You know how you carry a huge weight for the times you were cruel to others? After a ton of therapy, you’ll start to realize that you were a product of your upbringing. You were bullied by your mother… and by other kids at school and other places… and you wanted to spread the pain that was boiling your insides. You wanted power because you were powerless. You wanted to strike out because you were terrified of those who attacked you. Your fear was unacceptable – because in your mind, fear is a sign of a victim. In your mind, a victim would always suffer… so you would instead force that fear to become anger – because people were afraid of anger and angry people… and perhaps then they would leave you alone.
Alone. It seemed that was all you ever wanted. But deep inside, that wasn’t true. You wanted someone – anyone – that you could count on. A person who would stand by you and defend you. Who would not withhold their love if you made a mistake. Who could make you feel worthy. Who would never abandon you.
Yes, you did terrible things. But those things do not define you except for how they will teach you that the person who did these hurtful things is not the person you really are. You have taken those bright, beautiful, fragile, soft, and powerfully empathic parts of yourself and you have buried them deeply behind miles of armored walls. You did this because, where you are right now, it is how you are coping with your mother’s pain and fear and hate. You are a child and she doesn’t understand what that means.
I have visited you so many times… perhaps daily since I found the path. I talk to you and tell you that it’s okay… you are a child… you have made big mistakes… and that’s okay. You don’t have to feel this way anymore. Because you see, I still carry deep inside of me that angry and scared part of you. The part who never had a chance to grow up because everything was so uncertain and you couldn’t rely on anyone. You had to skip a big part of your childhood… and ended up being a child stuck in an adult’s body. Because you never really learned how to trust… or that love could be something that wasn’t filled with so much pain.
So now I find those times when you come up in my memories… your actions which fill me with regret. And I have a talk with you about how, despite your actions, you were (and are) worthy of love and acceptance. I hold you inside of myself and show you the kindness and love that my own children have shown me. I want you to understand that you are accepted. You are loved. You are beautiful. Even with your mistakes.
I will keep saying these things to you… and I will keep holding you… until you finally believe it. And then when those memories arrive, I will know the peace of acceptance and forgiveness.
Until then… we’ll keep talking.