Freedom isn’t about rejection, expulsion or grasping. When we’re no longer participating, we are on the path to freedom.
After meeting up with him yesterday for the first time in nearly 2 months, I realised that what has been going on in my head may not have reflected reality. What an epiphany! The anger, jealousy, resentment, and even some of the disbelief that I have felt intermittently since parting from him was, curiously enough, not present when I was with him yesterday. And the images I had conjured up in my head about him and his life “without me” somehow seemed flawed; perhaps even fanciful. I realised, with some dismay (to be treated gently!) that I may have been both protector and torturer recently.
I am fully responsible for how I ride the waves of life. It is not about self-blame when I’m knocked off my board and struggle to catch my breath. The way we deal with being knocked off – our thoughts, emotions, feelings, actions – is crucial. We can be surrounded by external love and support (which has been so important to me) however, our internal love and support is the key to us being able to let go; to feeling free.
In the words of the great sage, Jamie Catto, our primary life challenge is “to love ourselves, to be present with ourselves even when we feel depressed or lonely or insecure. To not escape our feelings and experiences in those moments is not as impossibly traumatic as we may imagine.
This is the time to soothe ourselves, talk to ourselves, remind ourselves that we, the steadfast adult, are still here, and are never leaving. This is the time to remind ourselves that we have always been here and survived every tough time, all the challenging emotional periods. We are here and always will be no matter what anyone else does or wherever anyone else goes.
I abandon myself when I try and get another person to do that job for me. Breaking that habit saves me from ever feeling abandoned again.
Next time that emptiness or insecurity arises in us let’s not anaesthetise ourselves by immediately running to the distracting comfort of another, or Facebook or food or drugs.“
Why is it so difficult to take care of the child inside? Sometimes it feels like I am doing everything I can to ignore her. I know that I am fearful that if I let her speak then I’ll be reduced to an emotional heap, and my pushy, driven, determined-to-get-on-with-life side will be out of a job. Surely the latter is what I have to thank for being able to so effectively (and often frantically) plough on with my work projects and socialise as much as possible (even when all I want to do is curl up on my sofa)?
But no. I’m slowly (very slowly) realising that it doesn’t work like that. I can’t dismiss or neglect my little girl inside – I have done that for too many years now. She has a voice which is crying out to be heard. I can work harder and harder at moving my life forward and “letting go” but if I’m not going to listen to her during this difficult period, her pain and suffering will never be healed. And that pain and suffering is part of me.
I am committing to making her a priority from today onwards. I am not entirely sure how however, I have a voice in my head uttering “love and acceptance”.
Ebbs and flows – that just about sums it up. One moment I’m feeling relatively normal and almost confident that I will get through this excruciatingly painful period. The next moment, I am floored by how much I miss him. So far today, I am missing him so badly that the only thing stopping me from phoning/texting/emailing him is knowing that any contact wouldn’t help; it would only send me spiralling downwards into the dark hole of despair.
…. “If we are unhappy without a relationship, we’ll probably be unhappy with one as well. A relationship doesn’t begin our life; a relationship doesn’t become our life. A relationship is a continuation of life.” [Beyond Codependency by Melody Beattie]
So I am on day 10 of a horribly painful separation from my best friend, my lover, my boyfriend, my soulmate (as cliched as that sounds). I’m on day 2 of the prohibition on all communication whatsoever. And yes, I’m counting the days.
This is the third extremely agonising break-up I’ve endured during my 30 (plus a few) years on this planet. Surely I’ve had my fair share by now? But I don’t want to go down that path of bemoaning the past and telling myself “here I go again”. Each relationship is unique in itself with different lessons to learn. And I’m certainly a changed person since my previous heartbreak 7 years ago.
The rationale behind writing this blog is partly selfish – I am hoping it may be cathartic (although no agenda, right?!) – and partly altruistic – if this helps anyone in the world in just a teeny tiny bit, that would be marvellous……
It is mind-boggling how many emotions I go through each day, and how many story-lines play through my head. I surprise myself on the odd occasion that I manage to avoid getting too involved in the swirling mass of fears, judgements, criticisms, personal rebukes, self-doubts and nihilism. Other times, that seems impossible. Or maybe I need to “try harder” with all that yoga and meditation which surely “should” make me immune to stuff like this?!