Ducks follow the leader, not making decisions on their own. It can take them a long time to decide it is time to eat, back and forth, back and forth on the lawn til they finally approach the feeding area.

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My fate was in their hands.
Constant worry,
take my own side,
stick up for myself,
“be fired…get outta here,
goodbye” by extended family.
Those are the words
that have echoed my thoughts,
at times controlled decisions
for almost seventy years.
.
My fate was in their hands.
I didn’t know the word “disowned”,
… that is what “fired” meant to me
at an early age.
Stick up for myself,
and whoever I displeased would
not be a part of my life any more.
.
My fate was in their hands.
They, being extended family,
would tell me I wouldn’t fit in 
if I didn’t conform to their thinking.
Now the things that have haunted
me all these years
may seen piddly and small to many,
but it meant I wasn’t authentically me.
It was about keeping up appearances,
image of self, family and home.
The right spouse, house, job,
meeting expectations of others.
Not rocking the Mayflower.
I, over the years … this will seem
strange to some… became increasingly
depressed because life became in
disarray.
.
My fate is in my own hands.
This is very complex,
 and very simple.
“No, you don’t think that”,
was the easiest to fix
by standing up
 and saying “Yes, I do.”
I think I may be a bit
too outspoken now
…. I can live with that.
It took a long time to get here.
.
My fate was in my own hands.
The  time I stood up to
my Mother, when I couldn’t
even call a “I see your side”
she never spoke to me again. 
Disinherited me,
to the day she died..
a total of five years, 
3 months,
16 days.
.
My fate was in my own hands.
 Mother had asked
the impossible
of me:
to stop the marriage
of my thirty year old daughter,
because of cultural differences
between her future husband
and our family.
All these years of worry,
of worry of “being fired”
by my parents,
(my father, the peace maker,
had died in 1992)
and it was a clear cut,
no doubt I had to hold my stand
on what I believed was right
regardless of the consequences
that ended our relationship.
.
My fate is in my own hands.
My work now is unravel the
twists and turns and return
my present
to what I need it to be.
Stand up for my beliefs.
Continue on the road less
traveled…to follow my own
path, not the path others
want me on.
.
The truth being,
most of my life,
my life was in the hands
of others:
in my immediate family,
spouse, extended family.

The need to fit in,
to conform to please
and be accepted.
.
.

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