Last night, as we stood brushing our teeth, for the second time that night I asked my husband “are you mad at me?”
Annoyed, he spat out his toothpaste and shook his head “what are you talking about? I said no. Im just really tired”
I felt myself shrink. I caught my own reflection as I steadied myself, staring straight ahead, holding my breath in my chest and willing myself in that moment to stop feeling.
Truthfully, there was nothing my husband had done to suggest he was mad at me. Nothing had happened for me to assume he would be and yet I was so overwhelmed with the feeling that he might be that I had to ask if he was…twice.
This morning as we lay in bed together drinking coffee he asked me why I would even be asking that and I understood the frustration he felt in being told at the end of the day that somehow, in some way he had upset me.
He has communicated a million times over that a major driving force within his life is to see me happy, and so the irritation I felt in his response last night reflects feelings of failure, not being good enough or being unappreciated.
I get that. I can see that.
I didn’t intend that because truthfully in the moment I asked the question I wasn’t thinking about the impact of my words on him.
What I know is that my thought patterns need to be guided with clarity and compassion. My life story so far has seen me develop the capacity to notice when somebody’s energy has shifted. Im the kind of person that truly feels the energy in a room, and can sense when something if off in someone.
This has often kept me out of harms way OR given me a headsup to get ready to protect myself from what was coming.
A history of close relationship with primary carers, friends and lovers experiencing the challenges of mental health decline has made me hyper sensitive to mood swings, depressed states of being or even just unexplained change in focus or body language in others. I notice everything. I feel everything. It is both my superpower and my greatest burden.
The things that we have experienced and lived through and the way that has shaped the way we relate to the world, others and ourselves has altered the way we form perceptions, calculations and conclusions.
I need a hell of a lot of reassurance once my abandonment wound has been triggered – and this can happen simply because my husband hasn’t made eye contact with me in awhile, or I perceive that he hasn’t offered up physical touch, or that the tonality in his voice isn’t overtly kind and loving. It’s a lot of pressure to place on someone.
I know this about myself. Ive witnessed the ways certain sensations and emotions within my body truly signal danger to me as I anticipate rejection, abandonment, isolation and unworthiness.
Without being cliché, it truly is my inner child that is asking “are you mad at me?” in those moments. The child who couldn’t understand that what her mother was going through had nothing to do with whether she had been enough of a “good girl” that day or not.
To my memory, it was my behaviour that was always the final straw, the make and break for whether Mum could contain herself and the overwhelming emotion she was trying desperately to process in response to what she was experiencing in her life, her marriage, her mind and her body …so if I didn’t make her mad, she would stay present, able to show up, there. If I made her mad… she would take to bed and there was never anything I could do or say or change to fix that. The guilt I felt for “breaking mummy” again and again was far too heavy for my little soul to feel. I learned not to feel it.
“Are you mad at me?” is a question I ask not so much to try and fix it (because my inner child quickly learned she is powerless if someone is mad at her) but I ask it as a way to know if I should begin the process of shutting down, disconnecting and disassociating.
Im really asking “is it safe for me to be here – or should I leave?”
Ive worked really hard over the last 10 years (particularly in the last 6 years since my first husband and I decided to divorce) to create safety and security within myself.
My skilful self inquiry, the somatic healing I bring to myself daily, the redirection of thoughts that are rooted in the past towards the potential offered in the moment and constantly increasing my capacity to embody compassion, patience and wisdom has made a HUGE difference in the confidence I have to truly care for myself.
For the most part, I am self sufficient, but the truth is – we are interconnected beings and impacted by the ways others and the world are communicating with us in every moment too. There is still a tenderness within me when it comes to allowing myself to exist without constantly questioning whether my existence is valued, honoured, accepted, worthy.
Am I enough? Am I good? Am I good enough for you? Am I good enough for you so that you don’t have to feel bad?
These are the questions that the repressed parts of me below the surface are still seeking answers to.
So today, tethered to the safety of a relationship that allows me to see this clearly – I welcome those parts of me. Ill sit with them and feel them in my body.
Then Ill activate the power of somatic activated healing and offer myself a dedicated practice to move, shift and transform that energy. My emotional body is due for an upgrade with the wisdom I can now bring to those parts of me.
I am a blessing.
I need to hear that and feel that and move with that knowing as I allow the part of me that has believed I am a burden to dissolve itself a little more today.
This is devotion to wellbeing.
May we be well.
Watch a free workshop now!
BREAK FREE FROM NEGATIVITY AND DRAMA CYCLES
19 minute transmission from the heart of Lena Moxon.
Activating your willingness to step up as the leader of your own life & write the next chapter of your story.
We hate SPAM. We will never sell your information, for any reason.