It took me a long time to figure a way to live with my parents in a somewhat peaceful state. Mind you, most of the time, it is still strained. But, now you know what I was around. It was 24/7 being bullied and being used for the purposes of being a slave to my parents. The darkness of the household was my reality. I read to escape. I had to follow every single rule my parents had. Regardless of their reasoning. Mind you, most of the time it wasn’t very thought out. But that is not for me to judge.
Now one of these rules was that I wasn’t allowed to have any friends to the house because the house was always a mess. Both of my parents were pack rats, you see. My dad, being a handyman would bring all sorts of junk home, saying he would fix something that had been thrown away and that it would still be good. Everything he has brought home has never been fixed and has gathered a great layer of dust and grime. So you might see a sink on the front porch for no reason.
Unfortunately, this was not great for social development. I ended up become super quiet, reserved, and soft-spoken. I was always afraid that if I spoke to anyone, they would judge me harshly and I would be punished. I still feel that today. In silence, I was able to observe quite a lot of people's behaviors. Most of it is extremely confusing. It is interesting how you think of yourself and then when you see yourself through another's eyes you find what you thought you were doing really isn’t what you are doing.
Watching people and listening without speaking. I learned to silence my mind. Have no thought, no feeling, no emotion, just be. To judge is to have a mind. To listen and observe is to be. But a being without thought is mindless. I had lost my mind.