Wednesday, September 27, 2006

Aftermath, Part One

I suspect that this is the first of many posts tracking the fallout from the past few days.

I've been trying to stay centered in awareness, in the place within myself that is not attached to suffering, that can hold perspective. Generally, I am failing.

I know that the last five years have been amazing, filled with joy, growth, and love. And while I know that objectively, it's hard to live in that space right now. I don't even know if I should try to live in that space.

I hear old voices in my head that tell me all of my relationships are doomed to failure, that everyone I ever love will leave me, that I am too flawed for anyone to ever really love me. The loudest voice is the one that makes me the victim. It says that anyone who has ever left me -- even those who have died -- has abandoned me, betrayed me.

I know this is shadow stuff. I know where these voices come from -- the subpersonalities that hold these views and when they developed. But when they come up (as in the poem I posted this morning and have since removed), they hold the rest of me hostage. I become possessed with their worldview.

Many of the feelings coming up right now are leftovers from ten years ago, the last time I went through the ending of a long-term relationship. Back then I had no tools to deal with the pain. Remnants of those feelings are conflating with feelings from the current situation to make it all seem much worse than it is.

The reality is that I am in a good place in my life. I can do anything I want, and I can go anywhere I want.

Yes, I've lost the woman who I trusted to be my partner for life. Yes, there is bitterness and pain about that, not to mention a fair amount of self-recrimination -- even though I can be no one other than who I am right now.

So I struggle between those dark shadow places that I am dragging into the light and the cool awareness of detachment that keeps me balanced.

But I am clear that the shadow stuff needs to be dragged into the light -- I need to relive those dark feelings that have been buried for so many years and know that they will not devour me, that those voices are not telling the truth about me or my life.

When that shadow work happens in this space, please know that it is only that -- the shadows being dragged out into the light.


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