My thoughts tonight lead me to expectation. Expectation in growth, healing, moving on, trusting, in respect, and in learning. Not so much a problem with these expectations placed on me, but by the people they are placed by. I’ve observed, so many times in my life, adults expecting a child to do something that they, themselves are not willing to do. So many adults are expectant of children to talk respectfully to one another; yet, they talk in dirt and slang amongst themselves. They expect of their children to walk with pride while they walk in shame. My biggest frustration of expectation right now is change. I am expected by so many adults in my life to change and modify, however, only a few of those adults are willing to go through their own changes and modifications as well. This, I am not okay with. Maybe I am in the wrong, but at this moment I don’t care. I have worked for 2 long years, so far, to change and modify my behaviors to that of a healthy child so that I could fulfill my wishes of having a family. I continue to try to change so that someday I can be happy. I don’t do this because I’m expected to, I do it because I want to. However, that expectation is still there and never ceases to grow and hinder me in my progress. There are days when I believe I can’t continue healing, that healing will kill me. On those days that expectation drives into my every muscle and lets me know how much of a disappointment I am to some people. That’s when those tiny voices start singing what a failure I am and how I suck at reaching the expectations placed upon me. That’s when I get so frustrated that I am the only one in my family working to change, to heal, to see life differently. Why is that okay? Because I was a trauma child? Because I don’t belong there? Because I’m not blood? Because I’m the only imperfect one? NO, it’s because I am the only one wanting to make this change and seeing that this change needs to be made, universally. I’m not the only one that needs this change. The human race is in an ever-growing cycle of learning–it never ends. I know in my family that if others were to make the effort to “heal” their own forgotten or untouched wounds, the relationships would move a lot quicker towards healthy and happy rather than the doom and gloom they’re headed to. My progress is slow and I know this, but it is there. Six months ago, I couldn’t have a civil conversation with my adoptive parents because they refused to believe or see the changes I was making in my life. Today, I am able to have a lengthy, civil conversation with both my adoptive mom and dad. Six months ago, I couldn’t stand touch. I hated when ANYONE touched me or even came near me. Today I give, and get, many hugs every day. I am in a place where I can allow touch without so much pain. I like that. I recently received a lengthy email from a family member that was extremely hurtful. This family member is a grown adult with kids and a spouse, however, the email would have led anyone who read it to believe otherwise. I was being called out for “manipulation” that didn’t exist. I was being approached with anger and frustration over something that was miscommunicated. The email had cuss words in it, it was degrading, and accusatory. I’m used to this kind of stuff from my family, both adoptive and birth, but have never known what to do about it because it’s been my normal for so long. All that was needed was a question of clarification…something that has been so greatly expected of me since day one. The only questions given to me were accusatory and blaming. I wanted more than anything to ask what lesson she was trying to teach me or if she was meeting her own expectation. I didn’t, I simply emailed her back and let her know it was a miscommunication and it’s up to her what she takes of it from here on out. If I am expected to not assume but rather clarify, why isn’t she as well? If I am expected to face my concerns with respect rather than anger, why too isn’t she? Because she is my elder? Because she’s lived through childhood? Because she has her own kids and family? I’ve found guidance in clarification mostly through Bailey. Yesterday, Bailey said something and I did the same thing my aunt did. I took it negatively and assumed the worst. It turned into an ugly mess simply because I hadn’t clarified. I hurt Bailey’s heart very badly because of my miscommunication. The email and this miscommunication with Bailey are why expectation is so strong on my mind. For Bailey and my relationship to be successful and healthy, the assumption of negative cannot happen, therefore when the mind goes to negative I am asked to simply ask for clarification; vice versa. This is an expectation I feel is so worth meeting. I now understand why I could never grasp that concept: that clarification can easily avoid an unnecessary conflict. How could I understand when that same expectation wasn’t being met by the ones requiring it of me? They were showing me, instead, what I already knew. I don’t blame them, they knew no different. I know my aunt only wants the best for me, and so does my family, but they don’t know how to meet those expectations at the same time. Now that I do see the difference it is up to me to meet that expectation, the right way. In doing so, not only am I helping myself but helping them as well. I’m so glad that I have so many people in my life to help and go through my process with me rather than sit on the sidelines and wait for me to be better. I’m a blessed little girl with everything I need in front of me. I have the experience of adults sharing in the expectation and I like that. I’ve learned so much from that and hopefully now I can pass that on to my family and others in my life!