The Abyss

Settling in for a cup of freshly brewed coffee, my internal world relaxes. Upon waking my body is revved on guard as if living in a hut with vicious animals that want to devour me. My teeth are still clenched from the nightly demons who visit, and every sinew is taught.

But the heat from the fire begins its magic. Muscles unfurl, like the silly cat next to me who also melts like a wax blob, one half twisted out, the other half curled over the other, looking like a braided pretzel stick.

The onslaught for volumes of food after a week or more of scrupulously counting calories tells a story begun at age 8- I am unlovable, incapable. Love came at the end of a spoon, a form of escape fed by denial.

The sweetness of life drips like honey when staying in my body mastering emotions by being there when they ebb and flow. Because they do flow out eventually. Running into an escape, whether shopping, alcohol, drugs, or my rabbit hole- food, means leaving my body and its cues of physical hunger and satiation.

The craving for emotional satiation is only temporarily satisfied by external things. What can be counted on is emotional maturity fortified with emotional discipline. STAY. Sit, stay, and be there. I’m OK.

 

CONTENTMENT

A post this morning mentioned the word ‘contentment.’ That is good word for my feelings lately. I feel my body and am able to stay there in ways not experienced before. Though things swirl around me, or out in the world, my inner world is content. 

A brother who’s second adult child is in danger after already losing the first one. I call with no words to say hearing raw pain in his voice going to my core.

A president who changes the sentencing of a friend using his power for personal gain again and again- corrupt and evil bringing out the worst of everyone in the country, a little Hitler in the making. His sickness like a pesticide, toxic, poisonous, and spread by his cowardly, bullying tweets. Why does half the country vote for him?

Inner contentment remains, a peace precious to remember during chaos because it will come as all things are impermanent.

Where Life Flows

Decisions are hard to impossible if one lives life separated from their being. That also makes life barely worth living. And how can a being make a decision if disconnected from oneself?

Decisions made were often catastrophic. Made without knowing, because the knowing needed is touching one’s center because the soul knows. But that also is the place that felt the hurt so overwhelmingly I left it, only returning in late life with gratitude for living long enough to discover the oasis called home inside of me.

Decisions don’t need to be made in haste, or exclusively in the mind. Much better is letting go to the other world, the soul, the vaporous, seemingly non-existent place you cannot put your hand on, only trust that it is there.

From there, the center of my being, answers flow. But often they take time. Time to calm the excited, ever busy mind. Time to breathe into it, for every muscle, sinew, and joint to relax. For the heart to ease, the blood to calm like sunset waters…the answers come; small ones, big ones, they do come.

Where once life was lived in angst for questions without answers, for answers that elevated the angst because they were the wrong ones, the soft place to fall welcomes me, my center where love flows.

EATING ANXIETY

photo by Patricia- SUN DOG in the early morn Jan. 29, 2020

Eat away pain, eat away anxiety. It is a tool to handle unwanted emotions that overwhelm. Tracking my intake goes well for a few days, then the disconnect of my psyche to my body takes place, more common than connecting.

Though the food eaten was plotted in my journal, it was too much causing pain all afternoon into the evening. This familiar physical pain began after the bizarre stomach stapling I just had to have in 1985.

The pain of my psych began long before that, at age eight, after the first attack. Further attacks by other siblings made the fissure complete. Wholeness is a gift from birth but being connected to my body became impossible after that. The split was not a conscious decision. Regaining title to my own property remains elusive. 

It takes a spaceship launching deep into the many layers of resistance before landing in my core, to what is really there. Much of life was lived zipping around it like busy electrons, not nestled inside attached to my soul in wholeness.

Writing each morning helps to swim deeper below the surface, diving down unafraid, or afraid yet taking the plunge anyway. Staying there is harder, using the breath to slow down the pace to remain present. Each moment present takes work and is tiring, and sometimes so difficult it is impossible. But when achieved so worthwhile.   

Cause pain that’s familiar, or dare to feel what is there? Listen to your body, but first you must be connected to it. This great divide occurred long ago, living that way because it is how it was and I knew no different. One day out of three going awry doesn’t mean giving up, and the count is in my favor. Keep at it. Keep working on connection to my body. 

It is only in my ‘golden years’ that another way of being is discovered that others unshattered have lived all their lives— with wholeness, and connection to their core. That takes moment to moment work, being whole, feeling whole, and welcoming what is really there. The fissures are painted and glued back together whole with warmth, softness, acceptance, kindness, and courage. 

Holding my Own Key to Happiness

Forever at the root of my core resided the belief of being bad, wrong, and always the one at fault. That is the feeling turned fact at age eight, growing every year becoming rock solid.

And that belief did solidify. How could it not with no one to tell me differently? No one to hold me, rock me, tell me that what they did was wrong, that they would be punished, that it wouldn’t happen again.

Because it did keep happening, and happening, and happening.

This is a time of peace, a time when that belief has been chipped at, questioned, and challenged. A crack has evolved where warmth seeps in, or oozes outward. Ever so slowly, bits of comfort float up where once only animosity to self had been. It is a change that could have occurred fifty years ago.

If only someone had the courage to hold my hand and take a stand. No one did. But I do now… tentatively, fearfully as if I’m doing something wrong in liking myself, for showing acceptance towards my own being, like the axe will fall for doing so.

No axe falls. Taking that step towards kindness and self-love after so long is freeing. The origin family collectively used subtle tactics to sustain low esteem to keep me silent. But my true nature includes persistence.

Baby- steps, tiny fissures are pried open wider using words of encouragement and uplift rather than harsh criticism. Treasures are found never enjoyed before: peace, openness, self-acceptance, joy.

Freedom is savored, the freedom to choose to (learn) to love myself. And each day a reminder to embrace gratefulness for making it through the hazards and treachery of all the years past. Where self-hate ruled in a mixing bowl of adrenaline pumped anxiety, confusion, self-doubt, and a total inability to connect with my own soul. 

To come to a place others never lost, is now found for me. A delectable experience not to be contaminated by bitterness towards what was. My choice is to enjoy the miraculous now.   

 

FREEDOM

Staring at the fire, mistakes made with my first son when he was growing up begin to weigh on me. No, a gentle voice whispered. We are all flawed, you can’t go back, but what you can do now is be better.

The fire’s flames sway like bright red hula dancers behind the glass, shoulders relax, the critic melts away. It is the critic who keeps me awake at night, or butts in as the day begins.

Is that freedom? Freedom is allowing the wonder of life into every moment. It isn’t forever, this life, though it is often lived as if that were so.

When things are settled, enjoy it, don’t ruin it with negativity, something I’m very good at. Become good at something else, like gentleness, and acceptance, with a sprinkling of kindness. Try that…that is freedom.

Black and White Meet Grey

What if you beat the beast by not beating, but loving with soothing counterpunches in the form of words that shower care? A fight or a soft cloud. As it often is in the world of Patricia, finding a balance can be difficult as my world has been black or white. As years pass more grey lifts up offering a sultry fog mixing both. The ups and downs begin to meet in the middle as if standing on the center of a see-saw.

And that’s OK, it’s called balance, and I like it. No great highs to come down from, nor lows to rip myself up from, though there seems to be more of those than the highs. A general evenness has evolved.

Be aware of the successes savoring them, not dwelling on what’s lacking but relishing all that is; the sparkle from the twirling items sending prisms along the wall and carpet causing the kitty’s head to spin one way then the other.

Enjoying her antics, then her need to curl up on my lap offering her belly for pets until my legs ache and need to move. Love flows freely between human and cat. She responds to it, and I surely do if I pay attention to the moments.

So many pleasures at hand, right here at home. A trip to return a few items starts out enjoyable making me wonder if I ought to get out more. Faces smile back at my smile bringing a feeling of joy. By the second hour, and an argument at the check-out, not heated, but ongoing, the manager is called who allows the return.

Weariness takes over with a wish to be home, the tiredness hitting like a stone wall. The external world can be exhausting, reminding me why my life remains reclusive. Each person is parroting their needs, like the cashier who doesn’t understand the benefits of satisfying a customer, repeating the store’s policy as if it’s a edict from the King.   

Home. Home Sweet Home.