I carry guilt around like it is my job. And I do not know how not to. I don't have the typical "my parents got divorced because of me guilt." Nope, my father caused that divorce all on his own. But the fact that my mom had to continue to deal with him for years and years because of me makes me feel guilty. After all the things he said and did to her she should have been able to have a clean break and start fresh. I have this memory of my mom and my father fighting in the living room on Osceola Street, and my mom had my sister in her arms and my father had be and it was this big battle. I have no clue what it was about, but it is a memory that haunts me often. And I want my mom to know I never wanted to be in my father's arms. I always wanted to be with her. But I could never make my sister go to him. It was just easier to go to him and pretend like it was what I wanted because it kept the (or at least some) peace. And there are so many times when I wanted to tell my mom, "of course I want you, of course I choose you" but I was too little to explain. I was too young to put into words what I was doing, I just knew it was what I had to do. And I kept things from my mom, not really secrets but I never told her how when my father picked us up for his nights that we never went to dinner. We just rode around in the car, Kelsey and I buckled into the front seat together while he screamed at us for hours and hours. Kelsey probably had no clue what was going on, and wouldn't have even known how to explain to my mom, and I just kept my mouth shut because I was scared of my father. But I carry around the guilt that I should have told someone, and then Kelsey wouldn't have had to go through that. I had a special moment with my mom last weekend and she probably doesn't even know it. We were talking about Bob and some shirt that didn't fit him and she told me that his lack of caring about dressing nicely was one of the things that attracted her to him because it was so different from my father. And though I have had a week to think about that comment, and I am the queen of over analyzing things, I do not know why it meant so much to me that she shared that. Maybe it was the reminder that she did get away from my father and found someone who makes her happy. I know that even when I was little wearing leggings instead of jeans was such a big deal to me. And to other people it sounds so silly, but my mom and my sister get it. I have done to many things to distance myself from my father, and all of those things are accomplishments that make me feel good. So maybe mom saying she found a man who didn't care if they wore sweatpants and not jeans was a little bubble in my head saying she has done things to distance herself from my father and maybe I can let just a little bit of that guilt off my shoulders. I carry guilt around for getting arrested. I carry guilt around that maybe I wasn't the best sister for Kelsey and it might contribute to some of her issues today. I carry guilt for months if I even mess up a little at work. Here is a good one, a few years back my mom ordered some ugg boots from an online website because I had told her how easy it was to order things online and when the boots came and she though they were rip offs I cried and cried because I felt like she had been cheated and it was my fault. I carry guilt around for the way Kelsey treats Bob sometimes. She obviously doesn't have to have the same relationship with him that I do, but when she is not thankful for everything that he has done for us I feel guilty. My mom is at a point in her life where she is letting go of things she cannot control. I certainly admire that, but I know that I cannot, at least not at this time in my life, just let things breeze by me. I grab onto and carry around these thoughts in my head and it is exhausting at times. All in all, I don't regret my life because I think it is made me into the social worker I am today, but I wish I could take away any pain that my mom and sister felt. I am not a violent person, I don't even think I believe in the death penalty, yet I would kill my father. Or at least wish him dead. Or be okay with him being dead. I should probably carry some guilt around for those thoughts too..