“Happiness is not something ready made. It comes from your own actions.” ― Dalai Lama XIV
Before I go off on one of my rambles, I would like to welcome into the wonderful world and community of blogging…
Deborah Allin and her very first blog – Emerging From The Dark Night. She has only just started so please be supportive – remember your first time and how it felt, and what you wished you knew then that you now know – and give her time to find her blogging feet – WordPress can be very fiddly.
She wrote a beautiful poem expressing the pain of being in a relationship with a Narcissist, which she shared with me in the comments on one of my posts. When I read it I was struck deeply by the power in her writing and how poignantly she had captured a feeling, and my instinctive reaction was that the poem needed to be shared in a post – A Poem about the Pain of a Narcissistic Relationship by Deborah Allin.
I’ve been encouraging (not nagging) Deborah to create her own blog because I recognise in her a voice which needs a microphone and a beautiful soul who needs a stage to share her gifts loudly, proudly and openly for herself and for us.
If that sounds grandiose, it’s because it is. We are all unique, and our uniqueness is something which should be celebrated. When we celebrate who we are we energise ourselves, and that energy fills us up and then overflows out into the world, touches the lives of others and inspires a similar energy to rise up within them which fills them up and overflows and touches others, and so on… a wonderful way to connect, human to human, and to experience that connection.
Celebrating who we are is not about being egotistical, but the ego does participate in it and enjoy it – the ego is not a bad thing, it is only bad when it is misunderstood, the ego has a purpose or it would not exist – it is about embracing the meaning of life which is life itself and life expresses itself differently through each and every one of us. Life loves being loved, then spreading that love around, because this kind of love is not in short supply, it grows the more you share it and thrives on the joy it inspires.
I think we’re all born with the natural impulse to share who we are with others. Babies always have their arms spread open as though inviting the world into their hearts and offering their hearts to the world. It is only as we get older that we learn how to cross our arms over our hearts. Crossing your arms over your chest is a defensive posture. It is done to protect ourselves, because the experiences we have as we grow can be painful, our hearts get hurt, stabbed, broken and crushed. Our love for others gets rejected, and when that happens we feel as though who we are is rejected too. We begin close ourselves off from others. We begin to retreat bit by bit from the world. We begin to live in fear and become cautious, sharing less and less of ourselves.
We build a fortress around ourselves so no one can get in without our permission, but in doing that we imprison ourselves. Our life energy, our love, is trapped and becomes a treasured resource because we come to believe that we have so little of that it must only be used very sparingly.
One of the problems of building a fortress around your heart is that it tells your heart that it is weak. Your heart is anything but weak, in fact it is a bastion of strength and powers your life. Its fragility is a part of its strength. Your heart needs to be open – yes, this may mean that it will be vulnerable to attack, but the heart can transmute pain into inspiration, and when it is open it does this more thoroughly and effectively. A closed off heart will live in pain and be unable to transform pain into a powerful motivating energy.
Another problem of building a fortress around your heart is that it attracts treasure hunters, some of whom are very ruthless in their quest to breach your defenses and steal your heart. Narcissists in particular are experts at finding their way into your fortress and pillaging the valuables which you keep hidden. Once they’ve taken what they wanted, they leave and we are left alone in our empty fortress, our cries of pain echoing around us, but no one outside can hear us.
We need to use an experience like that to inspire us to break free from the prison of silence of our own making and embrace the openness beyond. It’s frightening. What if, even though the pain is unbearable, we are better off staying in an empty fortress than risk going outside? What if we are not welcome in the world outside? What if the monsters who live there eat us? Is it not better to live alone and in pain, than to not live at all?
The problem with playing hide and seek in life, is that if you are the one doing the hiding, and you find a really good hiding place, people get bored of trying to find you, they stop looking, then gradually forget about you, until no one knows you’re hiding, so no one knows you’re still waiting to be found. You may even end up dying in your hiding place. So why not come out come out where ever you are and draw some attention to yourself.
What if the world outside welcomes us? What if the monsters there aren’t monsters at all? And what if they are, but we can conquer them? What if by venturing out into the world and risking our lives doing it we find treasures beyond compare? What if we can find the love which was stolen from us, and find so much of it that life becomes a joyous experience?
I’ve lived in that fortress, retreated from the world, felt the loneliness and pain of it, been pillaged by Narcissists, and left to die frightened, alone and scared with no one hearing my cries, and I lay in the emptiness for many years, in an almost catatonic state, until I didn’t care about anything anymore. That’s when it dawned on me that if I didn’t care, why not venture outside? If the pain of living was too much and I would rather not live anymore, why not risk it? Have an adventure… if it kills me, then it’s win/win however I look at it.
So I ventured out of my shell and… what a beautiful world I found! Why had I stayed in my fortress for so long!?!
And I began blogging, sharing who I am, bit by bit, tentative steps at first, then getting a bit bolder as my efforts brought life energy to me, love, and the more love I received the more I had to give. My heart returned to me, open, bleeding and vibrating with pain and joy. It was weird and something you only experience by allowing yourself to have the experience.
I struggle every day to keep at it. It’s a very bumpy ride. A healing process. Therapeutic. I still have issues to resolve, and fears to face, and… you know, human stuff. It’s a challenge, and that challenges spurs me on. Just keep going.
There are moments when I think – I have nothing left to share. Moments which pass when I tell myself – so share that, share that you have nothing to share, share it all, the ups and downs, the ins and outs, the fullness and emptiness, the all and the nothing. The reward is in the doing. In doing you see, and what you see… is beautiful!
You learn to love yourself, and that love fills you and then overflows.
I blog the way I do, because it reflects who I am. Your blog is a living breathing expression of who you are, how you do it is completely up to you, as only you know how to be yourself. And if you’re not sure how to be yourself, blogging helps you to discover it, it helps you to discover yourself, and as you discover yourself you find others too, and they invite you to discover them… and the energy fills you up and overflows, backwards and forwards, and out into the world.
“If you think you are too small to make a difference, try sleeping with a mosquito.” ― Dalai Lama XIV
I’m not comparing you or your blog to a mosquito… I love that quote. When I was a child I used to love singing loudly when I was happy. If my mother – a Narcissist and professionally trained singer (of course!) – caught me singing she would compare the sound of my voice to a mosquito, meaning I was annoying her and had to shut up. I allowed her to censor and silence me. No more! I am buzzing away now, and if my voice bothers someone, they can block their ears and move out of range. I’m a feisty mosquito and will not be squashed! Mosquito now joins Cockroach as my animal totem.