Mistaken

Wow

Little one

You never got to form a protective coat

You had holes that formed in your ego

Where bad stuff seeped in

So hard to make sense of it all

When it never really belonged to you

Hungry heart beating silently

So difficult

To sustain and nurture

Love

To grow a sense of meaning

And protection

When you were

Left alone one too many times

There was not really any place to turn

And no way really to know

That the feelings you had were real

Seeking something to ease the loneliness and pain

Your soul cried silently

And if you didn’t learn that you had value enough

To be worth someone’s time

Was it any wonder you gave yourself away

So freely and so cheaply

But now all this is changing

Although you cannot change the past

Recognition means

Now you can

Wrap an overcoat of protection and love

Around yourself

Now you are free to express

And give full vent to what you feel inside

And now you see how others are hurting

And damaged too

You will no longer expect

What cannot be

And be so bitterly disappointed again

It was all so much larger and more complex

That you ever could have known

In the child self

For all along you needed adult you

To show up

To hold you

And help you understand

The source of true love

True connection

For that lonely soul inside

Who believed for so long

Things mistaken

False beliefs

False conclusions

That were never really true

All the ways you tried

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I see it now because my heart is clear

All the ways you tried

All the ways you loved

And how hard your young life was

And how little comfort you found

There was much more to you

Than just being my mother

You knew great loneliness

As I have

Yesterday I danced the pain

The pain you could not express

But is my hearts pain

And with me in the dance were those who have passed

As I danced

I remembered deep in my soul

The sorrow of loss

But also the beauty of their presence

Shadow presence of Poppa hovering

Black hat black tie standing in the rain

The lovely one I never knew

And was too young to remember

Feeling only

Ghostly imprints in my soul

Casting shadows of fear over each new relationship

In my heart

In the dance

I felt the love that was lost

And I felt the anger that covered over the pain of knowing

That coming into the family toward the end

Meant I would have less

Less holding

Less comfort

Less connection

Less of the cosy jumper

Instead I lived to see Pluto trample in

And steal everything

In hob nail boots

Until only injury sorrow and emptiness

 Lay around us like wreckage

Leaving those of us who remained

Inconsolable

Barren

Cast into the wilderness

I went numb for so many years

I was the lost soul wandering

Like Lilith forced out into the dark

To find my way

Through a burnt out landscape

Littered with glass shards of sorrow

Feet were cut and bleeding

After frenzied dances

How my soul ached

With things that could never be spoken

And so in time my vision blurred

And my heart became a beast of hurt

Pumping heat and fury

Between the time lostness and tears

So much emptiness and fear

And others feared getting too close to me

In case they were burned

But the burning was all a part of the process

For a heart’s fire that is loved

Mysteriously transforms into something else

When there is enough trust in the dark

Bringing a dawning into life

Of the healing light of tenderness

Birthed from agony

Light that streams down upon me

In the dance

As love rises up

And swirls

So much love

That I fear my entire being will burst with it

And so, at the end

I see all the ways you tried

All the ways you loved

And all the ways that for so many years

I sadly could not see any deeper

Than my own hurt

And so often

Pushed others away

With an anger

That hid so deep within it

A longing for connection and love

Belonging, authenticity and self acceptance

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Wow I found this when I was looking for quotes and images to put on my post on self acceptance.  I find Brene Brown has some incredible insights into acceptance, authenticity and shame but this one hit me to the core.  I have so often I felt as though I didn’t belong as I was trying to fit myself to situations where I felt out of step, but in recent months, and when I have found myself into those same situations being myself, loving myself and not being besieged and assailed by critical inner shaming or invalidating self talk lately I have felt a far greater sense of belonging and I have been able to be more authentic.  That is so powerfully expressed in this quote, I felt the need to share it. Also in those situations when I have been real it has encouraged others to be real and open too. Its such a gift!

Acceptance : healing from the inside

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The single most healing attitude we can hold towards ourselves is one of acceptance.  Even if there are parts of ourselves that we don’t like or that we struggle with, is there some way we can learn to love and accept these parts of us and understand where they come from and perhaps even learn to look deeper into where self critical views came from?

Self rejection seems to be such a huge part of our culture.  It becomes even more prevalent if we were raised in an environment or home where there was neglect or invalidation abuse.  In this case self rejection can become a huge part of our inner landscape, not really loving and accepting ourselves for who we truly are means that self condemnation and low self esteem become an habitual way of life.  The inner critic forms inside of us making feelings guilt, shame and powerlessness central issues we struggle with and we may try to hide these feelings from ourselves and others or silence then with addictions.

Add to this the complication of the fact that if as a child difficult things occurred which may have not been our fault we may have mistakenly come to believe that something we did played a part, for example the early death of a parent, illness in a sibling, abuse or chronic rejection.   Well into adulthood we may go on struggling with the critical voice inside of us or deeply unconscious feelings of guilt that cause all kinds of probelms.  We may also begin to learn to turn that critical voice outwards.  We come to believe in negative expectations.  If we feel we are not good enough we won’t learn to set appropriate boundaries against abuse or we may go on fearing rejection when there is actually no need to maintain such a fear.  We then learn to live from a self fulfilling prophecy which just brings more of the same to us.

The way out of such a dilemma is the practice of self acceptance, self care and love.  When we have distressing critical attacks we can learn to address the critical voice and the shame it may be trying to pass onto us in a loving way.  We don’t even have to argue, we can agree with the critic that we are messy or absent minded or careless but recognise that such traits have nothing to do with our self worth or lovability.  As human beings we don’t need to be ‘perfect’ to be loved, we should not have to ‘earn’ love by forcing ourselves into shapes others would like us to assume or by hiding who we really are deep inside, even if we are deeply emotional and deeply hurt or angry.  All such feelings really are acceptable, but he hard truth is that in childhood and even well into adult hood we may have been around those who struggled to accept such feelings and so we learned to internalise a similar lack of acceptance.

We can also, as we grow in critical self insight and self acceptance, learn that we cannot always expect a perfect love from those around us, who in being human are not perfect either.   I struggle at times when I hear of those who suffered some neglect in childhood saying they are going ‘no contact’ with parents.  Often it is apparent the parent has suffered deep wounds, wounds they may have passed on, and I do understand if the abuse is bad the person would not want a lot of contact.  But at the same time it is true that human beings suffer in all kinds of different ways in the course of their upbringing and so often pass this suffering onwards.

When we choose to undertake a journey of inner healing we are on a course to open up to this so called ‘shadow’ material or dark side in ourselves and in others.   We are on a journey to explore all the blockages of separation, fear and guilt as well as shame that have kept us from the experience of love, we are also being called on a journey of forgiveness.  We don’t ever have to like what happened to us, forgiving does not mean we ever say that what happened to us is okay, but forgiveness is the conscious choice we make at one critical stage in our healing process when we get to see the cost of pain passed on over years, ages or generations and resent into and through our own emotional systems and in relationships and see with absolute clarity that the cost of holding onto it is too great a price to pay and solves nothing.

Working through our anger may take years.  We find it hard to let down that steely defence which in keeping us protected blocks us from truly expressing the deeper pain or sadness of the hurt we feel, grieving and mourning in order to pass through the process, releasing from deep within our cell tissue traumas that hurt.  We may never have the hurt, or anger or sadness validated by the other person. In order for many o fus to heal we most certainly initially need to seek validation from someone but most importantly in time we must learn to find it from deep within our selves and our own souls for this is where our true healing lies.

Once our reality is validated from inside it becomes so much easier to love ourselves, to know that we were always worthy of protection and care but that also life is not perfect and due to this we as humans can and do suffer all kinds of hurt and abuse.  We may think “this should never have happened to me” but the truth is it has.  Hate it as we must we have to deal with the consequences and further we have to learn how to live a peaceful and loving life from within that place in order that we don’t go on to re-enact the hurt upon ourselves or others over and over and over again.

Most certainly it helps to have a champion or companion on this journey.  In my own life the unconditional loving presence of my therapist Katina has meant so much to me.  I have and do struggle with such self criticism at times, mostly over things that were so far outside of my control, with Katina I get a reality check as to where I am being too hard on myself and I see also where others can at times be hard on me and I see that I can stand up for my truth in the face of that.  I had an incident yesterday where I had to do that with someone who was a bit of a bully and was trying to criticise me in a joking way.   I didn’t have to carry the anger of it as I took the steps to stand up for myself at the time.  In years past his criticism could have launched me into a negative spiral for some days.

Self love, self care, self compassion and self acceptance are such critical issues on our healing journey from neglect, emotional abandonment and any other kind of trauma or abuse.  These are the healing balm to counter the voices and forces of self condemnation and self rejection that we may have internalised while growing up in dysfunctional environments and societies full of shame based attitudes which can leave such a destructive lasting legacy and impact recycling for years.  Without them it is hardly possible to heal and grow as we so need to.

 

Rejection sensitivity : some insights

As humans, we have a fundamental need to belong and to maintain close bonds with others. Anything that threatens this need can set off psychological alarm bells, prompting us to do whatever we can to prevent rejection from occurring or to save face if it does. But for some people, this alarm system is hypersensitive, […]

via How Rejection Sensitivity Derails Relationships — PushUP24

The 5 Defense Mechanisms that Can Sabotage Your Relationship

A brilliant window into defense mechanisms. How honest can we be in facing our dark side?

PushUP24

Everyone uses defense mechanisms, and if you believe Freud, everyone has to in order to avoid staring in the face of our worst anxieties. Even if you don’t believe Freud, it’s hard to argue with the position that we all occasionally rely on such common forms of managing our most difficult feelings by pushing them out of awareness. In close relationships, where your deepest emotions are often aroused, it’s even more likely that you’ll rely on your defenses to help you manage those emotions. As it turns out, some of the most common defense mechanisms may make you even more anxious by getting in the way of your relationship happiness. A new paper by Wei Zhang and Ben-yu Guo (2017), of Nanjing China’s Normal University suggests which defense mechanisms are worst, and by extension, how to turn them from maladaptive to adaptive.

According to Zhang and Guo, researchers have moved…

View original post 961 more words

Stay strong : keep on fighting

Fire

I would never have imagined in my wildest dreams I would title a post keep on fighting but I am aware more and more lately how strong positive powerful (true power grounded in wisdom and authenticity) is and how much we suffer without it.

My infected tooth is causing me all kinds of physical problems and my prosthodontist who has made my new denture cannot take it out for 3 months.  I am not prepared to go through this much pain and discomfort for 3 months so today I made the decision I will find someone else to take the tooth out and even if I have to go through life for the next few months without 3 front teeth once they cut the temporary bridge away I will have to do it.  I am sick of having to swallow shit when something I need needs to be done cant be done and is adversely affecting my health, not to take action is not self care in this situation.

When I get a powerful assertive impulse like this something in my AA training arks up and tells me I am not ‘letting go and letting God’ not accepting the situation.  How am I supposed to accept a situation that is leading me to bad health, when there may be an option to go another way and get the thing sorted.   There simply is a time to fight.

In my life I think one of my major problems has been that I can be too passive.  When I need to assert myself or stick up for something I don’t do it.  I have got better at this lately but there are still areas where I just suck up things that are hurtful and put up with difficult things.  I may not be able to change certain things but there at times when action is called for.  Over the past week ever since I got that news from the prosthodontist I have been in a very dark and negative place with so much anger and fury, frustration, resentment and rage.  I passed through me yesterday and I have felt clearer and cleaner ever since about essential truths.  I had several dreams where fires were raging on household items over the past two nights.  I managed to put them out.  In another dream I was stuck up high on a wall and it was dangerous to come down to the ground but finally I made it.

I am conscious I need to earth myself in reality.  There are some harsh truths I am having to accept and I am also having to see the part I played in certain events where others acted hurtfully towards me.  I am also seeing where childhood pain and hurt kept me paralysed in a space for years where it was impossible to move forward.  I was with a very strong partner for 4 years who could be a bit emotionally abusive but what I am seeing more and more lately is that he carried for me a strong aspect of my own shadow.  He was able to be very self assertive, know what his needs were and go for them regardless of how that affected anyone else and lately I am seeing that is not what I have done.  I have been the ‘nice’ girl and possibly an inverted narcissist myself in that I have been trying to get my own needs met by meeting the needs of others, not on any conscious level, but on a deeply subconscious one, thinking that if I am only ‘nice’ such niceness will be returned which is rarely the case.

I was googling some anger quotes for a blog I wrote the other day and I came across one that said how anger is due to frustrated expectations.  It seems that if I want to work with my anger issues I have to become more aware of what I am expecting consciously or unconsciously and see how realistic that expectation is.  In short order its about emotional and spiritual maturity.   And if needs and expectations are being frustrated consistently I may need to change my approach or look for another way to get them met, recognising at the same time just what I am powerless over.

And I need to take positive action towards things that are good for me, rather than sitting around ruminating on what hurts me over and over again.  I do believe a certain amount of rumination is helpful, we need to get to the bottom of things and that can require a load of introspection.  When I posted a post the other day with a video on overthinking part of me baulked afterwards because at times we do need to use our minds, but there is also a time when over thinking can become counterproductive if difficult, negative or anxiety producing thoughts are being run over and over and over again.  And I am sure there is a link between this and anxiety attacks, with all the over thinking we may also not be truly feeling the reality that we need to feel in order to burst free.

It seems to me that in this complex and at times deeply confusing, heart breaking and disturbing modern world we need a strong inner fire or flame to sustain us inwardly.  When our fire is put out or stolen from us in childhood through some kind of trauma or abuse we can spend years in an icy wilderness trying to draw close to the fire of others, most especially abusive people who burn and dissolve us to a pile of ashes or a puddle of water.  Yet even these are elements we can work with to regain our fire and flow.  We just need the right help and the ability to turn around and light our own fire and champion our own vital inner child or inner flame.   We need to find the ability to fight when we need to and the wisdom to surrender or let go, too when that is what is called for.  But often the later comes after a time in which we have struggled to a point where at times we have felt almost defeated by life and yet somehow in some way that defeat ends up becoming just a huge step on the way to finding and building our inner strength.

So today, even though it is freezing and foggy, and my frozen fingers are like ice as I type and so often missing the keys, I will go forward in my day finding the light, seeking the warmth, taking the actions steps that I need to take to take care of me.