Life consists of plenty of ups and downs. However, years of inspirational posters have reminded me that in life how I respond matters the most. My life isn’t riddled with obstacles, and this is largely because my parents had to work so hard to make us comfortable. That being said, years of familial heartache has plagued my family all because of a little favoritism. I won’t specify the details of this favoritism for the sake of my parents. Needless to say, those who should love us unconditionally undermine family connection and then blame us for it.
I got a little excited at this blog prompt. Not because I’m a pompous egomaniac riddled with self-adoration, but because I wanted to take some time to be proud of myself.
Back to the family thing. The reason that I’m going to brag a little is because I HAVE adhered to those principles of inspirational posters. I have (in my view) learned how to respond to that favoritism.
Initially I responded with apathy. I would act like they didn’t hurt me. I would act like jabs at my mom’s and dad’s character didn’t affect our family. But I saw their tears. I saw my sister yearn to visit my cousins but be ignored in her requests. While this made the events less important for my well-being, this response was really harmful. I had detached myself so much from the situation that I wasn’t even recognizing value in my family’s feelings.
It wasn’t until a couple months ago that I realized how much I’ve internalized heartache in my upbringing. By staying silent and creating a facade of eternal joy, I was able to distance myself from the issues. But I’ve developed the resolve to cry. I began seeing pain in my mother’s eyes, and I began learning instead of merely observing.
Crying is often seen as embarrassing, humiliating, and a sign of weakness. But now, I see it differently. It took strength for my sister and mom to yell and cry and see value in their own emotions. And the truth is, we can’t value others’ emotions until we start valuing our own.
I’ve trained myself to cry when something bothers me, and to have the bravery to dig deep and ask myself whether or not I’m happy. That does take resolve. I resolved to stop internalizing and start crying.