I posted this, then took it down. I then went off line and meditated. I thought about my Mum and her suffering and how her past multigenerational trauma affected all of us. I started to cry. I realised true wisdom essentially comes with forgiveness as it allows us to see deeper than just ego centred thinking mind. We are part of something far far bigger playing out than so many of us realise. My own awareness continually morphs into larger dimensions. I go back forward, in out, higher lower, above beneath, looking upon things from inside out and then outside in, I see my perspective and then consider yours and perhaps consciousness is essentially so fluid in this way. That said I then post this and may later want to take it down again!
I awoke with so much travelling around my mind this morning. My brother’s visit stirred up so much about the past, he is only ever here for a really short time, we have to slot into his small windows of opportunity between business meetings as a family to have some time with him and then during his visit yesterday he dropped a clanger on Mum, telling her how hard she was on Dad over many years. It’s probably true, Mum carried multigenerational survivor trauma of being the adult great grandchild of a pretty heavy alcoholic and she used to be quite anxious and stressed, with the hardwired conditioning to make things more perfect than perfect and control any messy chaos inner or outer that may have served as a too painful reminder of hidden emotional difficulties, traumas and influences unspoken.
Even though she never met her great grandfather as his grand daughter left New Zealand with my grandmother (Mum’s mum) some time in the 1910s the impact of the struggle to survive against difficulties and separation continued on and has had complex emotional ripple affects right down to today. All three of us, myself, and my two sisters have been divorced, every single one of us left by our partners. Two of my sisters have had bi polar diagnoses and I have struggled with alcoholism and other adult child issues.
Last night at dinner my Mum was sharing her grief over all of this trauma as well as her grief over what my brother had said off the cuff about her and Dad. Mum is on fairly heavy pain meds at the moment after a fractured pelvis and while I know there is truth in what my brother said, he doesn’t know the entire story and nor did he think of or mention the pressure I know he put my father through in the final years of his life after my older sister underwent her stroke, breakdown and abandonment trauma all of which contributed to his stomach cancer along with too much rich food and alcohol.
The other thing that came up last night was that Mum owned the pressure she and my brother put on my father to move from a little house we all lived in as an extended family when I was young. Dad didn’t want to move, he wasn’t sure we could afford it. This was the ‘cosy jumper’ house and I cried and cried and cried as a youngster when we moved from it. What came up this morning was a realisation of the dilemma to move to something better saga of past months that has all played out with Venus retrograde.
I realised mid way through that Dad had the Venus Chiron Pluto T-square which speaks of pressure from bigger outside wills on your own value system and the wounding of that and the exact degrees of this were triggered over that time. I was thinking this morning of how subconscious things from the past can affect us in ways we don’t even realise at the time. And sadly I am still in many ways a prisoner of my own lonely childhood at the age of 54, I haven’t got that far from my family, two major relationships have broken up for me in sobriety and now I am alone again. Its not a complete tragedy the last thing I want to come across as, is a victim, but at times it gets lonely and sad.
What I realised today was how for so many years I have just sat around in a passive state for a lot of the time with all this loneliness kicking around in side but even that is judgemental as my trust was in many ways broken by trauma. The deeper truth is that it is a long journey of self discovery taken over a very harsh rocky landscape to realise and surrender old defences. Only after you have gained true awareness can you actually do something about wounds to self. In truth there was so much affecting me I just did not realise was affecting me so deeply really until now. My strong connection to my family and the trauma of the years 1979 – 1986 has plagued me in some way well into my sobriety journey which began in 1996, but why wouldn’t it, since that is the nature of trauma?
I realised yesterday that I am not born to be entirely alone. While there are those on the so called spiritual path that say your emptiness cannot be filled from outside, I am not so sure that that is entirely true. We actually do need positive, loving connections with us to sustain us. We do need recognition for what we have suffered, most importantly from ourselves. No man or woman is truly an island, we don’t get sick in isolation, most of our wounding and descent into addiction is a result of early trauma or attachment trauma, we are wired to connect to something or someone and if there is no some one we look for something. The trick is to fill our needs in a healthy rather than an unhealthy way.
In my own life I know I was not helped by those in recovery who had not really healed their own deep attachment trauma who told me I needed to find God alone and could only ever totally rely on a higher power. I know to truly recover we do need a positive loving relationships with a source of deeper substance call it higher self or higher power but we also do need other loving relationships, we just have to be careful we don’t burden earthly human relationships with a huge fund of unmet emotional and spiritual needs that we carry due to our past that may be too much for one human person to really carry or heal for us.
This morning I found myself getting a bit frustrated with my therapist when I was trying to discuss what happened over the past day with her. She wasn’t saying much and there was a huge empty void space of silence through out most of the time I wasn’t talking. I felt then how it was to be so small and young and lost in my family with no one much there to see me or hear me or notice me or contain my feelings, nor give me guidance, I was always it seems foundering alone. That is why I became a good student and an avid reader I was always looking for wisdom somewhere. And when the pain of my sister’s trauma struck at home alone on the nights Mum and Dad went to sit by her bedside while she hovered in a liminal state of coma trauma I turned to the cask of red wine on top of the fridge.
Now even after many years in sobriety I need to notice when I turn to things that cannot really give me the comfort I crave. I can use coffee or other sweet food in this way at times, most especially at times of the day or life that are triggers of past loneliness, memory or pain for me. Blogging is a positive thing I can do, sitting and tuning into myself and my inner child and deeper feelings about what may be being triggered for me is also important.
I guess over time I am learning more and more. I am noticing more and more. I then get to see where I may be making mistakes or missing the mark and get to make adjustments to try and bring myself on a healthier track emotionally and physically.
Today its bleak cold and overcast, and so I will need to move towards connection and warmth. I think I will also start going back to some group meetings as I need to be connecting more with people in recovery who operate and look at things on a deeper level, and while blogging does help its not as good at times as actually being able to connect to warm bodies face to face.
The trauma history in my family is not going away. It doesn’t really even matter who was ‘to blame’ anymore, as I feel the real important thing is that we learn to live peacefully today and work together to connect and give understanding for mistakes that may have happened in the past due to other’s wounds and ignorance. That said the power of apology and the deeper recognition of where wounds have played out helps us better than defences or denial to ground into emotional truth. We often face defences and denial when we try to confront a painful family of origin and its issues. When we do, we can only show compassion and work to keep close to our truth and set our boundaries where they are needed in order to nourish our deeper emotional and spiritual life. This is what I feel I am have been trying to do, sometimes I succeed, sometimes I fail. Sometimes I float around in confusion, and at other times a spark of understanding will appear from behind clouds obscure, that I guess is at heart the ongoing nature of growth in awareness in life and recovery.