Thursday, July 28, 2011

Overwhelming the Responsible One

Listen to this post:

A bacterial infection and two rounds of antibiotics finally have my full attention. My body has been speaking violently and I had no choice but to listen. In the throes, however, when I screamed at God that I couldn't take any more pain, it stopped.

It was enough to know I am not alone and, certainly, not unloved or unheard. But, boy, I am sick of the pain. Literally. Enough to take on some deep wading, wrung out as I have been.

When all I could do was pick up a book to read and nothing more, I happened onto "The 12 Stages of Healing" by Donald M. Epstein, D.C., loaned to me by my spiritual friend weeks ago. It was laying dormant in my get-to stack.

I was ready for this book and the work of identifying where I am in the healing process, places I am stuck and have stumbled. It has made me realize that what seem like isolated chaotic incidents do form a pattern: one deeply rutted and imbedded since childhood, maybe before. Lately, I have wondered what this suffocating sense of responsibility I have is; it paralyzes me.

I would wager I am about half way or so through the stages, though I have been some of these places before and will be again. In case you're curious, they are:
1) Suffering
2) Polarities and Rhythms
3) Stuck in a Perspective
4) Reclaiming our Power
5) Merging with Illusion
6) Preparation for Resolution
7) Resolution
8) Emptiness in Connectedness
9) Light Behind the Form
10) Ascent
11) Descent
12) Community

Yesterday, I completed several of the exercises at the ends of chapters, one of  which cautioned "You may have all of the acknowledgement you ever wanted." The doc was right. By simply asking my shadow/suffering what it wanted and why, I was flooded with a string of responses that, first, stunned me, then gave me a giant AH-HA moment.

My shadowy suffering said it wanted to hurt me for locking it up and putting it away. Then, I knew exactly that a cause of my fibromyalgia is my inner child calling for attention by creating tension. It was tired of hiding in the shadows of my adult, responsible self for years, never getting a chance to shine. I truly believe a miscarriage before my daughters was symbolic of this child coming out, that I must not hang onto her, but open the door and grant her freedom, integrating her into myself.

I joke that my youngest is a wild child and I'll write a book called "Letting my Lily out" some day, but she really is teaching me not to lock those wild parts away. To, occasionally, let them overwhelm the Responsible One.

In working through this with my intuitive counselor/massage therapist, I did something so uncouth that I can't even believe I am writing it: I spit onto his floor, expelling old patterns I had been holding. He told me to do and it was, almost, involuntary. God, it felt good to get it out and break the social morays. Made me wonder if I ought to start chewin' tobacco ... only a fleeting thought.

• How has my body spoken to me?
• In what ways do I pay attention?
• What old patterns do I hold?
• What is the state of my inner child?
• How can I let my Lily out?

wretched, curled
into a fetal position

expelling the poison
to the point of 
pleading for it to stop

recognizing the
process is my path
to wholeness

casting out the tar
of what's not me,
clearing room for
all that is

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