This feature used to be called “Oversharing w/ Cassie” but I have realized that really this is just about me sharing moments of my life with anyone that decides to read this. If you do read it, thank you! I appreciate you.
There are moments in your life that define your life. These last few weeks have been that for me. Stuff has happened that I wasn’t expecting and it sent me mentally into a twirl. My last post was literally on September 9, 2018. It has been over a month now that I have posted any content. During that time, I had a family member pass away. This had me interact with my family for the first time in awhile. It is this that has sent me into a bit of a weird depression state. It is only partially due to them because part of it is how I feel about it. I own my part of all this, but I also am allowing myself to understand where some of the anger, hurt, and pain are at right now. I want to speak in generalities about some of this. Yes, the people involved will recognize themselves, but I do not want others to be able to immediately identify these people. This is because at the end of the day I still love my family, even if they have not shown me that back.
I visited a family member during the events of this family member passing away (after he had passed, since I wasn’t afforded to know he was even sick). During one of these visits they tried to make me feel bad about my blog. It was so apparent by their actions. I had tried to share that I was doing book blogging, so they would see I was interacting with the publishing industry. It didn’t matter to them. They acted like what I was doing wasn’t good or that I wasn’t doing things to their caliber. It wasn’t being proud of me or anything like that. Then my partner and I drove out of town and went to several stops. One of them being Half Price Books, which I love. The issue was that I noticed for the second time that being in the store gave me unreasonable anxiety. This had me going down a path of questioning things from my past regarding reading. I quickly realized that the atmosphere of HPB was similar to bookstores I had went into as a child, one specifically in the town that I live in now that is not there now. I realized that when I went to the bookstore I was always having to ask if I was allowed to get certain books. I was told certain books I couldn’t read, but in the same breathe the person would tell me that I should read everything. This person wanted me to read what they read it feels like now. That I had to read what they wanted, but reading is supposed to be fun. It is supposed to be about reading what you want to read and enjoy. It should have been that I was reading at all. Many people don’t read anything. If I wanted to read all Fear Street books as a child for escapism, that should have been allowed. Maybe it was my world of comics. If I wanted to read Babysitters Club? Should have been allowed. Sweet Valley High? SHOULD HAVE BEEN ALLOWED TO READ IT. It should have always been about the reading occurring, not meeting some preconceived notion of what one should be reading. When I recognized that this was why I was anxious in the store, I started getting sad. Sad over reading. I was in this bookstore having anxiety because I felt that I needed someone to ask if I was allowed to get what I wanted to get. I felt that I had to ask someone else for approval to get the books I wanted to get. I went into knowing that I wanted to fill in the gaps in my Stephanie Plum series, but it doesn’t matter in the moment. It didn’t matter to my brain because PTSD doesn’t work that way. It can be triggered by the smallest and most ridiculous thing. This well-lit bookstore did it to me.
Since this incident with this family member and the realization of the well-lit bookstore, I have been in a sad place in regards to reading. This person wanted to take my blog and reading away from me, in my mind. A person that should have been building me up and since then it has been very hard for me to engage with my blog. I realize that this person is taking it away from me, if I stop completely from doing it, which is what has been occurring so far. My feelings though have been very much what is the point? My entire reading experience has been trying to have others decide what I read. I did it even recently on twitter when I asked others to vote between 3 books. My brain first says that I am just trying to engage and keep people interested in my reading, but the reality is that underneath it it is actually my brain saying that it needs someone else to approve what I am reading. It was one of the reasons why I felt that utilizing a jar would be good for me for awhile. I mentioned I was using one on Twitter for my reading, but I let the choice from the jar be one of the three choices. It was my way of avoiding what I wanted to do for myself. It was another way to allow others to control my world. Using a jar would take all the other people and bitterness away from reading. I need to really do that and focus on it only. This may not make me popular in the book blogging community, but I feel like it is what I need to move forward. I am tired of things holding me back, especially related to my past.
I have also been processing a lot of my past recently. This same person told me that my identity was decided by them. They didn’t stop to think about the fact that I hadn’t been around them for almost 19 years of my life. Over half of it. Our experiences, our lives, all the moments impact our identity and who we are. My identity was formed from all my life. 19 years that this person was not there. I tried to stop the conversation from happening by saying we had different belief systems. The person said they were not belief systems, but yes they actually are. I think this person thinks that belief systems are related to religious beliefs, but belief systems are the values, ideologies that a person holds true to themselves. These belief systems are built upon life experiences and yes in some parts genetics. It is the whole of life. Belief systems are what people believe about the world that they live within. It is even partially the things they wish the world was and why. It is the reasoning behind it. Those make up a person’s belief systems. My identity is formed by being homeless, living through that. It is about educating myself. It is about getting Outstanding Student of the Human and Social Services department at graduation from Ivy Tech. It is about every single moment that has made up my life. Not a moment that you think you decided. It isn’t a singular moment. Who I am is what I make of myself, not what others have tried to make me into. That is where I am at now. I am trying to own that understanding. I am myself. I am me. I don’t need approval, but this is going to be a LONG road. Back and forth through hell.
To this family member, if you read this. This is how I feel. This is how you made me feel. I am sorry if it hurts you in any way, but I am realizing my entire life has been spent feeling sorry for you and others in this family. Worrying if you all loved or even cared if I was alive or dead. This is probably dramatic to you and I don’t care. Caring about others isn’t dramatic. Trying to figure out how to move forward isn’t dramatic. It is called not living in silence. It is called being okay shouting from the mountains truths that maybe others would like to stay in the darkness. Not talking about it doesn’t do anything but have it fester inside in horrific ways. I want to learn to love myself and the world I live within. I still love you for who you are in my family, but if you ever try to hurt me again in this life I will never speak to you again. I will never see you again and I won’t regret it. If you want to be in my life, you need to be a light in it, not a darkness. I love you because you are my family, but as I process my emotions and feelings about life with you in it, I realize I do not like you as a human being. As a human being you really seem to want to hurt others. To hate people. I won’t be a part of that hate in this life. I won’t keep saying things that I don’t believe in front of you, to protect myself. I will talk about things you like still, as it has always been, but I hope the next time I see you you can ask me for the first time in my life “How are you” or “How have you been?” instead of working to tear me down or make me feel bad about something. I hope this happens, but I am not holding my breath.
This blog isn’t going anywhere, even if I take weird hiatuses through this processing. I will always come back to it. It is an outlet. These things have been where I have been. Processing. Moving forward. Trying to figure out how to live again. This is where I have been. I am alive. Still breathing and next week I plan on posting regularly so that I can keep doing something I personally enjoy and how I want to do it. If the images seem kid like or the colors childish, sorry. That is me. It is a way to process. It is a way to feel connected to aspects of my personality that I don’t get to express all the time. I am realizing I can do what I want here. Book reviews, movie reviews, show reviews, comic book reviews, You know whatever the hell I want to do because this is MY BLOG for what I want it to be. Thanks for reading!