Hold Onto It But Not With Your Hands

Should I go backwards or forwards – start at the end which isn’t really an end or start at the beginning which isn’t really a beginning?

Let’s jump into the middle and see where we end up – advice from my mind.

Sometimes I climb the walls and lie on the ceiling… and sometimes I use a ladder (not the one which collapse under me because I don’t trust it anymore) to paint the ceiling.

This ceiling

Once that was done and the mayhem I caused doing it was cleaned up enough for me to decide it was clean enough… (it’s only going to get dusty and dirty again, and require cleaning again, so a bit of whateverness in my housekeeping is a logical approach) …I took that chill pill known as I’m done for today and went online to see what the rest of the world had been up to during that time – this can be risky as it may end up with a shit I wish I hadn’t looked feeling.

But that day this crazy world hadn’t gone off the rails more than usual in the interim… I could stay chill.

I came across an interesting post on the hero archetype – Astrodynamics: The Astrological Hero’s Journey – which started off sharing an excerpt from an article from elsewhere (which I didn’t bother to click and read because it was on huffpost) about the hero archetype, then went on to discuss the article, the phases of the hero’s journey, and possible clues to spotting your own inner hero path in your astrology chart.

I love that astrologer’s writing, but I did piss off her sister a while ago (her sister misunderstood me – that’s a very me experience as I’m a confusing person) so I try to contain myself when on her blog. I’m hesitant to even ‘Like’ her posts now. Henry Rollins, save me!

The whole thing seemed synchronistic to read as I’d just finished my Teenager in Paris series… certain aspects of that time fit nicely into a certain phase of the Hero’s Journey – Rupture and Underworld Descent, but the bit which caught my attention was the mention of the Mentor phase.

When I was younger I was desperately seeking not Susan but a mentor. I totally bought into the idea of “when the pupil is ready the teacher appears”… except as a pupil I never seemed ready ever for anything let alone for a teacher to appear – not my idealised version of a teacher anyway.

All the teachers I met and chased after were the wrong kind of teacher. I have a lot of stories of me and the wrong kind of teacher. I almost joined a cult – I did a trial run of it and that was enough for me. They didn’t accept my ending the association and their pursuit was relentless nagging – not the best tactic to win me over.

Took me ages to realise that they were the right kind of teacher for someone like me who learns things better the hard way or who walks the path of learning who I don’t want as a teacher, who I don’t want as a mentor, who I don’t want to be.

One time met some self-appointed guru type in a metaphysical bookstore in London (Watkins Books) who said I was the pupil who was ready for a teacher like him and for a price I could join him in his cloud cuckoo land. By that time I was fed up of desperately seeking and told him thanks but definitely no thanks. He was very insistent, luckily I have more stubborn than can comfortably fit into one person and when someone is being insistent my stubborn turns itself up to 11.

Always remember that gurus and heroes are human beings first and foremost… that’s why I like the Dalai Lama, he never forgets nor lets others forget that he’s human even when the world keeps wanting him to be everything except a human being.

“People take different roads seeking fulfillment and happiness. Just because they’re not on your road doesn’t mean they’ve gotten lost.”


― The Dalai Lama XIV

Sometime later I ended up on another astrologer’s blog and then their Facebook page, and spotted an Fb post also discussing a version of the concept of the hero’s journey.

That astrologer shared an excerpt from an interview he’d given with one of those dudes who changed his name to a something-Ananda…

I’m always a bit wary of Westerners who do and have done that, not because of them (although his Wiki bio page did outline some reasons to be wary of him and his Ananda status, he said it was all a misunderstanding…) but because of me and something which happens in my mind.

Perhaps due to having natal Jupiter conjunct Uranus which (also aspect my natal Mercury = the mind) one astrologer, Bill Streett called the aspect of – The Seekers of the Divine Plan (I’d link you to that post but it’s vanished into error 404 territory now). I get starstruck, go into hero-worship mode and become very gullible – this person knows everything and I must download them into my mind… which later gets the watch your hero fall and crash to the ground treatment – Virus alert!

I still have this tendency, so my mind has put in place some safety guard rails to stop me from going off the deep end and having to learn that painful lesson all over again.

“Half of life is fucking up, the other half is dealing with it.”


― Henry Rollins

The interview Q & A which the astrologer shared was about how those with many difficult aspects in their charts tend to be more compassionate than those with mainly easy aspects in their natal charts.

Interview Q: Why is it that the kindest, most compassionate people I’ve met tend to be the ones with the difficult horoscopes, with the most painful karmas?

Interview A: Because the people who have the worst aspects, tons of squares and oppositions, are people who have suffered a great deal. And people who have suffered a great deal are usually very kind people. You see, one of the mistakes that many modern western astrologers make is they believe that squares or oppositions are due to “bad karma.” And they’re not. Many times we induce difficult squares into a chart when we’re born in order to accomplish something.

One of the most common examples of that is, look for someone who has four or five or six squares to Pluto, and you will find someone who is extremely concerned about mankind as a race. Not just two or three people, but mankind as a race. He or she will have a lot of pain, a lot of suffering and anguish, and the square will manifest, but it will also tend to give them enough energy to accomplish or override the chart, enough energy to do what has to be done. But those sorts of people usually have a lot of deep feelings; a lot of squares bring a lot of sensitivity, both good and bad. It’s the people who have nothing but sextiles and trines who are usually incredibly indifferent.”

– excerpt from interview between Ray Grasse and Kriyananda

Now I have a lot of difficult aspects in my natal chart, including a couple with Pluto involved, so I’d be very tempted to believe what had been said without questioning it and consider myself to be one of those “special” people being talked about who had had a hard time and had become better for it.

However I’ve been down that road many times before and it leads nowhere or not where I want to go again because the walk back from it is long and tedious. You’re basically following someone else’s mental process and way of processing their own story… which can hold pieces of your own life puzzle, but at some point you have to go your own way without a map or coordinates.

So this time I decided to look at the natal chart of the guy who made that statement, the something-Ananda dude. And lo and behold… guess who had a chart full of hard aspects, he had one of those Grand Cross aspects which make a chart look like a very hard mathematical problem, so of course hard aspects = most compassionate hero in the universe according to him because he had that and he wanted to be super better for it.

How very human of him! His answer was basically all about himself, his life, his chart… not about others and their life, their chart.

Gurus and heroes, those who have decided (or who have had it decided for them by others) to walk that kind of path sometimes lose their human identity for the sake of the journey. Perhaps they want to escape from their human… leave it behind them like a pile of clothes on a beach.

I keep having dreams of things I need to do

And waking up and not following through

But it feels like I haven’t slept at all

When I wake to a silence and she’s facing the wall

Posters of Dylan and of Hemingway

An antique compass for a sailor’s escape

She says you just can’t live this way

And I close my eyes and I never say

I’m still having dreams

And on the worst days

When it feels like life weighs ten thousand tons

I sleep with my passport

One eye on the back door

So I can always run

I can get up, shower, and in half an hour I’ll be gone

– lyrics from I Am Disappeared by Frank Turner

But often the most interesting story is the human one… the one we want to leave behind us, hide, keep disappeared.

The part of our story which is uniquely us.

Lots of people have scars on their chin, but how we got ours is uniquely us. Mine is thanks to me tightrope walking on a stair banister and slipping off of it, not once but twice because I didn’t learn my lesson the first time.

Lots of people want to stand out from the crowd, but are afraid to do it properly by being themselves. They want to do it the way other people did it which has now become safe and normal, and that way they’ll stand out while avoiding the risks of standing out. Follow the map someone else created by wandering off the beaten track. Except someone else had to do it first… and you’re not them. You are you, though… why not just do what you do and see what happens, share what happens, all the mess…

“Knowledge without mileage equals bullshit.”


― Henry Rollins

Rewind to about 24 hours before climbing a ladder to paint the ceiling and what came after that…

I spent the evening with Frank Turner and Henry Rollins – who puts the punk in punctual.

No, I don’t know them personally, they didn’t come around to my place… except through the TV screen, which in some ways is like letting someone into your place, hanging out with them in person… only better because you only get the best bits, the edited version, and can switch them off when you’re done, no awkward um will you leave now, I’ll get yer coat moments to the relationship and interaction.

First up was Frank Turner in Get Better: A Film About Frank Turner.

The part of that which stood out the most to me…

apart from him mentioning his birthday was in December which then had me trying to guess if he was a Sagittarius or a Capricorn (yes, I could have looked it up immediately, but what’s the fun of doing thatfirst the torture of not knowing, guessing, are you wrong omg are you wrong, what if you’re right omg what if you’re right…). Based on what he and others said about him in the documentary – works like a maniac, is the boss even if he appears to work as part of a team, has to do things his own way even if that means he doesn’t succeed, has to regularly tell himself he’s successful yet he’s never truly convinced of it… I figured he was more likely a Cap. He is.

…was something he said at the end about how he was living a life which was the one he wasn’t supposed to be living. That was an odd thing to say… which is why it stood out. I get where he was coming from, but… still, dude, you are living the life you’re supposed to be living, we all do. Sometimes it is better to tell ourselves we’re not, but we are.

My partner is a fan of his music, there was a time when “The Road” played incessantly in the car and confused the eff out of me while I was map reading, although compass directions are better than left and right – my mind finds the compass better than L & R, and the clock (nine o’clock from you… wtf!?!) when it comes to directions.

To the east to the east

The road beneath my feet

To the west to the west

I haven’t got there yet

And to the north to the north

Never to be caught

To the south to the south

My time is running out

Ever since my childhood I’ve been scared I’ve been afraid

Of being trapped by circumstance and staying in one place

So I always keep a small bag full of clothes carefully stored

Somewhere secret somewhere safe

And somewhere close to the door

– lyrics from The Road by Frank Turner

After Frank left, in walked Henry Rollins – Henry Rollins: Keep Talking, Pal

My partner is also a fan of Henry Rollins.

But I’m the one who chose the two shows we watched. I was just scrolling through Prime then Frank Turner said watch me, and then Henry Rollins said watch me too. So I did. That’s how I pick what to watch, it tells me to watch it, because any other method, especially the research one – looking stuff up online before watching which relies on the opinions of others, tends to work out badly… it’s like making plans.

Henry had me in stitches when he discussed how his intensity tends to freak people out, and how when people email him he never knows how to respond, ends up being weirdly stiff and formal. I could relate very much to that part… as well as the eating the eyeball because someone thought they could freak him out and he saw it as a contest to be the freakiest freak and freak the attempting to freak freaker out.

Henry Rollins is an Aquarius… I have Mercury in Aquarius – playing freak games to win (but winning isn’t really the goal, not the conventional version of winning anyway) seems to be a part of the sign.

Early on he did this whole routine about gender equality and the quickest way to get it was for all the women to go on a killing spree, kill 75% of men, mainly old white dudes. He’s obviously a man… and therefore doesn’t realise that a world populated by a majority of women isn’t a Utopia for other women. Women don’t do sisterhood the way men do brotherhood but men usually don’t know that unless they trans.

There’s this recurring sketch from a UK comedy show… wish I could recall names and stuff… where this female character is all stupid, sweet, around men but once the men are not around she’s an intelligent bitch from hell. Very funny. Spot on.

The patriarchy may suck ass, but the matriarchy isn’t all roses in bloom and dainty ladies picking them and crying when they prick themselves on a thorn, with other ladies being all compassionate and shit about it.

I grew up in a mini matriarchy, so I’m crazy levels of biased about it. My mother was a devouring mother who definitely considered herself to be a hero, the hero of all heroes – a saint and martyr. My father used to call her Margaret Thatcher, because he knew it needled her and provoked a violent emotional reaction out of her.

My mother was of the devouring kind and my father was mainly of the absent kind – seems I’m not the only one as this post – The Absent Father and The Devouring Mother – on my blog gets a lot of internet type of mileage.

My story and archetype was not of the Hero kind – I preferred Rebels. Underdog rebels, not the hero rebels, misfits who eventually become normalised and the thing to be to fit in.

a hero/mentor from my childhood

Maybe that has something to do with having Black Moon Lilith in the 10th house of social status, public image, career, and stuff along those lines. She’s square natal Pluto Rx in the 1st.

I’m still not sure about the way astrologers look at and interpret the 10th house.

In recent times the way I read what astrologers write has changed – I see it more now as being less about the planet, aspects, transits, whatever and more about the astrologer’s personal story – how they see things is how they’re experiencing their own personal journey. They just prefer to tell their personal story as though they’re not telling a personal story at all. They prefer to say “you” rather than say “I, me” – it’s safer that way or so they’ve told themselves.

It’s particularly noticeable when reading the posts of an astrologer who blogs regularly, daily, tracking transits and interpreting them for others and comparing them with other astrologers who do the same. While they sometimes agree on certain things …

Such as that BMLilith is the dangerous woman who thwarts convention and is willing to say things that others don’t say out loud and get stigmatised for it – taboo prison or stigmatised liberation?

They often take those things in different directions – some astrologers doom & gloom it, others pixie-fairy-stardust it, some are you get what you see and choose (my favourite one since when I see nightmare that’s what I get, when I see easy it’s Saul Goodman, but it took me ages to realise how much I created my own reality paradigm, and then more of an age to figure out how to work it consciously), and some just by the book it – blame the book not them when it’s wrong for you, better still blame yourself.

“The moon will never lie to anyone. Be like the moon. No one hates the moon or wants to kill it. The moon does not take antidepressants and never gets sent to prison. The moon never shot a guy in the face and ran away. The moon has been around a long time and has never tried to rip anyone off. The moon does not care who you want to touch or what color you are. The moon treats everyone the same. The moon never tries to get in on the guest list or use your name to impress others. Be like the moon. When others insult or belittle in an attempt to elevate themselves, the moon sits passively and watches, never lowering itself to anything that weak. The moon is beautiful and bright. It needs no makeup to look beautiful. The moon never shoves clouds out of its way so it can be seen. The moon needs not fame or money to be powerful. The moon never asks you to go to war to defend it. Be like the moon.”


― Henry Rollins, Solipsist

That’s the way with all of us really… everything is seen through the filter of us.

Want to see things differently – change your filter of you.

Easier said than done.

People like Henry Rollins can help you do that if you let them – he may say freaky provocative things which your mind may reject, but if you let the right one in it could change how you perceive things, yourself, others, and that can ripple into changing how you experience life.

Humans often reject what’s really good for them because they’ve been programmed to only accept what’s bad for them and see it as the good stuff (Alice Miller called this Poisonous Pedagogy)- the programming gets passed down generation after generation and so we may feel like we’re betraying our ancestors if we think they were full of shit, not continue to carry that shit around, pass it on, want to give ourselves an enema and not refill ourselves with that shit afterwards.

“I don’t want to pass through life like a smooth plane ride. All you do is get to breathe and copulate and finally die. I don’t want to go with the smooth skin and the calm brow. I hope I end up a blithering idiot cursing the sun – hallucinating, screaming, giving obscene and inane lectures on street corners and public parks. People will walk by and say, “Look at that drooling idiot. What a basket case.” I will turn and say to them, “It is you who are the basket case. For every moment you hated your job, cursed your wife and sold yourself to a dream that you didn’t even conceive. For the times your soul screamed yes and you said no. For all of that. For your self-torture, I see the glowing eyes of the sun! The air talks to me! I am at all times!” And maybe, the passers by will drop a coin into my cup.”


― Henry Rollins

After everything they did for you to make your life possible, to make the world a better place for you so that you didn’t have to suffer like they did, and you’re never going to be able to win that competition because they’re dead now and that’s how you checkmate…

And this is how you repay them, show gratitude, by rebelling against them and their version of reality which you must live out and confirm, pass on to your children if you have any and you must because you owe your family forever… you should be ashamed of yourself!

Henry Rollins reminds me a bit in what he says of what was said by R.D. Laing – the punk of psychiatry who, along with A. Esterson conducted a radical study into Schizophrenia which annoyed the establishment, rocked the boat, created waves. They concluded that sometimes it’s not the individual who is crazy, but the individual gets labeled that way so the rest of the group can label themselves as sane.

“What we call ‘normal’ is a product of repression, denial, splitting, projection, introjection and other forms of destructive action on experience. It is radically estranged from the structure of being. The more one sees this, the more senseless it is to continue with generalized descriptions of supposedly specifically schizoid, schizophrenic, hysterical ‘mechanisms.’ There are forms of alienation that are relatively strange to statistically ‘normal’ forms of alienation. The ‘normally’ alienated person, by reason of the fact that he acts more or less like everyone else, is taken to be sane. Other forms of alienation that are out of step with the prevailing state of alienation are those that are labeled by the ‘formal’ majority as bad or mad.”


― R.D. Laing, The Politics of Experience/The Bird of Paradise

How did I end up there?

How did we end up where we are now?

Why are the lunatics running the asylum?

You really don’t want the answer to that because then you’d have to do the kind of thinking about yourself which you’re desperately seeking Susan to blame for the condition your condition is in.

We’re all more personally responsible and powerful than we… want to admit to being.

Mars and Pluto are in opposition atm…

Just last week I saw a blogger post about how much they hate (too strong a word for this blogger to use, but I’m paraphrasing or something like that…) superficial fake niceness in relationships.

They didn’t like the people who did it in their social circle. They didn’t like doing it when interacting with those people, but it was a must to keep everything pleasant and ticking like it always did. They didn’t want to keep doing it but they didn’t know what to do about it. Saying no to it would mean things might get a bit unpleasant… so they’re just going to keep doing it until it stops on its own.

While this blogger was seemingly talking about a situation which went on offline… they could have been discussing online social media group etiquette.

Join a blogging group, “Like” everything your group posts even if you don’t bother to read it, make sympathetic comments on posts seeking sympathy, make congratulatory comments on posts seeking congratulations, tell everyone in your group how great they are and how grateful you are for them… turn blogging into a chore, a job you do to make a living, fit in, lose your soul one comment, Like, and post at a time, but tell yourself it’s for the best, better, and so on.

Never reveal your true self because that could get you into trouble… or maybe it could lead you to a place where you finally understand that you being you as is – that’s what it’s really about!

“A rose trapped inside a fist.”


―Henry Rollins, The Portable Henry Rollins

Are you a rose trapped inside a fist or a fist trapped inside a rose?

I’m done for today…

Thank you Frank… keep on turning

Thank you Henry… keep on rolling

11 comments

  1. Your Susan reference have me a chuckle. It’s like I can’t say “damn it” without thinking/saying “Janet”. Condition my condition is in rings a bell too…a song? Maybe I’ll look it up later.
    I’m interested in astrology. I’ve wanted to learn more. I did one of those free online chart things and got my results. I looked at this circle and lines and symbols and colors and thought “pretty”. Then I thought “too complicated for my brain, maybe later”. I haven’t gotten to later yet.
    I’m a Pisces. That fits. My daughters are older-Capricorn, younger-Sagittarius. Talk about women living together…sheesh!
    Fun post as always! I love how your mind works💌

    Like

    • Thank you, Angie 🙂

      Yup, it’s a line from a song. It was used in The Big Lebowski – hearing it in that is how it got stuck in my mind. The mind loves to play with words, so if something is catchy it’ll just get stuck in there and get played with.

      I’m a Capricorn. Capricorns are naturally bossy, and Sagittarius is one of those signs which tends to refuse to be bossed and will tell Capricorn where to shove it. Sagittarius tends to blurt tactless stuff right out, and while Capricorn likes the blunt honesty it may find that Sagittarius talks too much. It’s actually a good combo but there will be lots of energetic slamming of doors (Sag) and brooding silences (Cap). Pisces would like to live in peace, so all the Cap and Sag lively debate will drive Pisces slowly nuts and make them want to escape the madness (or escape into a peaceful madness) 😉

      Astrology is a fun language to learn to speak. It’s also quite a useful tool for getting to know yourself and others. I prefer it to psychology as astrology doesn’t focus so much on what’s “wrong” with you, what needs to be “fixed”, it is more accepting of natural flow of beingness and human mess.

      For instance if you wake up feeling moody and don’t know why, checking the daily transits can offer an alternative way of looking at the mood – today you’re going to be pissed off because you need to be, it’s just your Moon getting rubbed the wrong way by transiting Mars. It’s an opportunity to feel your feels strongly and figure out whatever your system needs to be worked out of it.

      It isn’t as complicated as it looks. It just appears complicated so that people will think they need a professional to read their chart for them 😉 Pick a place to start, something you’d like to know more about yourself, a puzzle you’d like to solve, and go from there. Each planet represents a facet of self, and each of the slices of the circular pie represent a facet of life. Eg. The Moon is the feels zone, The Sun is ego and how you shine, Mars is the angry, Mercury is the mind and is the part which picks which songs and words get stuck in your head 😀

      Liked by 1 person

      • You totally nailed the dynamic with me & my daughters. It’s like you were in my house😲
        I did a little reading about different things like empty houses and what my moon(Cap) & rising(Aquarius) mean. There are so many sites with info.

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  2. I’m another Pisces. I’m glad to see you posting, even though you might have written a whole book and I would have missed that, not being here as much this week. Your mind is fascinating and your enthusiasm and ability to share your insights on astrology and life are amazing! 🙂

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    • Thank you, Melanie 🙂

      Reading is like eating – you can’t eat everything, and ideally you should eat/read what nourishes you on the day in the moment of eating/reading. My posts are a bit like a very messy stir-fry of random food, leftovers, some of which may have been in the fridge for years after their eat-by date and I’m not sure what it is anymore but I threw it in the stir-fry anyway. So… probably best not to eat it 😉 or at least not on a regular basis.

      Like

  3. 😁 I like your analogy of your posts with leftovers and fridge aged food Lol haha that why’s that my tummy churns sometimes but luckily I grew up on junk so my digestive tract is a resilient one.

    Sometimes I do get confused with the ideas in your posts but maybe getting confused is the idea, then I’d by any chance I find something useful in it, ah that’s a magic bean 😉

    Like

    • Thank you, Reverist 🙂

      For me personally writing posts is about just seeing what comes out, and then noticing what I need to notice – which is sometimes what didn’t come out but what stayed in.

      For those who read my posts, the magic bean approach is the best tactic 😉

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  4. I don’t know how to be anything but my true-self (which caused me lots of trouble with my pretentious in-laws). In blogging, I’m the real me, too. I may leave some things out for brevity, but those left-out things usually make their way to another blog at some time or another. 🙂

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    • That’s rather remarkable.

      It’s unusual for a child of narcissists to not have experience of wandering off the path of being true to self and trying to be someone else due to the pressure narcissist parents place upon their children to be all these other people for the sake of the narcissist parent.

      The typical narcissist parent tends to do a routine of “Look at Cindy, she’s so smart, ambitious and tall, why can’t you be more like Cindy” which means “You must become Cindy to be loved by me” – Cindy is the goal to reach and supersede if you are going to get the narc parental approval.

      Or “My child learned to talk when she was still in the womb, and was born with a master’s degree in English Lit.” which means “To be loved by me you must be who I say you are or else you’ll make me appear foolish for saying these wonderful things about you to the other parents and I would be very disappointed in you if you fail to support my story of you.”

      That’s the “Golden Child” routine, then there’s the “Scapegoat” routine which usually is about being the worst person ever so that the narc parent can compare themselves favourably using you. If you’re the scapegoat everything is your fault – you don’t actually have to do anything to get blamed for stuff. You become the enemy and baddie because that’s who the narc parent needs you to be for them to be who they want to be.

      If the narc parent has more than one child they usually give one child the Golden Child role and the other child gets the Scapegoat role, and the children at pitted against each other (triangulation).

      The child must compete with the narc parent’s creations, become who the parent has set them up to be or else the narc parent will rain hell down on the child, which can be as seemingly mild as they just don’t love you until you become the child they want you to be.

      Children tend to take the appeasement approach to survive the narc parent, which usually includes being a not-self, being untrue to self at least until you are old enough to get away from the narc parental influence and rule. Often the not-self is created by the child of narcissists to protect the true self from annihilation by the narc parent.

      Children of narcissists often go through a phase of being confused about who they really are, who is their true self.

      This is one of the best posts about being an ACoN – https://theinvisiblescar.wordpress.com/2013/04/14/surviving-the-narcissistic-parent-acons-adult-children-of-narcissists/ – very informative and deeply insightful

      Liked by 1 person

      • I’d say I was the Scapegoat kind, but I never understood how I was supposed to be anything but me. At the time, I thought “me” was the bad person who treated my “poor, long suffering mom” terribly, and that I was too stupid to reach my “wild imagination” goals.

        I did go through a phase of confusion and searching for who I really was. From my search, I learned that I never actually behaved in the ways they accused me of doing. I was always the real me, and I still am. I just believed something that was never true. I don’t know if I explained this to make sense. In other words, I never diverted from my true-self. I just believed the lie that my true-self was bad.

        Not only are my parents narcissists, but my mother-in-law was one, too. So when I became an adult, I had three narcs to deal with (she was a sneaky, manipulative narc with different tactics than my parents).

        However, I cannot tell you how HUGE the guilt was that I carried around for never being able to fulfill my parents needs and be who they wanted me to be. I knew I couldn’t be anything but me, and I thought that was a bad thing. The heavy guilt weighed on me for most of my life. I’m really much better now and have had closure with my past (except a little resentment left for my mother-in-law). Sometimes, I can’t even remember the things that happened (with my parents) until I read your blog posts. When the memory comes back, it doesn’t hurt anymore, and it almost feels like it happened to someone else. In other words, I’ve let go and forgiven. It helps that my parents have softened in their old age. Plus, I’ve learned when to humor them, when to ignore them and when to fight back.

        P.S. My mother-in-law never softened and died with her narcissism fully in tact. This is why sometimes I feel that resentment stir up when I have to deal with my husband’s siblings.

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