StLSass

Archive for May 2017

We all have issues and fears in our lives that stem from the events of our childhood. That is the condition of life. Unlearning the unknown fears of our pasts in order to stop the cycle of pain that they keep us in. That is true growth in life. I have talked openly before about having a fear of intimacy, which is a combination of the fear of abandonment and the fear of rejection. This deep seeded fear in my life stems from the events of my childhood.

My parents divorced when I was five years old, and my fears of abandonment, I believe, stem from the events surrounding my parents divorce. While both of my parents went above and beyond to be the best parents that they could be, nothing they could have done could stop the fact that I subconsciously felt abandoned by them in some way.

My fear of rejection stems from the sexual abuse that I went through, where I was constantly subjected to an abuser who rejected me publicly, but preyed on me privately. That not only created a constant feeling of being of rejected, but it also created a deep rooted feeling of worthlessness within me that, to this day, I find very hard to shake off at times.

While I have acknowledged these issues, their complications, and how they have shaped my life, I realized yesterday that I still have a lot of pain from these things that I have not yet fully embraced. You see, we are beings that are wired to run from painful situations, and to adapt in ways that keep us from ever really feeling our pain. However, those adaptions eventually start to manifest specific lessons in our life which are meant to bring us to the point where we can finally admit that the adapted version of ourselves, is not as great as the true version of ourselves, and bring us to the place where we are ready and willing to face the pain of our pasts once and for all. Another great gift of life, we are continuously being given opportunities to improve to be our best selves. HOWEVER, many times those lessons require truly diving into and FEELING our deep seeded childhood pains, and only through this process can we emerge from our cocoons to be the bright butterflies that we are.

In figuring myself out lately, I have noticed that I very much have anger and control issues. It was in trying to figure out the anger side that I brought myself to the point of realization that it was perhaps fueled by childhood pain. After continuing to think it through, it became increasingly obvious to me that I still have a lot of pain that has yet to be physically felt and released. So yesterday I sat, and for a minute I concentrated on that pit in the bottom of my stomach that comes up when I begin to think about certain parts of my childhood, the painful parts. I focused on that pain, and as it became heavier and heavier, I started to cry. Not just a weeping cry, no, as I continued to forge into the pain of my soul, I started bawling a river of tears. It was painful. Gut wrenchingly painful.

I thought about my parents and how mad I was at them for “abandoning” our family. I have never really acknowledged it to myself, but last night in my pain, I found myself so incredibly angry and in sort of this child like “Why would you do this to me??” fit of rage and pain. I continued to cry, and breathe, and sit in the pain for as long as my easily distracted mind could handle. When I started to get side tracked with other thoughts, I pushed myself back in the pain, since it was so readily available to me yesterday (due to the current planetary alignments). As I continued to sit there, I began to really understand some of the pain that I had.

I began to understand that I felt so sad and alone because I felt like no one really knew me.  When I really dug into why I felt as though no one really knew me, I began to realize it was because I felt that my mom never really knew me. I saw that my anger stemmed out of my lack of a relationship with my mother, because I felt as though I couldn’t open up to her as a child. My innate reaction as a child was to always pretend everything was fine, and to never talk about my feelings… because deep down, what I was feeling was abandoned.

What I later realized is that what triggered this avalanche of pain and feeling was actually Mother’s Day. I had a wonderful day with my mom on Mother’s Day. I actually had something I wasn’t sure if I was going to tell her or not, but as the day went on, I felt more and more at ease, and so I eventually told her. She did her mom thing, and was able to break through the wall that I always keep up that everything is okay, and she got to my truth. So what I finally realized yesterday as I worked my way through all of this pain, is that my mother has always been there for me. She has done so much for me, all in the name of being a loving and supportive mother. She was always there, she never abandoned me. My feeling of abandonment was created by my own mind as a child when for whatever rhyme or reason I decided that my mother was no longer my ally, or my confidant, or my rock, and I began to shut her out of my life. I am the one who created my own sense of abandonment by isolating my true self from my mom.

As I came to that moment of realization, that I had created this strained relationship with my mother all on my own, the phrase “I chose this life” began to set in with me.

With all of my study into astrology and my soul’s purpose and mission in this lifetime, I have come to a great understanding, which is that my soul chose this exact journey for me to learn everything I needed to learn while I am on earth. The experiences that I have grown from, experienced pain from, and found joy in, were all put in my path to further my soul’s journey. I have come to understand that I truly did chose this life path for myself. So when I felt those words come up, “I chose this life”, I just continued to repeat those words out loud, to really let that sink into my soul.

Here I am writing this the next day, and I just had the realization that this whole experience is quite literally me uncovering one of the greatest masks of my ego. It is me  coming to an understanding of how the story of what I told myself as a child vs the reality of what was actually happening, shaped my misguided belief system that kept me from enjoying the pure love and light that both of my parents have always had for me, and in turn kept me stuck in my own self created world of pain and hurt. A pain that was so deep that rather than feel it, and learn from it, I have spent many years running from it, pretending I was okay, which only served to further the cycle of pain.

Funny thing pain is like that. When we tell ourselves that we are okay, and that we are fine, when we are in fact in pain, we then are essentially creating a place for that pain to live. We give that pain life. Our life thus attracts more pain, because that is the vibe that we are sending out into the world. We drag out our own pain when we don’t face it head on. However, when we do embrace it, feel it, let it hurt, and let it out… then we learn our truth behind that pain, and then we begin to understand it. Once we understand it, we can learn from it… and finally move on and be done with that it!

The only way out is through.

There are no shortcuts in life growth.

We all must learn to stop being afraid of pain.

We should welcome it with open arms.

Sit with your pain.

FEEL it.

Let it hurt.

Let it make you mad.

Scream.

Cry.

Be sad.

Then understand what exactly it is that is making you sad.

Once you get deep into that pain, it becomes easier to see what it is that is truly the problem.

Continue asking yourself why, until you have your answer.

It will come.

“As I stand in a puddle of tears, I give thanks; for without pain, I would not grow.” – @j.ironword

Give thanks. You are exactly where you chose to be on this journey of life.

You chose this life.

The sooner we all understand that we are not victims of our circumstances, but rather the creators of our destiny; the sooner we can flip that switch and realize our amazing power to achieve anything we desire in this world comes through our ability to face our own pain and grow our way through it.

Sending so much light and love to you all this week. There is a lot of active energy going on in the world right now, and I hope that you all take that extra energy and use it to confront some of your own pain… and that through that you find great healing, so you are able to better shine your light. Our world needs your light right now. We need to stop furthering the pain. It is time.

❤ Christine

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Alright guys, I am effectively putting an end to my 365 days of writing project. Only in the sense that I am no longer going to post by arbitrarily numbered days. I have found myself becoming more put off by the fact that I am failing at posting everyday, and thus my perfectionism is now kicking in and wanting me to just stop posting all together. So I need to find my comfortable middle zone.

What I have learned: Posting everyday is very hard. That requires a lot of dedication and time, and I sadly just don’t have time for it everyday. HOWEVER, in posting as much as I have lately, I have shown myself that I can post quite a bit more frequently than never, lol. So I will continue to write as much as I can, thats what I can promise for now.

I also am excited to start writing more topics that are true to my blog name: STL Sass. As a sassy St. Louisan, it has been a goal of mine to bring forth a voice that show cases all that this city has to offer, with a bit of a sass. So, starting soon, I will posting reviews of STL locations, and insight on all great things St. Louis.

I feel like when I started the year, I was searching for my voice, to speak anything. So I started writing anything. That was a necessary step for me, just to open up and get talking. Now I’ve got the talking down, so I want to shift towards more focused posts, that are relevant.

I realize this post itself is a bit all over the place, but what I am trying to say is that I believe I have found my voice.

It was hidden deep for awhile under a girl who felt misunderstood and kind of alone. Sharing my life struggles last week with everyone really helped me to complete the process that I have been in for the past few years. Which is the process of learning how to love myself and how to have compassion for myself. That is a never ending journey, however, I want to thank you all for staying with me these past few months with my sporadic posting which was really more diary style than anything else.

I didn’t know what I wanted or needed, but I just knew I wanted to be heard. You all listened. So thank you for that.

I am going to continue posting my sporadic life thoughts, but also adding in the more St. Louis focused posts as well. I am working on getting a few St. Louis writers to also write for the blog.

Lots of great things happening right now, and some I can’t even talk about yet, but that I will post about as soon as I can!

Bottom line: Thank you all. Great things are coming. I am so excited to see where life goes from here.

Have a good weekend!

– Christine

 

Okay, time to get real honest and gritty about myself with you guys. (Yes, more honest than yesterday even.) I have been becoming very self-aware lately and I have a confession … I’ve never openly admitted this to anyone, not even my therapist. I can feel the fear welling up in my throat as I type … Oh well, here goes: I’ve cheated on every person I’ve ever had a relationship with.

Even the ones I considered to be really good relationships.

At some point, typically when a conflict was not addressed, I’d find myself being drawn to people outside the relationship, I’d start checking out of my current love and into a fantasy, and eventually the relationship would deteriorate and I would cheat. I used to blame it on the fact that I always dated terrible men or tell myself that if I had an urge to cheat, it just meant the relationship was never going to work out anyways.

However, when I cheated in my last relationship, which was with an incredible man, I was beyond upset with myself. I had even taken precautions to cut all ties with people who I knew I’d be most likely to be drawn to and took note to quickly end any thoughts of other people as soon as they entered my mind. Yet still, one night during a rough patch, I let myself get sucked into someone and I let it go too far. Despite my best efforts, and the fact that I was dating a wonderful man, I still cheated. When this happened I was devastated, and I felt as though I was simply living proof of the old adage: “Once a cheater, always a cheater.”

After spending the past few months in self-reflection mode, I now know that my cheating was actually manifested by the fact that I have a severe fear of intimacy. Which is the fear of rejection combined with the fear of abandonment on steroids basically. I am so afraid of being close to someone and it not working out or of them abandoning me that I self-sabotage my relationships in many ways. But eventually, particularly if there are problems in the bedroom, I cheat. (Spoiler alert: since I have a fear of intimacy, there are always problems in the bedroom, eventually).

As I was reading about the fear of intimacy, I read how victims of sexual abuse were more likely to act out sexually in relationships when the fear would surface, specifically by cheating. I was a victim of sexual abuse as a child. As painful as it was to read that, after thinking it over, it gave me my first sense of hope about the matter. That’s when I realized it wasn’t that I was once a cheater, always a cheater… this was just another side effect of childhood trauma, which I simply needed to unlearn. That’s slightly better… right? Right!

I am also realizing that because I was sexually abused at a young age, I discovered the power of sex before the power of love. And then, I never really developed the patience for true love. So as I was going through relationships in my life, when I would start to feel like I was falling in love, I would develop an impatience and move very quickly with people, particularly in the bedroom, because impatience was my defense against having to actually open up and be vulnerable.

Since I never got that to that true deep love level with anyone, due to my impatience, I learned to master the level that I was at. The level of intimacy fueled by sex. The level that is afraid of real intimacy. I mastered the art of what so many people today think is love, sex without true vulnerability. I have been accepting that level of “love” as true love my entire life. It wasn’t until I finally realized how much patience is required for true love that I discovered that I have never really experienced REAL love. That was a tough realization to swallow, but also possibly the biggest break through I’ve had thus far in trying to understand myself and love.

I say all of this because I know I am not alone. In today’s culture, many people have mastered the power of sex without vulnerability, maybe because many people also have a deep-rooted fear of truly being intimate with someone or maybe because of some other fear that has manifested in their life. To quote Beyoncé in Lemonade: “When did true love become illusive? No one I know has it.” That statement is so true. So many people think they have love, but they are only scratching the surface of what true love is.

True love itself is scary at first. It shines a light on our own darkness and faults and in order to truly master love, you must first love yourself, ugly parts and all. That is where a lot of people are going wrong, I believe. They aren’t fully acknowledging all of their own darkness because they are so afraid of facing those things and taking responsibility for their own actions. That’s the hard part of true love, but it is ultimately the best and most important part of life. Until we illuminate those issues and work to correct them, we aren’t truly living as our greatest selves, and we certainly aren’t capable of truly loving another.

So I guess this is me, facing my ugliness. I have a fear of intimacy and a propensity to act out sexually in relationships when I choose to give in to that fear. Now that I understand that about myself, I am hoping that in my next relationship, I will finally be able to overcome my fear, let myself be truly vulnerable with another person and possibly finally find true love in my life. I hope to finally disprove the “Once a cheater, always a cheater” theory, because I am in fact not a saying or cliché. I’m a real human being who has the ability to learn, grow and be better.

Cheers to being better.

– Christine

jojo-160526

P.S. This post originally appeared on Hobotrashcan.com on 5/26/16, because sometimes it takes a year of loving yourself before you are ready to truly share your truth. And sometimes you are lucky enough to be offered a way to anonymously write out what you are really feeling. I will forever be grateful to Hobotrashcan.com creator Joel Murphy for that opportunity.

Does anyone really know you? Like, all of you? Every dark secret and hidden truth that has made you who you are. Have you ever admitted all of those things to another person? Have you ever really admitted all of those things to yourself?

Until about 3 years ago, no one really knew me. Not my closest friends, not my family, hell, I barely even knew myself.

You see I had spent the better half of my life, lying to myself. Telling myself that I was okay, when in fact I was far from okay.

That’s just what I knew though. I knew I had to be okay, I had to be strong, I had to be perfect.

After years of keeping up my charade of perfection and lies, even to myself, I finally broke down.

It was a summer night, and I had just spent the evening with all of my closest girlfriends. Most of whom were now married, either with children, or with them on the way. In fact my best friend was pregnant at the time. After spending the evening with my girls, and celebrating everyone’s accomplishment, I went home, alone, to my small apartment.

As I walked into my apartment that night, I closed the door behind me, and then I just crumpled into a ball on the floor and started bawling my eyes out.

Everyone was so happy… but me.

I had so much happiness in my heart for all of my friends, but all it seemed to do was remind me of how unhappy I was with myself.

I sat there and cried for over an hour. I let my pain flow from deep within me, and I cried a river that night… a river of pain straight from my soul.

What I realized in that hour, was that I was upset because no one knew what I had really been though in my life. No one understood me, because I had never been able to be honest with the people in my life. I was too ashamed.

When I finally was able to pick myself up that night, I grabbed my notebook, and started writing. I started writing about how upset I was. I was upset because of what had happened to me in my life, and how I felt that it was my duty to keep my past a secret. Only, I didn’t want to keep this secret anymore. I didn’t want to be unhappy anymore.

Three weeks and one therapy session later, I told my two best friends my truth.

I was sexually abused as a child. I felt responsible for what happened, and therefore resolved to never tell anyone in my life about it. What I went through was confusing, lasted many years, and left me with a very distorted sense of self worth. I never believed that I deserved anything good in life after it. How could I? I was no longer perfect. I was tainted.

What happened when I told my two girlfriends my story, was very unexpected for me. For the first time in my life, I felt free. I felt loved for who I truly am, and I felt relieved.

That was the beginning of my new life. That was the beginning of my journey towards really loving myself.

It has not been totally easy. I had to tell my parents what happened to me. I have slowly told other close friends. And finally there came a time where I had to confront my abuser, and tell him that what happened between us was no longer a secret I was willing to keep. I lost people I was very close to in life because of that.

What happened as I owned my truth though, was that I finally learned to love myself. What happened to me, no longer defined me. I was no longer a victim… I was a survivor.

Slowly, talking about my past has gone from being something that brings me great pain, to something that I can do openly, without tears, without shame, and without guilt. My past no longer dictates my ability to be happy. I owned my past, so that it could stop owning me.

My advice to anyone out there struggling with their own truth, with their own secret past… Talk to someone. Anyone. Do not let your secret destroy you from the inside out, because it will. Don’t let your past steal moments of happiness from your future, you deserve better. The truth can, and will, set you free… so talk to someone, it will be okay.

Much love to you all,

– Christine

BeFree