I have a strong belief that you should never do something because you'll never get to be able to do it again. With this mindset you'll just constantly be chasing away at hellish advances. I also believe that you wouldn't want to do things simply on the fact that it's the first time you get to do them either. This mindset only holds a pathway of let down in expectation. I hold the belief that we should strive to do everything for the first time and the last time as we're doing it. New things, things we've done over and over again- nothing is ever the same thing twice. To be present with your actions is to be detached from any possible pain.
I was speaking to a friend on the phone recently, and she mentioned that she's been afraid to talk about what's going on in her life. This has been making it more difficult for her to heal. I forget sometimes that by telling my story to others, it allows them space for great reflection. I also forget about second chances, and how many I've given, and how many more I may want to give- an addiction is a habit that's unhealthy. To be deemed unhealthy is to increase the rate at which we decline, in any fashion. So, if you want, hang on to the seat of your pants- a reflection of some kind is ahead. My reflections within always seem to be deep, and to open that window for you is my pleasure- quite frankly I've beens scared to talk about what's going on in my life too. Hopefully, my reflection shines back to you in some way too.
My mother and I haven't always had a rocky relationship. When I was young she was a dream mom, a soulmate of sorts. Then my sister was born, and my sister was very sick. I played alone quite often, teaching myself to never be bored. I was responsible for my own fun, which is probably why my life is so adventurous and independent now. My mom decided, when I was still quite young, not to put down self hatred, and instead decided to stoke the fire and kept adding dry wood. Her self-hate fire hasn't been at the level of embers and almost total darkness for years, she just keeps feeding the flames.
When I was 18, my senior homecoming, she told me to "get the f*ck out" and to "never call her mom again." So, I did. I packed my bags and left. The devastation of losing a mom, and not understanding what I wanted after senior year, on top of high level anxiety and depression, ultimately ended me in the hospital after an overdose. Death is no joke, apparently, to the ones who love you. I didn't love myself, so it felt like a joke- the funniest of all. Except I couldn't laugh, only pretend like I felt anything, laughter included.
Recovery was fun, surprisingly. I had really hard moments. I had moments of looking over the ledge and thinking "I could totally jump," but I never did. There was no point for my self hate anymore. I was slowly letting my self-hate fire die. It's still dying, but I've gathered the strength to occasionally toss water on the edge embers, decreasing it's encompassing size and equally it's power of me. I'm still in recovery, we all are. Unless of course you've reached some higher form of self actualization, and if that's the case then please feel free to enlighten me- I'll be waiting for your email or phone call.
Then I decided to come off my anti-depressants one day, and fell into the hands of a non-prescribed addiction instead. This is something I still deal with in the form of food (and thankfully no longer hard drugs). It's all just information, the food we eat, the drugs we take, what we drink- it's information our body survives on. What we put into our body we become- I guess sometimes I really like to be junk food. What a thing to want to be when you grow up, junk food. I'm kidding- one, I'm never growing up, just getting older. And two, if I was growing up I assure you I would take part in a system like college and not be junk food... anyhow.
My mother and I's relationship rekindled when I moved to Kansas City. I was leaving and it felt strangely wrong to not announce to my mother somehow that I wouldn't be around anymore. I took the emotional chance of vulnerability and asked her for dinner. We had been occasionally speaking, at an increasing rate until this past week. I even came back to her house to watch her dogs- a dutiful daughter thing to do.
Something in me thought she was changing herself, smothering her self-hate fire. Somehow she hid how the flames had gotten bigger. I don't know how she did this, but being alone in her house for a week it became very evident to me a few notes. The first is that she was crazier than when I left my senior year of high school, that all the emotional weight she'd put on she just kept gaining. The second thing that become readily apparent to me was that I was never going to change her and subsequently, third, that it wasn't my job to save her either.
It's not our job to save anyone else, to heal anyone else, to be anything for anyone. Our job in this life is to be so unified with our body, our being, that there are no longer barriers between us, our neighbor, the tree down the street, or the mountain crest that's a days drive away. It is a duty, I've decided to engage in, to cut off toxic beings from my life. I started doing this with so called friends after I was raped. I then did this with significant others, that transitioned into possible significant others, and now apparently to my parental units. I refuse to let anyone dull the light that burns so deeply within me, even if it is my mother, even if it means saying goodbye and farewell. I cannot heal her, and she may never heal on her own, but I would be doing a wrong service to humanity to allow her toxic being to stay in my life and smother the beautiful light I have within.
Second chances are strange. I gave many second chances to her, whether she was aware of them or not she smothered all of them, unlike her self-hate fire. It's a weird thing to watch someone who you care for so deeply slowly give themselves to darkness and perish. It's a weird thing to see someone die before their body gives out. I strongly believe death is a choice. Death is a human notion of an ultimate ending, one that we can choose to engage in as we please. So then, rightly, maybe this is the death of my mother and I's relationship, an ultimate ending of sorts.
I try and remind my step siblings, when I can, not to take advantage of or to disrespect their mom. She does anything but that to them. She has given me more than maybe any step parent has ever given to their step child. It's incredible to experience, her love. I was arguably not an angel when it came to my mother and I's relationship, but she unknowingly framed the perfect picture of this ending that we painted together.
It's been liberating exercising the fact that she holds no more power over me, that her presence has dwindled. No longer do I hold onto her pain as if it were my own. No longer do I look to her as a role model.
I am not asking for pity as I write this, no. In fact, I'm hoping maybe as you were reading you gained some kind of solace, peace, something, from what I had to say. Who is to know, maybe you had similarities in your life, or with another relationship. Cherish the healthy communities you have and the communions you share within them. Cherish yourself, love yourself- even if it means cutting out toxic beings from your life. Even if that toxic being is a family member, a mom even.
I leave, in a few hours, for Colorado. I've been 'on the road' as a transient for a month or so. I've been playing it safe, I mean I am home visiting family right now. I haven't been avoiding the open road and opportunity, but rather fearing it (while simultaneously tying up loose ends with the family). I have decided to be done with fear. No more fearing connection, or strength, or love, or power, or myself. Fear's only purpose is to show us where we need to spend more time. And time is just a measurement of experience. Fear shows us where we need to shine the light of experience, and this is how fear can light a path of growth. Don't give in to fear, but don't get rid of it either- it serves a purpose. Use your tools until you transcend them, that is the most graceful way I have found to grow. Reaching beyond those tools when we aren't ready is what causes even more pain and confusion. One of our purposes in this life is to suffer, for if we do not know suffering then we cannot know what it is to not suffer, and even to be joyous, blissful. Use your tools to transcend the tool and then transcendence itself. Before I speak in too many more circles, I'll point out htat I've never been good with endings- my mother and I's relationship included. So, signing off- enjoy your day, may you walk peacefully your own way. Namaste.