I am so grateful for the days when that ray of metaphorical sunshine peaks out from behind the clouds in my soul. I have often noticed on the path of healing that after a very intense day when I am prone to attacks from the inner critic and really struggling to cope in the context of life with past wounds, a positive day can follow if I did the best to work thorugh what was asked of me on the bad day. I don’t know if I am expressing this well but today I had a lovely morning walk with Jasper along the path by the canal and we then sat in the sun while I read a book, then came home and had scrambled eggs. The house and garden that was bugging the hell out of me on Friday and Saturday and which I often project all my abandonment onto was a source of pain and frustration over the past days. I stuggled to see the good in the ‘mess’ which is really just a way of framing things that comes out of being raised in a perfectionistic environment where everything had to be clean and working in good order. But to an extreme degree. Anyway I got stuck into it over the past days so I could light a candle rather than complain about the darkness.
I was talking about this issue with my sister yesterday, she struggles in the same way. We both often saw our Mum fly into a rage when things got in a mess and there was little ‘down’, goof off or play time growing up. Life was all about duty, work and serious business. Now I understand my Mum’s childhood and the deep grief and abandonment wound this kind of behaviour covers over I feel more understanding. I see the triggers and know my own struggles come from a log way back. This is when I apply AA slogans such as How Important Is It and Easy Does It, these were not responses I learned growing up.
Anyway today I am actually Happy. Hand clap and high five. I feel more at peace. I am grateful. I know tomorrow my attitude could change again but it pays to remember that even when dark clouds are around a lot there is sunshine somewhere and the dark stormy days really make me appreciate the sunny ones. It also helps me to see where burdens that I have inherited dont belong to me.
I haven’t got very far with Mark Wolynn’s book on family trauma and breaking the cycle since Wednesday but the chapter I am about to get into is about core things we say to ourselves or fear we carry inside that stems from a long way back or past experiences of feeling alone, abandoned or rejected. I know my fear is that if things descend into chaos or become too ‘out of control’ disaster will fall, someone will be destroyed, or I will cease to exist. It isn’t rational thinking but it has deep roots not only in the past traumas I witnessed but the inherited ones in our family that fell into silence.
Mark advises learning to listen to the core stories or things we tell ourselves and coming to understand how these may dominate us so that we can get out from under them. I am looking forward to pressing on with the next chapter ‘The Core Complaint’. From understanding that core complaint he helps people he works with to understand core sentences they use that keep them stuck, things such as “I’m going to die”, or “I’ll go crazy”. His work involves looking at key triggers from the past that help us to understand where such fears come from, often they come from something a parent or grand parent went through which they may not have spoken about or addressed with us. Once we can get out from under these fears and traumas, happiness becomes more of a possibility in our lives. We can become more conscious and less subject to re-enactments not only from our personal but also from our collective or ancestral past.