Weird, I just went back and read my New Year post from last year and realized that I didn’t write in this blog for the same four months in 2013 that I missed in 2014… for roughly the same reasons. I go back each year and read my New Year post from the previous year as a way of taking personal inventory. Did I accomplish the things I wanted to? If so, how? If not, why? You get it. Right? So yeah, last year I didn’t do so great at facing the things I wanted to, at least not in the way that I wanted to.
I think that I am having an easier time letting go when it comes to matters having to do with my son. Thinking about how sad I was in 2013 about my baby growing up makes me want to cry a little bit. I was pretty out of it. He is 19 now and 2014 was a bit easier. I am letting go of my need/desire to protect him from mistakes and heartache. I am his mom so I will never stop worrying about him but I can’t force him to trust in the lessons I learned at his age because he needs to learn them for himself. I love him more than the moon and I think I am learning to enjoy watching him grow into a man now. He makes me smile a lot and we laugh. Yes, we also fight and cry sometimes, but I this is happening less and less. So yay for that!
We did the big family vacation again this year and I was just as, if not more wound up than I have been in years past. Truth be told, this was a rough year financially for my husband and I and by the time vacation rolled around I probably should have been sedated. That is OK. I just drank a lot… I didn’t handle this at all like I saw myself handling it when I was writing my New Year post last year. I rallied once we got there and just tried to relax, have fun, and have faith that we would be able to come back from the financial issues we have had. I did enjoy myself and the time with my son and husband as a family, and the time with my husband’s family.
The truth is that I struggle a lot with anxiety and serious depression around financial issues. I can’t handle the feeling of not being financially secure. I think this very much comes from growing up the way I did. My parents were not good with money. They fought about money ALL THE TIME. Like fought loud and hard… the kind of fighting that makes children cry in bed at night and develop unhealthy coping mechanisms (but enough of that). My parents never taught me how to be good with money so I failed pretty hard at it in my young adulthood and in my first marriage… where we fought long and hard about money. You see a theme here? Not to dwell on the subject, because I really didn’t mean to take this direction, but I guess I just felt I needed to explain my anxiety and depression and lack of coping skills around financial instability (and don’t worry, this is something that I am working on in 2015 as well but I view this process as more of a private one as it involves my husband and marriage).
Actually, this brings me back on track! The one thing that I said I really wanted to do in 2014 that I, in my view, failed at kind of miserably was “setting boundaries by speaking my truth freely and without shame”, I did pretty well with the rest, but not this one. I think that I had it slightly wrong when I wrote it. I never feel shame about my truth. I don’t believe in shame. Frankly, I think that shame is a giant load of horse shit. Nobody that should feel real shame about their actions ever does (because if they did they wouldn’t fucking repeat those actions… for the record I am talking about people like rapists and serial killers and animal/child/elder abusers). It is a horribly flawed concept, this “shame” thing and I think that misplaced shame cripples people.
What I really should have said was something along the lines of “honoring my truth by setting boundaries without fear”. And as I mentioned, I wasn’t so great at that. But the good news is that I started seeing a therapist in 2014 and I think I will be making some big strides in this department in 2015. I want to spend most of this year just kicking fear’s ass. I am tired of being afraid. It isn’t until very recently that I have realized just how much of my life I have spent being afraid. I know this fact might shock a lot of people who know me because I face the majority of my fears head on and without much comment, but the internal wrestling matches I have around these fears does quite a number on me and always has.
I didn’t address the fear related issues I talked about addressing at all last year. Well… that isn’t exactly true. I think I addressed them by avoiding them; by stuffing them once again, by distracting myself with more pleasant things, but ultimately none of that helped me feel better about those issues that stir the dark little caldron of fear simmering in my belly. It is the same fear. I don’t want people to be angry! I hate conflict (although I will have it with no problems if I must). I hate irrational behavior from others. And I really, really hate it when people make THEIR issues about me. I have done some serious work at owning my problems and I absolutely loath it when other people try to make their own shit about me. I have gotten pretty good at deflecting that in some situations but have lost considerable ground in others. Ultimately I believe that this is a giant fear of rejection that I have. My fear is not limited to the situations that I have already described and I am sick to fucking death of it holding me back. It holds me back personally on many levels and it holds me back professionally.
So without much more rambling I want to say that I am making this year all about me. With my therapist to help me navigate this life/mind-set change I am going overcome my fear of people reacting to my boundaries badly. I am going to learn to sooth myself in healthy ways when people do react badly to my boundaries. I am going to start worrying about me and what my feelings are and stop worrying about how others will react if I try to take care of myself and my needs, and I am going to lessen the load I am carrying exponentially by doing this.
I have other things I want to work on this year and I am sure they will come up here in 2015, but this fear thing is by far my biggest stumbling block and I am very ready to climb over it and kick it down the fucking ravine of traumas past for good.