I knew it was an unwelcome interruption of his time and I always felt so uncomfortable that I would hardly ever go to him and would go to my mom instead. She was the *nice one*. My mom bent over backwards to love on us, compliment us, give us hugs and kisses, and tell us how wonderful we were, but it was all so excessive that it was not believable - again, my experience. It didn't take long to realize that I could not trust either one of them. I felt quite alone.

Both of my parents had forms of obsessive compulsive behaviors. Strange little things, like everything that came in the house had to get a date put on it, like one time I turned over a dustpan and I saw "6/23/64 Schweg 64cents" and you had better not leave the light on if you walked out of a room, or else! One gave zero compliments, to anyone, ever. Another gave excessive amounts of compliments, regardless. Basically, he had his set of idiosyncrasies, and she had hers. I was stuck somewhere in the middle .... confused, alone, trying to understand. Either love was withheld, or I was smothered in it. It made so sense to my little mind, and so I tried to run from it, to hide, I tried to be different than who I was .... maybe they would love me the way I needed to be loved.

Growing up I had little-to-no choices, I was not able to live my life, I had to live theirs, and meet their need but my needs were left unmet. In fact, as I reminisce about my childhood I have very few memories and most of the ones I have aren't pretty. Most of my childhood was spent being numb, just trying to survive, trying to understand, but not doing a very good job of it. Most of my childhood I wanted to get away from all of this and yet it seemed really hard to move out. One reason is that I had no training whatsoever of how to navigate the world. I didn't know how to cook anything, pay bills or balance a checkbook, how to clean a bathroom. I didn't know what to do if my tire got flat or if I ran out of gas, if a button popped off or how to ask others for help. All I knew how to do was to ask them for help. So, I felt very dependent on the two of them. So dependent that I truly felt as if I might die if I left, that I didn't know if I could make it on my own.

Then one day it was all too much. I didn't tell them I wanted to move out because I didn't know what they would say or do. Would they support this? Would they challenge my competence? Would they agree with the move or try and talk me out of it? Can you imagine how distant the connection between me and them? I went out and rented a tiny little apartment and that night announced that I was moving. I'm still not sure if the looks on their faces were shock, surprise, or anger. I do remember from both of them a sharp intake of breath. I didn't know what it meant ... I didn't ask and they didn't say. And so I moved out.

I have no idea how I have learned everything I have learned except that somehow you learn. You learn what you need to learn. You learn what you want to learn. And the biggest lesson that I learned was that I wanted to live a much better life. I finally began to see that I did not have to continuing doing the things I was taught in the way that I was taught.... I realized there were other ways. This is when I began to live my life as my choice.

My hope for you is that you realize that long-time patterns can be changed and altered and that you can choose to live you life that makes sense to you.

Your Life, Your Choice!

Huge hugs and big love,

Debbie

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