Meaning: no longer friendly; alienated.
I have estranged myself from people who have mistreated me. But I always believed that I was so “perfect” that no one would estrange themself from me.
Well guess what? I was wrong!
Not just one but all four of my adult children have estranged themselves from me. One might think that I was a bad parent. It’s embarrassing. No, it’s downright humiliating. It’s been almost a year since I have seen any of my grandchildren.
No, I did not abuse my children. And I was a good mother. Then what was the problem?
Here is the problem. There was once a family. A very sick family. There was one parent who was the parent who acted out by getting drunk, going into rages and doing whatever he could to keep all family members under his control. He abused his spouse in many ways. His spouse was the “other” parent, the enabler, the caretaker, the one who quietly, painfully took the abuse and picked up the pieces and cleaned up the debris after every blow up. Everyone in that family had a role to play and they all played their roles well.
The family presented themselves well. Superficially they had a well-polished presentation. When examined closely, there were hairline cracks in the exterior. Some of the cracks were that they laughed a little too loud, their smiles were a little too perfect, they were quick to inform but never curious about anything, the jokes they told always had a small bite to them and quite often someone ended up being the brunt of those jokes. If you hung out with them for very long the jokes started being repeated. When you peeked through the cracks and saw the truth, they were all crying on the inside but knew how to put on a mask (happy face) for the outside world. Everyone in that family was full of anger, rage, resentment, confusion.
One day the “other” parent who was the enabler and caretaker decided that enough was enough and gathered up enough courage to try to escape and try to rescue the children from the situation. She started getting help, counseling, and deliverance and started recovering from the trauma that she had been through. She tried to take the kids with her and introduce them to the new freedom she was finding but the familiarity of the old life kept calling them and pulling them back in. They (the kids) half-heartedly tried to become free but then they discovered the Band-Aids of addictions (alcohol/drugs) instead. They settled for the Band-Aids instead of true recovery.
It was like the family had been standing in a circle with arms linked with one another holding onto one another tightly. One of the family members broke free and would not return, so the family closed the circle with the tight linking of the arms and turned their backs on the one who had broken free.
The one who broke free was me.
This is a common story with dysfunction. This happens quite often in a dysfunctional family. The family closes ranks on the one family member who seeks a new way of life (recovery).
Would I go back?
I can’t go back. I am free. I will never go back to the bondage that I was in. I can’t.
My prayer for them is that they will break free someday, too. But first they have to see the need to break free. They are adults now, still young, there is hope for them. And hope for me. My heart has been broken in many pieces but I cannot return to who I once was. It was death for me. I want my family back.
There’s nothing I can do to change their minds or make them change. They have to make the decision to change on their own. All I can do is wait.
I can also love them. Pray for them.
And live my life in freedom. I can do the things that I always wanted to do before I die because even though they choose not share to their lives with me at this time I have found freedom that I never knew and I will only become freer as time passes by.
I can continue to build that legacy that will be called overcoming.
Until we meet again, Love and blessings to you!