LIFE...It's Yours To Make
Dedicated to all those who suffer in relationships they know are disfunctional, feel miserable, and are unable to walk away to allow new opportunities in their lives and the lives of the other.
How Do We “Forgive and Forget” While Remembering
What We Need To Do To Protect Ourselves From Abusive Relationships
Holding a grudge, anger or disappointment is like taking poison and expecting someone else to die. It's pretty well accepted that we need to “let go.” Forgiveness is the greatest thing we can give to others, and even greater to ourselves. To every good lesson learned, however, there is always a downside, or what we perceive as a downside. This is, after all, a world of Duality.
So what to do, when the abuser is someone we love very much? What to do, when it seems they've “seen the light,” and “mended their ways?” Think about it. By the time that has happened, haven't you been back to take yet another and another round of abuse?
Haven't you used every excuse on their behalf? You've understood their pain, Compassionately, you've embraced them again with your heart bursting with love. “Let's go on from here,” you thought...until the demeaning words and insults about things that are so important to you began to flow again. Irrational blaming and assaults of anger darken your days and you are miserable. Perhaps there's cheating; covert romances that impinge on your time together, perhaps cancel your dates, or find your mate missing for hours, a night or more. Perhaps they don't answer the phone for you, and then it is a curt reply and aggressive tones imposing your lack of trust or patience.
“I'm confused again,” you say....”What should I do?” “How can I help her/him?” “I don't want to suffer anymore.” Indeed, that's the first clue...are you suffering in this relationship? Is that what you think a relationship should bring to you? Are you under the impression that “That's All There IS?” Unfortunately our society has become one that quips about the “dark side” of marriage, pits men against women and vice verse...and jokes about expecting no more from women or men but the worst. With this mindset, our youth grow up thinking that's how “it is.” “S/he's out to get me and I just have to duck when the garbage hits the fan.” An abused person begins to think that “That's all there is.” “Accept it or have nothing.” “This is the prize, and this is the price I must pay for it.”
If a relationship has 'gone wrong,' thefirst thing to do is look at how you are abusing yourself by staying in the situation and allowing mud to be slung all over you. YOU need to take responsibility! Forcing someone else to take responsibility is impossible! Strong words? Indeed, if repeated attempts at pleasing another have yielded no harmony, the next thing to do is realize you must be your own Knight in Shining Armor. Stand at the gateof your own Castle. Decide what comforts that Castle needs, and craft them within yourself.
Boundaries must be set. What would fulfill you? Which friends exhibit relationships that comfort and satisfy you? Take a lesson from that. Those are the things you need in your intimate relationship...that is what you deserve to expect from your Significant Other. How can we imagine that we deserve any less than the love we give? If you have no one in your life that personifies peace and love...look outside your life. Observe people you see that are smiling and visibly enjoy each other and the activities they participate in. Truthfully, instead of looking for a new love interest...the first responsible thing to do is make your own self your love interest. Take the hand of your Child Within, and promise to protect her/him...take him/her out to the park...for a walk on the beach...on an “Artist Date,” as Julia Cameron would say. Find out what makes YOU tick. What brings you joy that causes giggles to erupt from your depths? Can you remember all the times you pasted a brave smile on your face? How did that feel inside? Did that correct the situation? IS IT WORKING FOR YOU??
Life is not work! Life is automatic! I'm not talking about “making a living.” We have Autonomic Nervous Systems...they keep us alive. Automatically. We never have to think, “Okay, heart, beat now. Lungs, inflate now...empty now...inflate again...okay, time to empty.” All this and more happens for us. That is how automatic LIFE is.
The Source of Life is JOY...The Creator, God, Goddess, Allah, Yaweh...want us to enjoy life. This is the Great Lesson. To give ourselves contentment...then it will automatically spill over to others...and one day, a connection will begin to build into a LOVING relationship.
So, what to do about this love that has gone wrong? That Knight in Shining Armor needs to unsheath her/his double-edged sword every time the impulse to return and “try again” begins to emerge. One side of the sword is forgiveness...it severs one's self-destructive inattention to the facts. The other side of the sword severs the chains that encompass your space. Peace must return to the“land.”
“I can't turn my back on him/her,” you say. Can you really afford to continue turning your back on yourself? Have you considered the toll all the stress takes on your mind, body and emotions? That indigestion? Painful bloating? Shaking? Inability to sleep? Colds? Flu? Practice championing yourself, and see how much of that goes away...
Be Mindful of hurting another...it is a very sharp two-edged sword. An abuser will accuse you of being “mean,” “thoughtless,” “never helping.” Logic and Memory are your tools. Who did what? An abuser tries to turn the tables; that's why conversation even becomes off limits...being in the same location becomes off limits. Subjecting oneself to the abuser's tactics might result in reactions that are insulting or violent...don't become the abuser that emerges from the victim. The way to avoid that is to choose to
be the Champion.
Forgive the abuser's ignorance while realizing the spiral you and they have been repeating. Remember that you (and they...but they can only give it to themselves) deserve the best! It is our Birthright to be happy, respected and honored. That begins by respecting and honoring ourselves. It requires disallowing abuse to be rained on us. Would you choose a snarling dog for a pet, or a friendly one?
It takes great strength of character to champion oneself, and the hidden Goodness in that is that you champion the abuser as well...by removing their target, there is opportunity for them to see the error of their ways. Until they decide to do that, no one can do it for them! In the least, you begin to heal your own life. Whole, healed people radiate Peace and quiet Joy that touches others with healing. Somewhere down the line, a person you needed to “turn your back on” may come into Wholeness and Happiness too...they can never do that while you continue to be their punching bag and deny them the emptiness that can be filled with new Understanding.
FIVE FINGER PRAYER...a useful tool:
1. Your thumb is nearest you. So begin your prayers by praying for those closest to you. They are the easiest to remember. To pray for our loved ones is, as C. S. Lewis once said, a "sweet duty."
2. The next finger is the pointing finger. Pray for those who teach, instruct and heal. This includes teachers, doctors, and ministers. They need support and wisdom in pointing others in the right direction. Keep them in your prayers.
3. The next finger is the tallest finger. It reminds us of our leaders. Pray for the president, leaders in business and industry, and administrators. These people shape our nation and guide public opinion. They need God's guidance.
4. The fourth finger! is our ring finger. Surprising to many is the fact that this is our weakest finger; as any piano teacher will testify. It should remind us to pray for those who are weak, in trouble or in pain. They need your prayers day and night. You cannot pray too much for them.
5. And lastly comes our little finger; the smallest finger of all which is where we should place ourselves in relation to God and others. As the Bible says, "The least shall be the greatest among you." Your pinkie should remind you to pray for yourself. By the time you have prayed for the other four groups, your own needs will be put into proper perspective and you will be able to pray for yourself more effectively.
~ Transformational Spiritual Services ~ With Reverence for All Life