Wednesday, January 02, 2008

Ringing Out the Old

Should auld acquaintance be forgot,
And never brought to mind?
Should auld acquaintance be forgot,
And days of auld lang syne.


Although I have sung these lyrics at the stroke of midnight every January first for most of my born days, seldom have I ever stopped to think about what they really mean. Apparently, the definition of "Auld Lang Syne" means "old long since," or "old long ago." So as I follow the theme of the song in accordance with the New Year, I find myself faced with some provoking questions: Should old relationships be forgot, and never brought to mind? Should old times be forgotten as well?

At the stroke of midnight on 1/1/08, I was confronted with the cold, hard truth...and the answer, in my case, was a resounding "yes."

For almost three years now, I have been caught in a limbo of love, compassion, anger, and hurt. A relationship that was very dear to me was ruined as a result of a lie, or rather many lies, told by someone with the power to manipulate those closest to him with the artful precision of a master puppeteer. This relationship did not die an instant death; because of the relative connection, our paths continued to cross on holidays and special occasions, therefore preventing a wake, a funeral, and a mourning period, so that I could finally move toward the final acceptance of knowing that what once was, would be no more. I wanted so desperately to heal, to have closure.

I was naive enough to believe that healing might actually come out of these forced reunions; that old feelings of silliness and sisterhood might override any current feelings of betrayal and underlying loathe. I tried to make it right, to make it "normal." Lord knows, I tried. But eventually I came to realize that it wasn't up to me, nor was it in my power, to try to control the situation. You see, the man behind the curtain was running the entire show, and continued to maneuver all the controls even after the curtain was pulled back to expose all of his deceit. As long as he had those by his side who still believed he was the great and powerful man he pretended he was, who still needed to live in their emerald castle and drive on golden streets, he could fly his balloon wherever he wanted, dropping sandbags down to squash the rest of us who continued to look up instead of down.

This year, I've decided to make a resolution, perhaps for the first time in twenty years. I resolved that, for now at least, I have to let go of the prospect of restoring this relationship to it's original condition. I have to let go of the responsibility of "making it all better." I have done all I can, and there is only one person now who can repair this broken connection. I can not allow myself to feel hope and promise, only to be shot down and critically wounded by someone who has allowed themselves to be under the influence of so many people and things. This battle has consumed me in every sense of the word...it has affected other relationships, it has stifled my talents, and it has turned me into someone I don't recognize anymore. I can not let something so negative have so much power in my life. In other words, I have to let it go. I have to let it go for good.

-For auld lang syne, my dear,
For auld lang syne.
We'll take a cup o' kindness yet,
For auld lang syne.


Perhaps one day we will drink that cup of kindness together; perhaps we can do it for "auld lange syne", and completely bypass the years of emptiness and unrest. But I can not think about that day at this time. For now, it is over, and I will accept it. I will move on, and not waste one more minute of my life worrying over something that's not mine to worry about anymore . I will place it where it belongs--in God's hands--and let Him do the rest. Perhaps He's been telling me all along that this battle was never mine to fight to begin with...after all, the lines were so unfairly drawn. So I will accept human defeat, and let it lie in the fate of the supernatural. The only relationship I will work at healing right now is the one between me and my soul.

32 comments:

LZ Blogger said...

I just came over here to answer the question you left on my blog... but then I read your post here and my answer seems somewhat trite in comparison to your post. First... let me say that it is obvious that you have been VERY hurt by this person and the puppet master. I am truly sorry that someone you "loved" has caused you such pain. But it does however... sound as if you are on the right track to healing. I wish you well!
Back to the reason for my post... the answer is GaGa is actually the name given to my MIL by my kids when they were small. The stocking was made for her about 30 years ago by my wife and hangs on our hearth every Christmas (weither she spends Christmas with us or not). ~ jb///
P.S. Thanks for the nice compliments about my wife too. I am TRULY BLESSED!

annie said...

I think letting go is sometimes the best thing we can do. I am praying you are blessed beyond measure in 2008!

Dust-bunny said...

Dear Jerry,

You are very welcome...I do sense your feeling of being blessed, and from the looks of it, you truly are!

You know, both of us in the relationship were hurt...I'm not denying she was hurt, also...but she was hurt only because she chose to believe the lies. If she believed the truth, the problem between us would not exist. But sometimes the truth is way too much for people to bear...it could even mean a complete life change, and I think that might be a little too much for most people to deal with. So I do understand where she's coming from. But that doesn't mean I have to continue to deal with the hurtful remarks and actions.

What finally clinched it was this New Year's Eve. At the stroke of midnight, when this person called my small home and asked to speak to everyone in the house except me, I finally realized that the relationship is over for now. If it was up to me, it would be over for good (mostly because of the "puppet master")...but we will always have to see each other because we're all related.

So as I said, I have placed it into God's hands. He'll know the right thing to do, because I sure don't anymore!

Take good care,
Lisa

Dust-bunny said...

Dear Annie,

Amen to that, sister. I have an awful hard time doing it, though! But if I want to get out of my rut, there is no other choice. I trust that God will lead me in all the right directions to bring about healing, even if it takes a while.

Thank you for the prayers!

Take good care,
Lisa

Matty said...

Lisa,
I'm sorry to see that you still give this 'person' so much power over you...that even now...it seems he has the upper hand because he takes up so much space in your head. You give him way too much space...on paper & in your mind.
Let it go.....and let him go...he doesn't deserve your time & energy.
What goes around surely comes around...and he will get his 'just' rewards.
I'm absolutely sure his wife knows all about it...she is probably too ashamed to admit it or apologize. Her loss!
Wishing you peace & love in the New Year.

Dust-bunny said...

Dear Matty,

Actually, he has no power over me...but he has tremendous power over his wife (I can not even begin to get into the drama that has unfolded since his "return")...and that power has a name that begins with "m" and ends with "y", unfortunately.

Her opinion of me was what was controlling me, because I felt that it was based on a giant lie. But I grew so tired of living like that...worrying about it at some point during every day...and I realized that hey, you know what? I did NOT do anything. It doesn't matter what she chooses to believe. That really is HER problem, not mine, because I know the truth.

And as long as she lets him have that much control over her by accepting all of his "gifts" as proof of his "love" for her...then our relationship has absolutely no hope. I really just came to the conclusion, just the other day, that I would no longer attempt to have a relationship with someone who values money, jewels, and all things designer over little ol' me! Because my love and friendship are priceless.

Oh well...her loss!!

Take good care,
Lisa

Big Dave T said...

You know, that's one thing about getting older that's not so bad--I care less about what people think of me. I've learned to accept myself for who I am. If others can't, that's their problem. We all know you as a very caring person. If others somehow have a problem with you, I've got to feel that the problem rests with them.

simply me said...

Good for you Li. I did it years ago and the results have been triumphant. I encourage you to let go and sustain your heart in a healthier place.

Kacey said...

I couldn't resist looking for Auld Lang Syne in Wikipedia. In addition to the translations you gave from the Scots, there was another from a work of Fairytales by Matthew Fitt. He used it as in "Once Upon a Time". Your tormentor does, indeed, tell fairytales and bad things happened "once upon a time" to you. Give up this relationship and stop chewing on yourself. Besides, who will people really believe---our sweet dust bunny or someone who has spent time in the slammer? We do not have to spend our whole lifetime with dysfunctional people in our life!

Loving Annie said...

You are absolutely doing the wise and right thing for you. This has caused you so much heartache and stress. Letting go of the chains that tormented you will let you be YOU again in the best of ways.

Don't ever let someone's eles's lies define you. It's hard not to try to fight that.

But they will be who they are - and goodness is NOT in everyone. It's best to move away from people like that, no matter who they were to you once.

This is a wonderful resolution for you to make, and the healing will be huge...

((hugs))

Loving Annie

Carine said...

Lisa, hopefully time will help and if it can't help, it will cause you much less pain.
Remember, what you are missing now will be filled with another type of hopeful joy in the future.

Paul said...

That is the hardest - when the paths have to continue to cross. At least you don't have to live with the person or see them daily - I've seen situations like that.

Sounds like you've seen what is and isn't under your control, and that's major.

Dust-bunny said...

Dear Big Dave,

Thanks for the complement, and I really don't mean to toot my own horn, but I have so many dear people in my life and I tend to be a friendly person. However, the same could be said about this other person. The major difference between the two of us is that I worship a God of mercy, compassion and forgiveness, and she worships money. That is the cold, hard truth.

For example, on Christmas she pointed out all the jewelry she was wearing and told of where she got her clothing (a very expensive shop I can't afford)...then asked the question, "How much do you think I'm worth right now?"

I wanted to say, "Well, you may well be worth $100,000 right now, but I, however, am priceless always."

Take good care,
Lisa

Dust-bunny said...

Dear Simply Me,

From someone like you who knows the whole situation and everyone involved on a personal level, I know you can understand where I'm coming from.

I really have decided to make a lot of changes this year. I have hit rock bottom in this situation as well as several others (bills, anyone?), and I have nowhere to go but "up." I really do feel that God is putting me through all of this for a reason. As you have said, and so many others have said...we can't change other people, but we CAN change our attitudes. I have really decided to heed that advice this year! And I have a feeling this will be a year of great things for my family.

xoxo,
Lisa

Dust-bunny said...

Dear Kacey,

Unfortunately, these people will always be a part of my life as long as I'm married to my husband (which will be forever)...but I have come to realize that I can't plan on them "seeing the light" or acknowledging the "err of their ways." To them, they are right for measuring people according to their pocketbooks because somewhere along the way, that is what became an acceptable standard to them.

I've accepted that we are all very different people with very different values. I will let it go; my husband can not, and that's okay. I understand he sees someone different, the unaffected person he grew up with. But my health--my MENTAL health, especially--was in jeopardy, and something had to give. And that was me.

...I know that you know pretty much firsthand how I feel. ;)

Take good care,
Lisa

Dust-bunny said...

Dear Loving Annie,

I, too, feel that the healing will be huge as I give up the control I so desperately wanted, but honestly never had. The time has come to move on to bigger and better things...this has consumed such a large portion of my life, I decided that my life would never get better or go in a more positive direction if I held onto the anger and the frustration any longer.

Here's to a New Year filled with hope and promise for all of us!

Take good care,
Lisa

Dust-bunny said...

Dear Carine,

The funny thing is, I thought I was missing so much but I actually don't miss it at all. This person has changed so drastically that I don't even recognize her anymore.

God bless her, I hope she finds whatever it is that she's looking for. I really do.

Take good care,
Lisa

Dust-bunny said...

Dear Paul,

I can't explain it, but what I feel is major. I feel like Tommy, and I finally crashed through the mirror!! "I'm free!" And I can't allow myself to go back to that dark place of lost control. I can't control them or how they think or feel, but I can control my thoughts and feelings toward them. I've always known this, but practicing it is HUGE to me...it feels really, really good.

Take good care,
Lisa

Shimmerrings said...

Dust Bunny, I'm glad you finally are coming to terms with the reality of the situation, and letting go of any illusion related to the loving reality of your own world, that is not present in their world. It's hard to let go of things when we cannot understand how others can be the way that they are. It was one of the hardest things, in my own coming to terms with my adult world... things are not always the way they seem... then again, sometimes they just are, which is sometimes far worse. We can't always make things be the way that we want them, in fact, have to accept that we often won't have it our way. Someone close to me once said, "You just have to accept that everyone is not going to like you, Sarah, even if you like them. You can't make people like you" What a reality check! More importantly, our safe and perfect world comes crashing down, when we discover that things are not always pretty on the outside of our protective glass bubble. Try seeing it this way: He's not the man behind the curtain... that gives him far too much power... God is the man behind the curtain... and His pupose, in all things, is far greater than the very small petty world that some choose to operate out of. Leave them behind in the dust... in fact, Dust Bunny, you are already miles ahead... keep makin' them tracks! And don't be bitter, because it gives them undue power. Just accept what is and let go. What will be will be... don't expect anything from them, only Peace from within your ownself, and you won't be disappointed.

Dust-bunny said...

Dear Shimmerings,

Thank you for such an insightful message. You are spot on with so many things.

I guess one of the reasons I had such a hard time letting go of my relationship with her was because she's not this "evil" person who concocts ways to hurt people (although the same can't be said about her husband)...she's actually fun and very nice when she wants to be...it's just that, unfortunately, glitz and glamour became how she defined herself, and from what I can see at the supermarket checkout line, that's not really such a great thing.

Instead of him taking on her good traits, she took on his bad ones. The whole family sees this; it's not just me. However, in her quest to hang on to her lifestyle (which she admitted she "loves"), she had to defend him, because to go against him and leave him would leave her in a financial position that she could no longer relate to. She would have to leave her beautiful house and wealthy neighborhood, and that would be a lot for many people (I know; I lived through it myself). Don't get me wrong; I certainly don't think it's a bad thing to love one's lifestyle. But once your lifestyle starts to hurt other people--or you use it to hurt other people--then something's not right there.

So her only choice was to accuse me of "provoking" him to do the nasty thing he did, and promote that lie to the rest of the family, along with her husband's nonsense (he lied about me being a drug abuser...I can't even handle drinking wine every day, and have never used drugs in my life...thankfully the family saw through that lie).

Funny thing, though...if she really believed that I "provoked" him, or that he never did what he did, why would she ever agree to see me again? Why would she ever step foot anywhere that I was, or even invite me to her house for her kids' birthdays (while he was away, of course)? The reason this has gone on so long is that my husband and I know that she knows the truth, and that I did nothing...she knows this...but I guess we were hoping that since she had that knowledge, she would "see the light" and take a chance on leaving this man who has abused her mentally, emotionally, and yes, even sometimes physically throughout the years.

But alas...the money means more. How she looks to the rest of the world means more. It's all about the vanity.
I realized that this is a very big part of her life, and she's not about to achieve any level of humility any time soon. So I had to let go of any hope of us rectifying this situation for good. My husband hasn't; that's okay. As long as he keeps it to himself, it's fine...I understand it's his sister...but as for me, it's just over. Really over.

Take good care,
Lisa

Dust-bunny said...

Dear Shimmerings,

PS...and I must mention that we did in fact send a letter to him while he was away asking him to work with us in letting this go and everyone forgiving and forgetting. We told him it doesn't matter any more who did what, the fact remains that we are all part of the same family and we should put our faith in God and make amends with each other.

He ripped the letter up and threw it away.

Shimmerrings said...

I once had a friend who had a husband who came onto me, once. Eventually, they divorced, and it was more her fault, because she had been having an affair (though he had done plenty wrong, in the past, himself). Once things were over with them, I admitted to her what he had done (I think the reason I did this was because she believed that he had messed around with another of her friends). Well, as it turned out, she had too much pride to hear it. She did not want to hear it, in fact, She later told me that she had confronted him about it, and he said that I reminded him of her, but that he would never have blah, blah, blah. So be it. She was the sort that always had to be right, and had to prove it, even if she was wrong. She liked to be top dog, in everything, and was very revengeful. For her to accept that her husband came onto me would have been humiliating for her. On the inside, I knew that she knew that he really had. Some people just cannot deal with truth, when it means their own structure comes tumbling down.

Shimmerrings said...

P.S. I know this isn't even important, but I hate to present the facts wrong. As I was writing my last response, I was having a hard time remembering, because it was probably 15 or 20 years ago, maybe more. But, the way it happened was that he found me on my mail route, and wanted to have lunch with me. This would not have been any biggy, mind you. We had all been great friends and had met him for lunch on more than one occassion. He acted as if he just accidentally saw me and thought, "Hey, may has well have lunch together." As I continued to recall, I remembered that they were already separated, but I still could not believe that he would try to ask me out, expecting that I might actually go out with him, even though his soon to be ex was one of my best friends. I do remember that he had also like tried to play footsie with me, under the table, once. Bottom line is, she knew he had played around, in the past, during the length of their marriage. And she had found out that he had played around with one of her closest friends, before they were separated. Someone she had trusted (the way she earned trust was to make everyone her best friend). I had told the girl, who had messed around with him (we knew that she had, but she was not admitting it) that he had tried to get me to go out with him (which was the truth) trying to get her to admit something. I felt as if I had betrayed my friend, just by telling the girl that, even though it was true, and even though they were separated, at the time, and even though I had not taken him up on it. Which is what led me to finally tell my friend about it, because I had wondered if the girl had told her, and I wasn't so sure what she might have fabricated and conjured up, if she had, indeed, told her. Anyways, to end this long tale, my friend didn't appreciate hearing it from me, and went to the lengths to brush it off, as if I had gone way overboard, about it all, by imagining that he was interested in me, and so she set about trying to make me look and feel like a fool, and being very patronizing about it, as well. So, I know the feeling you have gone through. The lesson is not for you, as much as it is for her, Dust Bunny. And I knew that my friend knew, very well, that what I had said was the truth... just as I am sure the person that you speak of does, too.

Dust-bunny said...

Dear Shimmerings,

The funny thing about your last comment was that I, too, had trouble remembering certain things after a few months went by, and was later called a liar. I think it's human nature to sort of "block out" any "un-pleasantries", especially after so many years! Why WOULD you want to recall that situation...it sounds like it was very painful.

And I'm certainly not glad that you had to go through a hurtful experience like that, but because you were kind enough to share it with me, it made me feel better to know I'm not the only one who has had this happen to them.

I think when people are insecure with themselves, they tend to be very proud, even if that doesn't make sense. She spends a lot of time in front of the mirror, and tries very hard to be "perfect" in every sense of the word. The sad thing is that because she's so beautiful, she got by on her looks all these years, and it's how she identifies herself. For her to admit that her husband came on to someone not as stellar as herself would be very humiliating to her, because she measures everything by what's on the outside most of the time. I know she has the ability to appreciate what's on someone's "inside"...but again, she hasn't shown much of that side of her for awhile.

Oh, I could go on and on...but I really need to just let this relationship lie for now. Funny, but once I made this decision and wrote my post, all of a sudden, she was brought up every day, whether she called here to thank my husband for painting her office (she has only called the house phone once before in the last two years, and that was right before Christmas), or receiving a photo card wishing everyone "Happy New Year" with a picture of her, him and their two boys (she only sends pictures of the boys every year, so this was a first). I think God tests me sometimes, I really do!

But now that I've vented, I really do hope it's going to be buried in the back of my mind somewhere for a nice, long time (I'm not naive enough to think it will go away completely)!

So thanks again for your support and "cyber-friendship"! You are a beautiful soul, and I appreciate all that you so generously shared with me.

Take good care,
Lisa

Shimmerrings said...

Happy New Year!

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