Sometimes I am realising I just don’t really know what is going on with me. I think I know. I can spend a lot of time in thinking about the said thing and come up with conclusions and/or so called answers or responses, only to find after this occurs a feeling comes up from nowhere like a wave to blind side me, upturning the carefully constructed world of my thoughts which like a house of cards tumble down or become all wet and soggy in the deluge.
I just went to get a take away coffee on the way home from the park after having a lunch date cancelled and read this interpretation of an upcoming transit: In few days Mercury, the sign of thinking, perception and communication will come into a square (challenging aspect to do with cutting away and decisions) with the outer planet, Neptune which is now stationing forward. The interpretation made was that when this occurs we may get insight into illusions which have been a source of confusion for us for some time.
I immediately ran this through my thinking mind. Not a few minutes earlier I had been in floods of tears, my Mum and I decided to pull the plug on a trip to travel north to see my now dead sister’s sons in a few weeks time. I feel it was the right decision but it brought up a lot of grief and sadness as I know they were looking forward to it and I hate not honouring commitments I made. Some of my inner dialogue went like this (and a lunch date was cancelled at the same time) “Here we go, this ends with you all alone again”, echoes imprints flooding followed.
At the time I was also listening to a sad song from my early teenage years. I was drawn back as I often am when listening to this song to the living room in our big house where I would sit after school perched in front the turntable listening to my favourite records alone. Longings for my big sister rose up then, memories of the separations and divisions and moves and traumas that led to severings from a cosy place of comfort.
I was reminded that for so many years I was without a true home, a place to rest and find shelter with others, often cast out for feeling as I did. I also got the subtle message many times that my pain or sadness or exuberance was too much. Often things occurred that led me to be whipped away and end up all alone. In these alone times and spaces I would wander watching others happily sharing time together and wonder why I could never find that togetherness place .
After I drove home and parked the car I had had the thought of how I often struggle to find a place of belonging with others. I wanted to write a blog on it. Then I logged on to find a comment I had made on another blog written about the dichotomy between thinking and feeling, I got a bit diverted starting my blog on this but the deeper insight happening for and to me in the midst of writing this is that being alone and not belonging ‘out there’ isn’t the worst thing that can happen if I am at home with me in touch with my deeper feelings and thoughts. This is where I feel like I belong. At home with myself.
And as sad as it was to have these alone realisations today I am beginning to see that maybe I shouldn’t fight against this pattern. I can have the thoughts then let the hidden feelings flow up and out and in time they will pass and I will feel freer. Maybe I should just surrender and keep on finding the comfort that deep solitude and aloneness can bring, for within this place of aloneness now it is true that I am beginning to feel a much deeper sense of connection with myself and with life energy. I also feel connected to the souls of those I love or have loved.
In my life I feel I have spent a lot of my life looking out there for a place to ‘fit’ but sooner or later I find I don’t ‘fit’ and the price of remaining is to cut myself to ‘fit’ what others have told me I must be to belong there. And so I have spent years trying to change my shape or being left in the end because amidst the pretence that I had put on (and was not totally aware of, at the time) others glimpsed the fact I wasn’t truly being real and when my real self popped through it didn’t suit or fit in or my beingness outraged them in some way.
I have only just recently learned that in fact I have another choice, when the signs appear that I don’t fit in I could just pack up my things and leave instead of turning myself inside out to fit in. Or, instead of being so scared of being left or abandoned I could just be my real self and if others want to leave, let them go.
I am not entirely sure what this has to do with insight in the confusion of illusions but I am sensing that the illusion may lie in thinking that if I just negate myself and try to fit in I will feel like I belong when I don’t. If I try to push through with plans I have made when it becomes apparent that is not the best thing to do, I am better to be honest and tell others I can’t do it. This doesn’t come easily for me as I am a chronic people pleaser. I also sense others wounds and want to be there to help. This has got me in a lot of trouble due to the fact that I now see I have tried to take on responsibility for things, feelings, pain in my family that actually had nothing to do with me. I was in my own pain and had my own deep needs that could never be understood, accepted or realise in my family of origin. I really should have been finding ways to deal with and address these but I just could not as my focus was so firmly planted outside myself on others. It really is a backwards, co-dependent way to live.
At the moment I feel the lesson I am being given is to put my focus within. When I try to do it part of me argues I am being narcissistic, and that part of me implies that narcissism is absolutely a bad thing, but it’s not. Healthy narcissism is actually a form of maturity. It recognises I have needs that if not fulfilled cause me depression and pain. Sacrificing my own needs as I was conditioned to do by my Catholic education and even in 12th step fellowships and seeing any personal desire as selfish is not at all healthy and it doesn’t really serve anyone.
And this brings me back to the beginning of what I was trying to express earlier. Often my mind tells me things that have nothing to do with truth or reality. My mind can and does come up with things that are illusions at times. Illusions like, I am responsible for others pain, if I just try harder it will work out, I should think of others first, not doing so is selfish or shows I am not a ‘good’ person. All illusions.
I posted a blog by Courage Coaching the other day entitled “You are not a failure.” It seems that so many of us live the illusion that we have failed in some way when really we have just being trying to find and live a path that is true for us. We may set ourselves up to win or achieve things that aren’t meant for us or suited for us, we may have started life without the necessary nurturing to embrace and live so called “success”.
And it seems to me that the true failure lies in not loving, caring for, accepting and supporting ourselves or gaining deeper insight into the real causes we struggle as we do. The true failure lies in believing lies that damaging inner voices say, things like “you aren’t good enough”, “you don’t belong”, “you are a failure”. What might it take to give up these illusions? What might it take to realise that we are okay as we are despite all our so called mistakes or flaws? What might it mean to go a bit damn easier on ourselves?
The fact I cannot make it north in a few weeks doesn’t show I failed. It won’t kill or damage anyone. I feel really sad about it on one level, the level that shows the love I feel for family and the care and support I want to show. But at the same time at the moment I need to centre in my own life, care for my own being, nourish my emerging self. Because if I don’t take care of myself first, I really don’t have much to give and it is only from a place of fullness that I can give anything of meaning or value to anyone else.
I have also accepted that I am but a mere speck here in the universe, and although I may have thought I was omnipotent in the past, I must only focus on the small sphere of influence I actually have control over.