I’m a binge watcher. Every time I finish a show, I start another and I get lost in their world a while. It was the Walking Dead for a while, now it’s Grey’s Anatomy. Dr. Yang rocks my world. She is focused, determined, bad-ass, and incredibly weak in her strength. Something about that kind of gorgeous contradiction draws me in. I want to take a page out of her book because I feel like child sometimes, and I’m over it.
In relationships, past and present, I have often felt like a child. For a very long time I was unable to pin down the exact cause of this feeling, but I have been driving to the gym and parks lately and things have become a little clearer. Thinking back to the night before Valentines I remember that feeling so clearly, confusion, shame, anger. It’s how I used to feel when my mom was mad at me for no reason. It’s the same as I felt the night I got all dressed up and ignored. I had no idea why it hurt so much and it took forever to figure it out, but I felt like a child. This empty gut feeling that I am never enough, that doing what I want or what I need is not allowed in an understood way. It’s such an odd unsettling feeling. Now that I’ve nailed it down I can think over dozens of examples, just times when I felt inadequate (but that’s not the right word). Times when my breath was unusually shallow and I couldn’t quite get a full breath. That feeling when I know I’m breaking some unwritten rule or displeasing an authority. Rather than evaluate it and give myself space to feel it, I instead called myself crazy, blamed myself for it. It’s a cycle of self-loathing that I began to enter. It was going to kill me. One of many things in those times that was going to kill me. But I never really learned to listen to my gut. And there’s something alluring about trying to earn affection. If it feels like you can win it, it keeps you determined to do so, but that’s not healthy. That’s not love.
Another way that I felt like a child is when I am second guessed. For a very long time, I would get so upset when packing and having him ask me ten thousand questions about did I pack this or that. Or when I’m looking for something and he asks me the most basic places to check as if I wouldn’t have thought of them. The constant cautions of don’t do this, be careful of that, as if I have no idea how to navigate the basic world on my own. It’s very frustrating to me. But after some thought about it, I realize that these are all my issues. Maybe I don’t feel mature and responsible enough, or maybe I’m not secure enough in what I want to do that I being pushed about it hits me harder than others.
After being blamed for all of someone else’s decisions, I feel I have to redouble my efforts to take responsibility for my own. For some reason it’s easier to take the blame when I know I didn’t actually do it. I am the owner of my own mind. No one makes me feel like a child, or like I’m not acceptable, I allow them to. No one can make me believe that I am inadequate if I don’t let them. I am the captain of this ship, baby, and it’s time I start manning it a little better. Instead of getting high from an outside source, I need to make myself high. The sun, the grass, trails, adventure, my son, the gym, these are my drugs. I’ll get high off my energy when I’m near them; and when I’m not, I’ll get high on the reserves.