Day after day she spends her time mostly alone, lost in her thoughts. If people could be inside her head, they’d probably be running for the nearest exit. She used to be vibrant and fun, and more and more she is dull and lifeless. Why did this have to happen to her? Often when someone struggles with an illness, they ask themselves what they did to deserve it. She doesn’t…she just truly believes she deserves to live this way.
That very inner core belief system she has is broken and distorted. This is that “being” that’s in human being. She’s human, but someone forgot to give her the gift of being. There are times she doesn’t even really believe that she belongs in this world – but knows there are others like her. She’s found them but like her, they are broken too. And together, they all just meld together into a mess.
And oh what messes she has made in life. The mistakes she can’t undo, the deeds she left undone….she believes
and this is true, that she tries to live a life where she is kind, giving, loving and gentle. She does none of the things she does out of malice or ill will – she does them because she can’t help it. And she does them over and over and over until the people that are close to her start to pull away I’m frustration.
When this happens, she quickly flies into survival mode – she MUST fix what she did wrong so the people won’t leave her. Everybody has always left her – or she pushed them away to keep from getting close – and fear is setting in. She sits lost in her world, sad and afraid and just wanting to hide until nobody is angry with her anymore.
“Oh but you must accept that others are people and have feelings and emotions” she tells herself, over and over. If someone is angry with you, it doesn’t mean they don’t love you. It doesn’t mean they will leave. She tries to console her panicking mind with these mantras, using the coping thoughts skill she learned recently in therapy. Sometimes it does work for a length of time, but most times it lasts only moments before the disturbing thoughts crowd their way back in.
Her feelings are intense and wash over her like a giant wave. She’s battered and weary from trying to just ride the waves out and her heart is hurting. “This is who I am. No more, no less than what stands here.” She tells herself. She reminds herself that she is an amazing woman who is kind and loving and generous. She loves fiercely and deeply and people like her. She doesn’t have to keep wearing the masks to please others. People can choose to love her as she is -mixed up and beautiful – or not. She can’t control that for others. If they get angry or frustrated with her, she reminds herself that those are THEIR feelings, not hers. And just like nobody can control what she feels, nor can she.
Letting go of trying to control someone else’s thoughts or feelings feels good for her. It’s freeing. And for today, she’s going to run this thought over and over until it becomes embedded and takes over as one of her core beliefs.