It’s okay to be angry.
It’s okay to be hurt.
It’s absolutely okay to not “get over it” in whatever acceptable time frame the person or people who wronged you claim.
I have a bit of a cold going on, so does my daughter. Between her coughing last night and my own sinus pressure, it was difficult to fall asleep and stay asleep. A snow storm blew in during the late hours, and with it, some gusty winds. So while laying in bed, trying to breathe through approximately 1/2 of a nostril, I listened to the wind whip through the copper wind-chime Jon and Noodle bought for me last year.
My mind wandered to how my old wind-chime had been stolen, then I thought about all of the tools in my shed that had been stolen too. I laid in my bed, desperately trying to think of anything else, only to feel that familiar rage burn in my chest.
I remembered texting the man who had stolen my things, asking him to at least bring back my wind-chime and shears. I remembered threatening to call the police, after all, he had stolen almost everything I had out of my house and I had done nothing. I remembered wanting to stand up for myself, everyone had asked me why I hadn’t done anything? Why I had just let him take my things? I had to stand up for myself.
I remembered the text back, of him threatening to come back and take my daughter’s bed. It had been gifted to us by his ex-sister in law. Her daughter had no use for it, so she had given it to my daughter, and he thought he was going to come take it back.
I had backed down, I don’t know why I believed him. I now know that the police would’ve taken my side over a sex offender who had just robbed a woman and her child blind. I now know, that not only would he have been arrested, but I would’ve had a case in court, and that is what still bothers me, two years later.
Even last year, when I had him, his sister and his new girlfriend all threatening me via text message and Facebook chat (I had inadvertently outed him as a sex offender to his family, apparently he had chosen to hide that from them. Who knew that was a viable option? Opps.), all three of them had missed the point. They kept telling me to get over it, he wasn’t going to come back to me, all in between threats of violence and vandalism.
Some how, they all assumed that a registered sex offender was someone I wanted to be with. That a year later, after discovering the hundreds of hours logged on sex-hotlines, all of the craigslist ads and affairs, after him hurting not just me but my daughter that I wanted him back. I assume that all 3 of them didn’t know that I was in a relationship, had replaced all of the stuff he had stolen from me, and was happy knowing the true extent of what I had “lost”. I had gotten over that ridiculous relationship, and had thankfully started seeing a therapist to deal with the trauma from it and work through all of the gas-lighting and emotional abuse.
What was it that I was angry about a year later, and as it turns out two years later? It wasn’t all of the horrific issues from within his own head that he had heaped upon our relationship. Nope, I was and still am angry that he stole from me and my daughter. That he stole from us right before Christmas, and left us with nothing. I am angry that he stole from us, to give to his new girlfriend, and that she was not a good enough of a person to tell him to bring it back.
MOST IMPORTANTLY, what really bothers me, is that I wasn’t strong enough to stand up to him and protect myself, my daughter and my belongings from him. That is what truly bothers me. In all reality, it doesn’t pop in my head too often anymore, as time is healing that wound, but when it does, it’s a good reminder.
There are shitty people in this world, there are men and women who use and abuse people. I have learned from that period of my life, and hopefully I can teach Noodle how to protect herself (in all aspects: physically, financially, living together and not) during a relationship and how to handle these situations as they come up. It’s not foolproof obviously, as no one can protect their children from everything, but I hope that she doesn’t make as many mistakes as I did.
It doesn’t matter what people say, especially the people that have wronged you. I was most certainly still angry a year after being robbed. Two years later, when reminded, I am still angry. It takes time, and you’re allowed to take as much time as you need. It doesn’t matter what you’re getting over, a relationship, a friendship, a crime, a life.. the human mind takes time to heal.
Also just because you’re reminded of a wreck of a human being, maybe a decade later, and get a twinge of anger, doesn’t mean you’re not over it either. It’s okay to recognize that someone was horrible to you and that it hurt you, that’s also human nature.
On a parting note, on the rare times that I am reminded of my stolen things one thing makes me chuckle. My copper wind-chime invokes memories of Jon and Noodle sitting around me waiting for me to open it, both with adorably dorky looks on their faces. My ex-boyfriends current girlfriend told me my wind-chime was her very-favorite thing when I asked for it back. It makes me fuzzy inside to know that when it moves in the wind, she’ll be reminded that it was a gift from her boyfriend and my daughter to me.
Stolen gifts aren’t worth anything.