Yesterday was a family day of sorts. I got to spend time with some of my favorite small people, and then see a movie with the spouse. Not much time for house chores, though I did pull together a healthy beef stew that was gluten free and enough to feed the crew, along with some gf corn bread muffins.
At times, I have a great tendency to resist the call to action in my life. Especially when it calls for any level of confrontation or expression of feelings I would rather not admit to. I grew up in household where negative feelings and words were suppressed at all costs. My elders would express their displeasure at any outburst that was considered less than pleasing by their standards and I would shrink into my shell, looking for anything to pull out of my bag of tricks to make everything all right again. I coupled that in with the feeling that if I didn’t please or entertain enough, or be quiet when needed, I would be dismissed. This would mean I would have no one to love and protect me; my biggest fear of all. I used to have a repeating nightmare that I was standing in the living room at my grandmother’s house, with all of my family members standing in front of me, and that lightning would shoot through the huge double pane windows of the living room, causing each member to disappear until I was standing alone. I would awaken, panicked and wide-eyed, usually unable to go back to sleep.
This has been a foundational aspect of my dysfunction; my fear of being abandoned because of who I was, or was not. Performance anxiety taken to an extreme. Sometimes, I would just take off after breakfast, to be completely alone and by myself with just the imaginary friends and scenarios in my brain to keep me company. It was a respite from the pressure cooker chaos of home. I had few real friends, I just didn’t know how to relate to kids my age. I was too busy trying to survive my life, much less live a child’s life.
Again, a recurring theme. Survival mode, along with resistance. My recovery calls me out on these points. Working my steps helps me deal the wounds sustained in childhood (and beyond) so that I can walk forward and meet life on life’s terms. Recovery shows me that God is there, if I am willing, to walk me through difficult conversations about my feelings, like last night. I still struggle. I still resist. But I know where the power and the tools are located at, and it is my choice to reach for them and make use so that I don’t have to stay scared and alone, stuck in my fear of what others will think. It’s none of my business what other people choose to think about me. It IS my business what I choose to think about me, and my life.
We are now past 100 entries on this blog. If you are still reading and journey-ing along, so glad to have you. If you just joined, welcome.
Have a Blessed Sunday.