I honestly had such flawed thinking and attitudes growing up. I often felt the victim and would lash out, because in my experience with my family, I heard over and over how I made other people do and say bad things. So naturally it stands to reason that, well, when I am forced into misconduct, it is also the fault of someone else. Right? Ugh. Horrifying to look at– but so amazing to see how far I have come and what I have unlearned and managed to impart to my sons. I have been able to develop a boundary for myself to keep myself safe from attitudes towards me that are unfair, unkind, and diminishing to me. I learned to take care of myself. Finally.
There were no clear, consistent boundaries or routines discernible to me in my childhood home and family life. This was confusing for me and, I believe, played a role in inhibiting me from developing vision and purpose in my life. It prevented me from knowing what I wanted and liked. Sustaining a state of perpetual vigilance and shame–I pinballed through life running from pain and blame and chasing anything resembling connection, without learning healthy coping, thriving, or promising relationship skills.
Fortunately, after becoming a mother, in an unhappy marriage that mirrored my family of origin experience, I was brought to my knees by the gravity of knowing I had two precious ones looking to me/us to see how life and love are done. And how we, as a couple of very broken people, were doing it was not acceptable to me. I elected to change while my husband at the time committed to never changing. Divorce was the beginning of my recovery. Previously, I had divorced my FOO via No Contact along with a legal name change, claiming myself but then proceeding only to recreate the same in my marriage to someone spiritually, emotionally and morally similar to my FOO.
Recovery helps me to unlearn all of the craziness of shame, blame, guilt, denial. Those things no longer work for me or or on me. I have a design for living that teaches me about appropriate self care, responsibility, and healthy expectations for myself and others. The most valuable lesson I have learned about expectations- is that I am accountable ONLY to those expectations which I help to create. In the The Four Agreements, I learned the concept of “Be Impeccable with Your Word”. I have become quite skilled and intentional at keeping my words and actions in line with my spiritual program, regardless of whom is listening or present. This helps to avoid needless complexity and frustration. Learning to live a spiritually driven life offers consistency and serenity, where previously, I experienced only fear and chaos, oh and SHAME. I also now limit proximity to those who do not share the value of this “Agreement”. It is just too scary for me.
At this time, my recovery is still too fragile to expose myself to given sources of confusion and complexity, indirect communication, conflicting messages and non-transparency. I am a work in progress. I love love love my courage to change the things I can. And, while I am not great at much, I am a badass at trying every day, at telling my truth, and being impeccable with my word to each person with whom I communicate. My spiritual striving, becoming more wholesome and close to the God of My Understanding is what gets me out of bed each day. Never giving up or giving in to the unwholesome and easier ways(seeking GOD rather than avoidance of judgment and retaliation by others) is what I consider to be badass. I would rather stand alone than sit at the table with people who cannot be counted on to align their words to their actions. I find that to be terrifying and my boys deserve a non-terrified mother. We practice being responsible with our bodies, words, and actions, together, one day at a time. We practice making amends when we fail. We practice being human together.
After the weekend miracle, I am feeling strengthened in my faith and courage–by having been open to the call to take contrary action and willing to do a thing that was immensely undesirable and difficult. Because I have a program to guide me instead of my will or my fear, I was able to do the best thing for our family.
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