Katy & I

I had to share a few more pictures of Oregon, mostly my instagram pics, because they are some of my favorites. And I wanted to share something that has been weighing me down. Hopefully to find clarity and to give thanks for what is true and already very clear.

I did see my sisters in Oregon and sadly that part of my trip did not go so well. It was good, then went really bad. Family and past events can be such a difficult thing to navigate through. It can really suck! Grudges, misunderstandings and misplaced anger can bubble up from deep down, especially after not seeing each other for over 4 years.

I moved away from a very difficult childhood at an early age and have focused hard on looking forward and building a happy, safe and beautiful life for myself and my family. For me, this meant keeping my past and my family at a distance, pretty much doing the exact opposite of everything I knew growing up.  This has worked for me and I am thankful everyday for the happy life I’ve carved out for myself.

It is difficult to know what to do when it comes to family. How do I release the past and also make room for the people in that past into my future?   Having no control as a child has forced me to take control of my life in a big way. So much so, that when cornered, up against a wall, when feeling unsafe and losing control, I tend to become closed off and angry.

I am learning so much as I  become older and still have so much to learn. One thing is becoming very clear. I know exactly the kind of people I need in my life.

Seeing my friend Katy (above) on this same trip (after all the drama) thankfully helped me emerge from murky waters. She really stepped in as a true friend and brought sunshine back into my Oregon trip. I learned so much about myself and the relationships that I need and want in my life.

I learned from her that there are so many of us out there with heartbreak, abuse, and tumultuous stories. I am not alone! Our stories are not worse, better or more horrible than the next. They are unique and personal and we carry and deal with them differently and it is painful and tender and very sensitive.

Every woman has a sacred story and when we give that story to someone, we can only hope that they take special care to gently hold it and carry it without judgement, with care, love and acceptance, without fault, blame and without using it as a tool for insult later.

I rely heavily on my husband and children to be my safe place, but it is so good to have a safe place in my friends (you know who you are). Katy, thank you for being a safe place for me. Thank you for gently holding my story in your heart. I carry your story in mine, always.

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11 Responses to Clarity

  1. kt says:

    i love that you are putting yourself out there…. speaking our truth allows others to speak their own too, i truly believe this. How comforting it is to find a safe place to exhale, which sound like what you have created with your husband and children, this truly nurtures our spirits…… are one of those bright lights regina your art can’t help but show this, so glad you came and shared your wonderful self with me and my family:)
    xoxo katy

  2. Angella says:

    thank you for sharing Regina. Sometimes I look at my favorite blogs and think to myself: “these people have perfect lives and here I am closed up in my small little world- chronic fatigue and pain and all the emotional pain and deep wounds from childhood- I’m a mess!!!” It’s good to know that I am not alone and that wonderful people like you persevere and create happiness for others despite having battles to fight too. It’s encouraging in a very important way. I love your spirit and you are a real inspiration to me. Big hug.

  3. sperlygirl says:

    love to you for sharing…i understand how heavy that can feel. finding and setting your needs and boundaries in a family situation can often be ‘the ultimate lesson’ in so many ways. i hear you, regina. i hold your story dearly and send you much love, my friend. so happy that you were able to cultivate sunshine on your trip – sending you more from here. xo

  4. elsa says:

    Regina ~
    I always thought that I had a good relationship with my 2 sisters and 1 of my 3 brothers, especially my brother. When our Dad got sick things were said that completely crushed me and then when he died it was even worse.
    I moved away from California and haven’t spoken to any of them for over 4 years. It’s been sad to realize that what I thought was true, isn’t, that the relationship that I thought we all had was false. I made the decision to remove myself from them because of the abusive things that were said for my own mental health. It hasn’t been easy for me, but I’m a happier person because of it.
    You are so brave to share this in such a graceful way. Thank you so much.

  5. What a beautiful post. I love you my friend! XOXOX

  6. Michi D says:

    Regina, reading this post and nodding my head in 100% total “get it” mode ~ being safe is so very important whatever that means to each of us…sending you much peace and positive vibes from the East Coast ! Michi

  7. beki says:

    Oh goodness Regina, I want to give you a big hug! I completely understand. There is a reason the family I came from is rarely mentioned on my blog. The only thing I’ve ever really wanted from life was to have a safe, loving family, which is what I have created for myself. Anytime I feel like that is threatened, I go into protective mode, and unfortunately, when my family comes around, it brings out the mama bear in me. I hate it. I’m learning that it’s best to not deal with them, which is taking time to accept.
    I’m happy that you had such a positive experience on your trip (despite the negative one). It’s those special moments that keep us going!

  8. Koliti says:

    Hi Regina! (love your instagram pics with the black border!)
    I so KNOW what you’re going through. With regards to the family I was born into, my motto is: I can either keep in touch or I can keep my sanity – I chose sanity. After I moved out of my parents house at 18, I feel like I have “re-raised” myself and that I was the “loving, nuturing, supportive” presence in my own life. I tried to reconnect with my mom after my dad died, but it was clear that it was the same SH*T, just a different day. The only child she can see is my brother – and he pulled a knife on me one time and I was not willing to see if there would be a secone time. My sister told me, “every time the phone rings I cringe because I think it’s you calling me” – I told her life was too short and not to worry because I would not be calling her again. The attempt to re-connect with my mom – that was all one-sided – if I didn’t call her or go to see her, there was no communication. Oh, well, I tried. Regina, you have a BEAUTIFUL family and great artistic talent – you have ultimately won life’s greatest lottery by having your heaven on earth! Since we’re both in Tucson, if you’d ever like to meet for tea, or dessert 🙂 just send an email. (My computer has a virus right now so no speedy replies). We could be kindred spirits – I wish you well ~Koliti

  9. I am glad there was light at the end of the tunnel Regina. Family things can be so hard to to deal with. And yes, you are right there are so many of us with this kind of heartbreak and it feels good to know we are not alone. You have done a great job in creating the perfect life for you and your family. Big Hugs! xo

  10. Edna says:

    I loved this open and honest post. It really hit home with me and I have to say, getting rid of the toxic people in my life was the most liberating thing I could have ever done for myself, and my little family of 4. I tried in vain for years to force a relationship with family who didn’t want to know the true me for various reasons and I finally realized I’m just too far removed from the lives they’ve chosen to ever connect with them. Childhood was difficult to say the least, and unfortunately, the cycle continues with most of my family and it pains me to watch them repeat the same mistakes our parents made. While it’s all very sad, I don’t mourn those lost relationships any longer and instead, put that energy into my wonderful husband and children. You’re so strong to not only recognize the problems and the problem people, but to share such raw emotion with your blog fans shows a caring heart and true character. Bless you!

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