This week i got some real clarity as i wrote out an inventory on primarily my relationship with my husband but also with my boys.
I listed my resentments & hurts, looked deeply at how they affected my self esteem, security, finances, sex & personal relations and then I wrote out my part in the hurt and resentment. It was illuminating to say the least. What i saw clearly when i was done reviewing it with a friend (took about 4 hours) was that my "stories" about my hurts and resentments were just that, stories, not true, not real.
They were full of blame and fantasy and delusion, The primary ones of "he is withholding from me" and "not showing up for me" were merely perspective, viewpoint, interpretation, story. When i listed my part I saw selfishness and entitlement, it felt like a little girl trying to get others to recognize her, shower her with love and attention. Not there is anything wrong with receiving, it is quite wonderful as we all know, but to think that i need it, and if i don't get it then something is wrong and it's a problem and i am incomplete is to not know my own nature, my own fullness, source, presence.
It was exactly the opposite as the prayer - Lord grant that i may seek rather to comfort than to be comforted, to understand than to be understood, to loved than to be loved, for it is by self forgetting that one finds.
When i see clearly that the stories i've been circulating and believing are not true AND i take responsibility for the misunderstanding underneath my actions, it all starts to crumble like a house of cards.. my ideas of who my husband is, who my sons are, the images the mind creates, images of myself, all mere shadows, it's a very small life that's created but as the image shatters reality presents itself. It feels like my heart opens, there is a feeling of lightness and joy, there is softness, compassion, humor, love and tenderness.
Here is where Presence begins, i can actually be here now, not in the past, stuck in a story, in a fantasy that has a set pattern of withdrawal, protection, selfishness, childish behavior. Now i am actually available, here, rather than caught up in what i need from you, or lack or seeing what is as a problem.
Now I am available to source, God, light, presence, fullness, aliveness, what ever you want to call it.. i can feel it now, i can rest in it, it is actually what I am, this awareness, clarity, things become clear here.
When things got clear I saw a few things.. the stories i've been running with are not true.
i am actually not in need, i am the fullness, there is a tremendous capacity to flow this love that I am ..
No matter how "others" are in any given moment, doing what i like or not, i can rest in presence, truth, stay in my heart, breathe, feel the love that maintains and sustains all life, feel it here now and let that be the operating force that lives this life called JoAnne.
Possibilities beyond reactivity opened up, like kindness, tenderness, compassion, inner softness, humor, innocence, wonder, curiosity.
A teacher of mine recently said, awakening is really just about deep relaxation. This is not new but it is deepening daily and I am profoundly grateful.