My dad has a podcast. Sometimes we both go on and talk about whatever. Usually it’s current events, or news and views as he calls it. I love football. I have loved football for a long time. I am able to remember so much of it, like players’ names, stats, scores, life stories, whatever. But watching games made me angry and aggressive so I had to stop watching all day Sunday, Monday night, and Thursday night. I have been “off” football for years.
My dad knows very little about me and absolutely nothing about my identity. But my entire childhood consisted of him telling me I looked feminine, my short hair was feminine, forcing me into dresses, and trying to make me be what he wanted me to be.
And he shut me down. He closed me into a deep dark place where I started dying emotionally at a small child. He denied all of the things that I knew were true about who I was inside. All of this keeps coming back up because every time I talk to him, he says something that makes me feel small. It seems like it takes a lot for him to admit when I am right and particularly when he is wrong.
I’m trying to sort all of this out even though I feel like I process and process all of this pain with both of my parents, but mainly him. I’ve been mad at my mom lately but she quickly fades to the back when I talk to him and he somehow makes me hurt again.
Honestly it feels like what is happening is that the facade’s pain and Little Zander’s pain are melting together into one complete person. It’s weird to think about myself in this way…the shell of a person I’ve been most of my life and this little boy that’s probably 6 or so years old. It’s not even two personalities, just one real child that wasn’t allowed to develop and the shell that had to form around him so that the world could not hurt him. I always felt like I didn’t have much personality, especially because I didn’t want to offend anyone or be too outspoken. I wanted to be as small as possible. I always felt like I needed to hide.
Little Zander’s personality sometimes came out unintentionally with people I trusted. It always seemed so immature when it did come out once I got to college. I have so many pictures of me sticking my tongue out or doing crazy poses in college. I think that’s the last time I really was in touch with that personality.
All I know is that I have been riding a crazy wave of pain this week that seems to peak and then settle down for a couple days. I am hoping that tomorrow is better and I can actually have a good day this week without crying.
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