The last couple of weeks I have had feelings of being controlled, it’s an insight I have never had before. Therapy helps me see so much about myself I used to dismiss or didn’t even see. Like my friend K. told me, EMDR is a magical thing. And it truly is. My brain has been making so many connections the last two weeks, my body reacts to it. There is a tug of war going on in my body and mind and it’s exhausting. For the first time I’m truly breaking free and I can feel the shackles and chains, rattle and break. I want to take control over my life and my body screams “Danger! Must not take control or I will suffer abuse.”
When you grow up with a parent who has narcissistic personality disorder, you don’t grow up to eventually live your own life. You don’t develop as you need to and you don’t learn to stand on your own two feet. You don’t learn to find your own identity and place in this world. And you definitely do not grow up to have your own emotions, thoughts, opinions and feelings. You are brainwashed from the moment you are born and this is hard for most people to understand. It sounds like I grew up in a cult and my mother is the leader.
I learnt at a very early age to be an adult, to take responsibility. Not just my responsibility, but that of the whole world. Spending so much time around people from different older generations I grew up with the bullshit of “well that’s just how things were, I was raised that way too”. No. It’s abuse and neglect and a lot of people can’t or refuse to acknowledge that it’s wrong, by making it right. There are a lot of people out there in the world, continuing the cycle of abuse within families but also with “willing participants”. I say willing participants, because I allowed people to abuse me until I sought help. To be abused is all I knew, in order to survive I kept this cycle going in my life. Despite the fact I had to grow up, real fast. I was a child who needed people to tell her what to do. If there is one thing toxic people love to do (in my case, a few toxic women who were old enough to be my mother/grandmother), it’s to take control of others in any shape or form. It’s the perfect toxic match.
These last two weeks I have started to see how my traumas control my life and I started to feel that everything I have ever learnt about myself is not true. I am slowly learning to take control and to take care of myself. To take responsibility for myself, instead of for others. It’s a frightening process and my body protests by going in to freeze response constantly. This time, I notice. This time, I can listen to it. And this time, I don’t feel the same.
Yesterday I took control, by not waiting for someone when I had an appointment at the gym. I decided I didn’t have to wait for an eternity, if they weren’t there. I went to do my warm-up first. It turned out they had an emergency and someone else managed the gym yesterday. I took control here, I didn’t give it away by waiting forever. I listened to my music through my computer speakers for the first time, instead of my headphones at home. Because I can. Because it’s my home. There is no one to get angry with me because I enjoy my music. I took control, in my own home. Recently I signed up for an Alpha course, to learn the basics of Christianity because I was not allowed to believe as a child. I have always believed in God and I want to learn more now. I also signed up for an online course to learn to illustrate. Because it’s part of me and I want to grow. I am in control.
I am in control of my own life. And I will fight to keep it.
Love & Light, Sandra