Holidays still suck. I miss my family so much, even though they did awful things to me. I’ve still got an amazing sister and younger brother, and I’ve made my own family of a sort. It’s not quite the same though. I miss the small town holidays where the whole community turns out to celebrate. The sweet parades and simple rituals that give a sense of continuity and connection. I love that shit.
The only thing I don’t like about small towns is the isolation, the sense of being trapped with your tormentors. Then being surrounded by closed minded people who torment you more because they only see how you are acting in response to living in a private hell. Mental illness is so much worse when you are surrounded by ignorant, judgmental people. Small towns are often full of them.
I think the very worst part about having mental health issues for so long- the part that always breaks my heart is how people use shunning, bullying, and social exclusion to torment. Everyone needs a family and a community to connect to. It always seems extra evil when I experience that sort of behavior, because it’s a direct threat to survival. If you are alone, vulnerable away from the bulk of the herd, you are easy pickings. So once you’ve been damaged, the perpetrators can easily get rid of you by calling you crazy until you are, and encouraging the shunning. It’s very effective, and it’s too depressing for words. I love my country, but some of our social issues make me want to throw up.
Come to think of it. I’m glad to be free of the blood ties that did the worst damage, and away from the community that enabled it. Ignorance is revolting, but it certainly motivates me to keep learning and growing every single day of my damn life.
Back on Holiday- Robbie Nevil
Independence Day- Martina McBride