It's sad the way some people react to power, imagined or otherwise. It can be a heady thing, I know, but to allow it to turn you into a beast and, if others perceive you have power, make those around you cringe every time you open your mouth that's not okay.
Today I am going to my daughter's volleyball game. I love watching her play. I love doing something where I can support her. Today I feel strong, but inside I still cringe. I find myself wondering if something will happen while I'm there that will hurt me all over again. Will people recognize me? If they do, will they talk to me or ignore me? If they talk to me (which happened on Tuesday) is it because they have no idea who I am, or because they do know who I am?
And, the biggest question of all, will he behave himself? Last year, at one of my daughter's volleyball games, her dad chose to raise his voice at me and stuck his finger, literally, in my face for saying hi and giving hugs and kisses to my boys through the bars of the top area they were sitting in. At the time, I wasn't strong enough to defend myself and I didn't understand the totally ingrained fear reaction I had towards him. The fear of saying the wrong thing and making the "scolding" worse.
Today, I still only understand now that it is just that - an ingrained reaction. I don't remember enough of our relationship to understand where it comes from. However, today I am strong. Today I will say hi to my boys if they are there without fear, because today I know what needs to be said if he does it again. "Yes, there is an order for supervised visitation. It is not a PPO!! Not the same thing. It is not an order saying I can't see my kids in a public venue. And it certainly doesn't mean that I need your permission to go where I want to go when I want to go there. You no longer control me. I know you can't stand that, just based on your behavior, but get over it already."
Of course, I say that now. Right now I'm sitting safely on my balcony with my computer in my lap. Once I'm there, instinct will most likely take over and I'll cower and cringe. I pray someday I'll be stronger. But, I also pray that when I am, I will never react to that power the way some people react to power over others.
"Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely." - John Emerich Edward Dalberg