Saturday, January 14, 2012

Blog supporters are the new Dr. Phil

Dear Blog Readers,

Your thoughts, even the tough ones, are helping me more than you know.  You all are like a bunch of therapists who don't charge a fee!!  But seriously, your compasses are helping to point Bulldog and me in the right direction and maybe DJ will gain some insight from your input as well.  Your cyber support is inspiring.  You all have become a regular part of my day now. Thank you.

With Affection,
The Author

Will the owner of this issue please stand up?

DJ is doing better, thank goodness. She talked about not being able to be herself in front of us, especially when she is in the company of her friends.  And in listening to her, I think I'm really getting that much of this is about her feelings about her.  I think she may have painted herself into a corner, in a manner of speaking.

Bulldog and I, well, mostly "I", could be accused of being "helicopter" parents.  We, again, mostly I, hover.  But we also are pretty darn good at hearing and respecting the "back off" message.  If DJ will not speak up about what she wants, needs, what irritates her, what we can do to help, etc., etc., how the heck can we know what to do, or what not to do?  Bulldog and I are pretty skilled about a lot of things, but ESP ain't one of our skills.  We have trouble reading our own individual minds, forget reading someone else's mind.  Hell, we can't even read each other's mind, which I personally think is a blessing.  I do not want anyone to know about the inner workings of my brain; the tour requires a guide who is fluent in the language of my brain and the languages of whoever is trying to understand me, poor soul.

DJ keeps talking about wanting a fresh start.  Flying Pig calls that "Geographic therapy."  No one is mocking DJ here, but don't we all entertain that thought?  And isn't that more a form of fantasy rather than something we can actually employ unless we want to go the path of Olivia Newton-John's former lover?  Google it-the dude just disappeared AND tried to make it look like he may have been a victim of foul play, but he was found out.  Even if he weren't found out, wouldn't his next life necessitate that he live a life of lies?

I don't think DJ gets that yet.  Her former life as JD was a life based on untruths and half truths.  It was necessary and it worked well for years, unless you consider that JD would spend quite a bit of time alone in his room so that DJ could disengage from acting like JD for awhile.  So, if DJ goes somewhere new, starts afresh, if she keeps the circumstances of what led her to this new life to herself, isn't she exactly where she started two years ago?  Isn't that sort of jumping from the frying pan into another frying pan?

My perspective is becoming pretty clear. She's got to learn to live in the skin she's in. Furthermore, while Bulldog and I may have a piece in this process, the lion's share of the puzzle pieces are hers.  FINALLY, I get it, Bulldog has gotten it all along; now we just have to wait for little miss can't be wrong to figure it out.  And I refer to DJ that way tongue in cheek because that very quality of hers, that she cannot be wrong, could get in her way.  I don't know where she gets that from (sheepish smirk), but she's been that way her entire life.

When she was about 6 years old, before we knew how poor her eyesight was, we passed a horse farm with the shrubbery trimmed in the shape of.....horses, of course.  She swore up and down they were lions.  All of us in the car explained what we saw, the irrationality of trimming bushes into the shape of lions at a horse farm, the logic of horse farm bushes resembling horses.  It didn't matter-she knew she was right.  Just like how she swore she saw Santa from  the upstairs hallway that looked into the family room when she was on her way to the bathroom. YEARS later, she acquiesed.  Hopefully, it won't take as long for her to realize her perspective just might have to shift a bit in this instance.  That maybe, just maybe, the reason she feels like she can't be herself is in her head, partly because she's a teenager and partly because she's still learning to feel comfortable in her own skin.

Bulldog and I are worn out, but it still feels so good to see a positive shift in her demeanor and outlook.  This past week has seemed excruciatingly long and we, luckily, were able to put our work-lives and personal lives on hold. This coming week, we will return to our lives and still support DJ where she's at, both personally and geographically.  And hopefully, she'll come to an understanding- on at least this one issue-that "being herself" is largely about her and has very little to do with us.  It's a lesson many of us will spend our lives learning and relearning.