Coffee date


If we met for coffee and a catch up, I’d plan it for an afternoon after work and after arriving, look through the wine list.

You’d suggest a crisp wine that I’ll order a glass of.  We’d talk about the weather and how hot it was over the weekend.  We’d visited Langebaan on Saturday and enjoyed breakfast at one of our favourite restaurants up the West Coast.  Sunday we did some gardening and then went to gym.

We’d chat about our festive season and I’d tell you that we had a great time in Hermanus celebrating our anniversary and Christmas.

I’d tell you that I am excited about my word for the year which is Adventure.  My word last year was Release and it took almost the whole year to actually put it into practice.  As our drinks arrives I’d add ice to my glass and tell you that it isn’t easy when some family members hurt one and it is difficult to ‘let it go’ because ones family is supposed to love you unconditionally.  And it is not easy when you see your friends and how amazingly they get on with their family and you cannot help but compare to the situation with your own.

If we met for drinks, I’d tell you that I couldn’t have done more last year.  The cost and time spent travelling to see my family was quite big.  Visiting was solely the responsibility of hubby and I and this was not fair (we didn’t move – they did).  That after everything it wasn’t enough to simply be kept in the loop regarding health issues and hospital visits.

That the situation sucks.

And I had to release.  For my own sanity.

When you’ve grown up constantly being made to feel like less, it leaves a wound.  And as an adult, trying to talk about that hurt – trying to express how it felt over the years (to be the family member who was never good enough but at the same time had tons of expectations and pressure put on her) just rubs salt into it.  Because I have people in my life who would rather get the last word or maintain they are 100% right and I’m always wrong, than try for a second to see things from my side.

So I released my expectations for the last time and while I’m polite and civil when wishing them for Christmas and New Year it is radio silence since.  And it will continue.

And I’m fine with that.

Because I have so many amazing people in my life who love me for me and I simply cannot spend one more second wasted wondering why some family are hellbent on treating me like crap (and then resenting me for being upset).  I cannot win with them and am done trying!

If we met for drinks, we’d chat about work (so busy at the moment) and travel plans for the year (very excited to visit somewhere new later this year).

We’d say our goodbyes and agree to meet again soon.

Next time, you choose the place.



20 thoughts on “Coffee date

  1. Kimberly says:

    Release is such a powerful word. I struggle with that word a lot and I am proud of you for tackling it. I completely understand how you compare yours to theirs because I do that so much. I’m not saying that your family is dysfunctional when I say this but mine is 100% legitimately dysfunctional and I find myself scratching my head wondering why can’t we be like them. IT’s hard to let go of what could be and just sit in the fact that this is it. That I cannot change other people. I can only change me.
    I hope that your new word will take your feet to places that you’ve never been to before and will open your eyes to wondrous beauty. You deserve it. xoxox


    • says:

      It is a really powerful word and I didn’t actually realise how much I hang onto until last year.
      It is so difficult to let go of what is and stop wondering why it cannot be different. I’m sorry you have experienced it too – it hurts big time.
      I learnt last year that it is okay to be sad that my family and I are not close and to basically grieve the loss of what could be. It has been so difficult being the invisible relative – I just don’t have it in me to keep pretending it is ok. I’ve had to continually tell myself “it is what it is” because they won’t change, see things from my perspective or ever admit to being wrong in any way.
      Thank you for your kind words xoxo.


  2. Lauren Becker says:

    I’m glad that 2018 finally brought some release. I don’t understand why some families constantly hurt each other, and I hate that you’ve been made to feel like whatever you do isn’t enough. I’m glad you are going to try and focus on the people in your life that truly love you and don’t expect anything from you. Hopefully that will lead to many adventures and a happy new year.



    • says:

      Thank you Lauren – it has been a process because I’ve tried for years to get a shred of time and respect that is given effortlessly to everyone else in their lives. 35 years old and still waiting!

      I constantly need to remind myself that the situation won’t change and I need to make the effort to be mindful and appreciate the good in my life.


  3. Beth says:

    I love that your word is adventure for this coming year! It’s absolutely perfect for you. I always love reading about your travels and experiences, so I am excited to see what 2019 brings you! And I love meeting over a glass of wine!


  4. Bella Easterbrook says:

    A glass of wine sounds lovely, I haven’t had a whole glass for over a year (being pregnant and now breastfeeding)! I’m sorry to hear your problems with family relationships. That’s such a hard thing to deal with, but sometimes releasing is the best thing to do. I’ve heard that the climate in South Africa is similar to Australia, so I hope you’re able to keep cool 🙂


    • says:

      I think what makes it easier to let go is that I’ve genuinely tried for so long and my family’s mindset has always been that they are right and I’m wrong. I can look back and honestly say I couldn’t have done more last year.

      Yes I’ve heard that our climates are similar as well. I’m loving summer at the moment – the days haven’t been TOO warm.


  5. Charlotte says:

    I would love to visit you at this place for coffee but really I want to see the wine list and I love the idea of ordering something crisp and refreshing. Oh, sweetheart. That is so difficult when you have people in your life who suck the life force out of you… didn’t you call them energy vampires once? That has stuck with me and I think it describes perfectly what some people are capable of doing. Focus on doing the things that bring you the most joy—take your adventures to new and unexpected heights, and enjoy the journey. A new year always fills us with so much hope, eh? Always sending so much love.


    • says:

      Thanks Charlotte – I’ve spent so much time analyzing the situation and wondering what I could have done differently. I couldn’t have done more and still never know the truth about their health issues. It saps the energy out of one constantly worrying about family that cannot take a few minutes to one in the loop. It has been the trend my whole life so it isn’t new and I’ve talked about it many times over the years.

      I’m looking forward to living out this years word of Adventure and making the most of the new year with new hope and optimism. xoxo

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Lecy | A Simpler Grace says:

    Yes, I would totally be in favor of swapping the coffee for some wine! I am very excited about your word for the year and can’t wait to see the adventures you embark on in 2019. I think it’s going to be a great year. I’m so glad you were able to join the date this month, Anthea! ❤


  7. San says:

    I am so sorry that you’re having such a difficult situation with your family (I know you’re not the only one and it breaks my heart)…. but I think it’s good and healthy to release and take a step back, even if it’s hard.


  8. Linds says:

    Sometimes, although unfortunate as it may be, we need to distance ourselves from family (and friends) because it just isn’t worth the stress and energy drain. I had to do that early on with Jeff’s mom and thank god it got better. Totally different situation of course but similar in having to put up boundaries for your own well being.

    I love you word for 2019! 🙂


    • says:

      Boundaries are so important – just not easy to put them up with family at times. Last year was the final straw and probably the push I needed to see that things will never change. I’m the invisible family member and always will be. Their choice – getting the last word has always been a priority. Walking away is now mine.

      I’m so glad that things got better with you and Jeff’s mom – it must have made a huge difference to you both (and to Jeff too).


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