And It Was Me.
I Heard a Compassionate Voice
I thought it time to evaluate with you. Buckle up Buttercup, you have come so far, yet the journey is just beginning.
Remember the time your therapist said to you, ‘tell me your list of importance.’ You said: ‘children, husband and career’, in order. She said, ‘where are you on that list?’ You were flabbergasted because it never occurred to you to be on the list! This floored me. A pinnacle point in your growth. The idea you were worthy to take care of too.
For so long, you accepted other’s treatment, put more stock in outsiders opinions. You changed like a chameleon, to fit their needs. Codependency, taught by a narcissistic, mentally ill mother. You couldn’t fulfill their needs, so you brought out the severest form of anti-love, toxic shame.
Beating yourself over the head, your own foot on your throat constantly, you tried to change who you were to fit other’s expectations. I would throw little thoughts into the mix, ‘you aren’t that bad,’ or ‘maybe this time you could stand up for myself,’ but you never listened.
Do I have your attention yet? When you heard a compassionate voice, inside your head, it was me.
The deep-rooted unworthiness. Mental castration of anything positive. Shame. Perfectionism. Over-remorse of mistakes. The culmination of what you were taught. Tell me you see the truth now.
It’s like suffocating slowly, in a ghastly fog of negative self-condemnation.
Today the fog is slowly lifting. You recognize the developmental abuse; physical, emotional and sexual. It shaped how you viewed yourself, molded how you saw the world. You abandoned me, to survive.
The lies aren’t truth. They taught you were to blame, worthless, powerless and should be ashamed.
I sit observing, silently rejoicing, watching you take better care of yourself. Oh I know, self-care has become a buzzword in society, people think it’s only about bubble baths, Netflix binges and naps. Throw in some Belgian chocolate and self-care is complete, right?
Self-care is functional, emotional, relational and physical. Internal self-care. You are your own most precious gift. Caring and loving that gift, which is intrinsically tied with joy, because then you can care and love others.
You stopped doing things for others they were capable of doing, for themselves. Looked at how you were over-responsible for others feelings.
You began to see you could make mistakes, but you weren’t a mistake. Aha moment, shame versus guilt. Guilt is about behavior. Shame is about the person. Awareness of toxic shame cropping up, invaluable.
Your sparkle was always there, the flame they couldn’t extinguish. You are not invisible today, you shine, and glow. Not accepting crumbs of what used to pass for love, anymore. You didn’t know you would grow to be a warrior, standing up for your heart. On the outside, you were just another little girl who had no rights, no voice. Today, you stand tall, healing with the other brave souls, stating your truth with clarity, using your voice with authenticity, and saying, NO MORE.
You believe me today, when I say you are enough. You matter.
I come from a place of love for you. I used to reflect your hatred of self, mirroring your abusers opinions, abandoning you to their own shame demons, and sick dysfunctions. Today, I am your friend. I am your conscience. I am your energy. I am your light. Whereas, the darkness was bold, before the storm of growth, when healing started, you forgave yourself for not being ‘perfect.’
Today, the compassion you give me and others, repairs potholes and ruts in the road of shame, degradation and active dislike.
There is so much more for you to learn, live and love. You will always be a work-in-progress. I will stay with you lovingly, while you invest in me. Remember, I can turn back into ugly self-reflection easily, as I mirror what you think, and do. It’s your choice.
Gratitude is vital. Stuck in the negative version of me, you have none. Tripping over your feet, falling down the shame spiral. Appreciate the pain as well as the joy. Pain is uncomfortable, but more so when you fight it.
Nurture yourself. Live in empathy, not judgement. Share your experiences, help the next person. Remain teachable. Know that you are perfect in your imperfections.
That compassionate voice in your head and heart. Yeah, that’s me and I’m so glad you are listening.