When my mom died I went through a ton of different emotions. For a while they were all surface things about what had happened, what our last words were, who was there, who wasn’t there and so on. I was a few years into Higher Consciousness and I was attempting to apply everything I knew about looking at the stories, the emotions, the things my head was saying to me to work through it. I knew I had anger because I was cussing and bitching about a few things. I knew I had pain because the tears would come every once in awhile. I knew I had guilt because I would hear myself degrade myself.
The entire time I also knew that this was my mother’s chosen path. That our souls decide beforehand whether or not they are going to step out or not. I knew she wasn’t a victim, that she had made her choices, she had chosen the way she was going to go and that part of her choice was so that those around her could also be shown what they needed to be shown through her death. I have no idea what the paths of others are, I know what mine is, mostly in hindsight but sometimes beforehand as well.
I was stuck in this whirl of emotions. I was feeling them inside my body, I was acting them out and at the same time I was rationalizing them. I felt guilty because of this… I felt angry because of this… I felt hurt because of this… Was I actually feeling those feelings? Was I actually letting myself feel it or was I stuffing those feelings back inside my body. I started really paying attention, I would stomp and scream and then cut it off. I would start to cry and be hurt and then cut it off. About the only thing I did continually was beat myself up but even then I was essentially doing the same thing as the others, only this time I wasn’t cutting it off to stop myself from fully feeling it, instead I was making it a circular thing that I had no escape from.
I would go in and talk to my girlfriend at the time and tell her how angry/upset/hurt/depressed/guilty I was and she would say something like “yeah, I bet” “wow, yeah I would be too” “I totally get it” and I would walk away feeling some what better until it started all up again. I kept looking for the missing piece, I was doing everything I had been doing up until then. I’m letting go of the emotions, I see the stories that bring them up, my body is feeling them and letting them go, right? I thought so…
I spent years doing exactly that, never really getting to the core of what I felt. Tons of people pointed their fingers at me, "blaming" me for not knowing how I felt. Yet for all of us it is the same thing. No matter how we look at it, how we seek validation in others, how we treat other people, we are taught from the beginning not to truly feel. We know the words about letting go but do we ever truly know what that means. I have done and heard the same thing from people “Oh I’m hurt but I’m just going to let it go,” “yeah he/she ticked me off but I let it go.” We can say it easily when it is someone we know like a family member or spouse, we just “let it go” and years later we wonder why we are so passive aggressive or resent one another.
In other cases, like a stranger, it depends on how we are used to dealing with things. We can range from bitching or whining about it to out and out rage or victimizing ourselves. We can go for the jugular, we want them to fucking die, get run over, whatever. It becomes and eye for an eye, tooth for a tooth or we push it so far inwards we walk around with a perpetual smile that only the most in-tune person can recognize as fake. We are all taught to bury things behind societal rules of not being selfish or not being violent or not being aggressive/outspoken/hostile. Some are overly demure, shy or timid. We have all been taught to not feel the feelings we say we have. We do not own them, they are not ours we ARE angry we don’t feel angry. If we do actually make it to FEELING angry we say we shouldn’t, it’s not right, it’s not healthy and so on. When do we actually start feeling these feelings and frankly why should we?
It wasn’t until one day when I was outside alone in 110 degree Phoenix weather that I realized I wasn’t angry that she was gone, I was angry that she was never there to begin with. I was angry that she hadn’t loved me the way I thought she should. I was angry that she didn’t protect me from being hurt as a kid. I was angry that she hurt me as a kid. I was angry that… On and on I went until I had stomped and screamed and flailed and threw punches at an invisible person that I had been angry at for years and years but never wanted to admit to. I did the same thing with every other emotion I had until I was exhausted and I sat down on the ground.
In that place of pure exhaustion, in that place of finally feeling my feelings I learned that the missing piece was that I had never validated myself for 1. Having those feelings and 2. Allowing myself to understand that I had every right to feel that way. This wasn’t about right or wrong, I couldn’t rationalize having the feelings I could only HAVE them. My rationalizing hand essentially shut down my being allowed to feel them. Acting them out had poured fuel on the fire sure, but to actually feel them I had to let myself know it was OKAY to have them. It was OKAY to feel it, it was OKAY period and nobody had the right to tell me it wasn’t because they were MY feelings. I’m the only one that knows what I feel and therefore it was okay to feel that way.
As I sat there, exhausted, realizing that I had finally felt a lifetime of feelings. Feelings that I had as a young kid and that I kept having throughout my years and had kept suppressing. Years of turning my feelings against myself. Years of eating my feelings. Years of shutting my feelings down. Those years had been all because I thought I wasn’t supposed to feel things like that for my mom. At that realization I also saw that I had the same feelings for myself. That instead of pointing at my mom, I was really pointing at me.
I hated her for not loving me… I didn’t love myself. I hated her for not protecting me… I hated myself for not protecting me… Everything I pointed at her for I could turn around and point at myself for too. At the very core of not allowing myself to fully feel my feelings was myself and all the things I had laid at my doorstep for this life. I looked at them all and it felt overwhelming and then I had to start to break them down, one by one, to twist my own head, to relieve myself of the story, to free myself and to finally look at the core of it all and begin to love myself from there.