The liberation of me…
That’s the title that sprung to my head, thinking about what I could write a book about. I have felt repressed about a lot of things. Not that it didn’t serve me well at the time, but it is now holding me back.
I have never made myself a priority in a relationship, nor even in my own life for that matter. It’s a hard thing to admit, almost embarrassing, but admit it I do.
I am caring, compassionate and extremely empathetic, to a fault. I can physically feel others’ pain. It’s a gift and a curse until you figure out how to manage it.
My job is to take care of myself. Loving myself and checking in with myself is my responsibility. It’s often thrown around but the fog lifted and I finally believe… if you don’t have love for yourself, take care of your own needs, what can you possibly have for someone else, even children?
I came to a startling revelation, after sleeping with a younger man, the one in my previous post. He held me so tightly and fell asleep. It was like a death grip to try to slip out of (he was snoring so loudly I couldn’t sleep!) As I looked at him sleeping, I could FEEL his brokenness, I could almost hear his soul crying out in misery and tears well up in my eyes as I write this. That’s why I instinctively knew he was bad for me, I had that feeling from the start.
I have taken on “projects” in the past. I don’t want to objectify them and make them sound like they were emotionless nor had no outstanding qualities, but because I feel so deeply, to the core of who they are, I can almost see inside their soul. It sounds pretty “holy roller” but it is something I have always known and don’t know how to shut it off. It’s an important part of who I am.
I call them “projects” because I make it my life’s work to make them feel better about themselves. Obviously this takes the attention away from the real work: ME. Sadly, I’ve been acutely aware of the neuroses but felt utterly powerless over it, until now.
After my session with Michael, I have been flooded with all sorts of emotions. Spontaneous tears, anger, anxiousness and fear. I’ve had conversations with friends about how the relationship with this younger man should be viewed by me, felt by me. A lot of them have mentioned the words: control, YOUR needs, separation, satisfaction, confidence and perspective. But it wasn’t until breakfast with my best friend this morning that the lightbulb went off about one of the purposes of the situation.
I began to really FEEL for this man, in a way that would take away from myself. I could feel him starting to be my next “project”. I truly empathize with him, care about him, in a way that I know does not bode well for a simply “physical relationship”. But it also dawned on me that the time I spent between our visits, was empty space, nothing filled it, I had no purpose, at least not in my own mind. While I did visualize the life I want to lead, and feel the voice of the clown dogging me, trying to figure out how to push it away, my time was otherwise wasted, trying to steer the relationship to my liking. That was the eureka moment. I wasn’t participating in my own life! And I viewed it as “wasted” time because I feel I want to enjoy and savour every moment of the time I have! I want to fill the space with joyous moments, as much as I can create and saturate!
I just called my best friend in full on sobbing tears. He is as sensitive to others as I am. I asked him how he separates himself from the overwhelming urge to “help” others. He asked me, wouldn’t you rather feel something for people and situations rather than feel nothing at all? After speaking to him for a bit, I realized I DO keep some people at arm’s length because I know I would be overtaken by their emotions, their pain. I can sense that some people will be a complete drain on my energy so don’t engage. My friend said for some reason, this man has a purpose in my life or I wouldn’t have let him into my space. He’s right.
I’ve heard it said that some people you enter into relationships with are there as a mirror to yourself, held up for you to see the work you need to do on yourself.
Am I as broken and filled with pain as my “friend”? Can others sense my intense longing for acceptance? Can others tell I am masking that pain with other things, like HUMOUR?! Could the intense sadness be MINE?! The feelings I’ve never let come up nor out?
I sobbed for half an hour straight after asking myself those questions. Then called my friend again to tell him. What I had been pushing down, was FEELING my own emotional agony.
Isn’t it ironic in the first few sentences of this very post, I used the word “repressed”.
More self-reflection and the “work” continues…
I’m still thinking about Sinead O’Connor today. I feel she is someone who expresses her deep pain in her music. This song haunts me and I remember it being popular in a time of scattered confusion and anxiousness in my life. It’s also very powerful.