Shadow Work

Day started with one friend inviting me for breakfast at the local bar/restaurant. I didn’t enjoy it. There was a particularly loud woman serving us, who I was almost confrontational with, there was far too loud awful music, and I ate too much and felt ill. Nice time with the friend though. She commented at one point in the conversation on what an amazing life I’d made for myself. I agreed with her and it felt good to be invited to reflect on my life in such a positive way. Then home to rest and recover.

Another old friend I’d distanced from recently, contacted me and we went to the park. Within a minute was his first complaint. I was going to make a joke about him not using up his quota too quickly. I was considering counting the complaints and presenting the resulting tally to him at some point. But no. Let’s not be confrontational. I just enjoyed being out in nature took my gaze to the water and the trees.

I could see why I’ve found it difficult to be around. I slightly marvelled that I could tolerate that kind of unconscious behaviour and depressed energy for so long. Not now though…I’m moving away from people like that. I feel guilty even saying that. ‘People like that’ what does that even mean? People like what?

It means those who bring a negative energy to the table of life. Who present what’s ‘not right’ as an emphasis. I’m moving away from that and letting it go inside myself. It was hard as I watched myself joining in with that level of communication too. I’ve got a complaining side too, that I don’t want to encourage. Good to notice. Thanks for the opportunity.

I went back out in the evening sunshine with the dog in the car to that spot in the countryside I like. We walked a little across fields and I loved to see the dog made happy by having a bonus walk. I looked for fungi and saw plenty. It’s the simple joys for me like that, which accumulate and make a contented life.

Yesterday was a little strained dealing with the feelings thrown up by the course. Some shadow work brought on by the deep processing after doing the Shame course. I’m so grateful that courses and educators exist and are so accessible these days. All over the internet, we have anything we want. I have an optimistic sense that this is helping us fast track to our authentic selves.

The opportunity to turn and face these hidden parts and stuck energies and experiences. Grateful to myself for having the courage. I knew it was going to be hard as I felt resistance towards doing the course. That made me do it 🙂

Two dreams within a very long sleep last night. Both involved facing buried feelings and beliefs that I have had resistance towards bringing to the surface. One was some negative feelings towards my son and the other was my resistance towards seeing one ex as a beautiful wise being and possibly includes them all. A thought came to me yesterday after calling them a ‘sorry shower’ that I may be missing something, that one day it will become clear why they took those trajectories and I will understand more.

I was talking about the shame I feel when I reflect on my choices, and the unhappiness I brought on myself. I had a perfect storm of variables though that set up my choices. An often hysterically tearful, constantly unhappy and frequently angry mother that told me repeatedly that I’d end up with someone like my dad (i.e. that would betray and bring unhappiness) and he was actually a pretty crap partner to her and a crap neglectful father to us so whatever she said that was the role model anyway. Not a guy who demonstrated love, interest, an introverted guy who was depressed and sits in a chair all day. During the first 15 years of life anyway. He got a bit better as he got older. So I was conditioned to find perfectly disappointing men. Which I did.

In the dream I was experiencing one of them in his highest self. This keeps happening and I can see that no matter how they have behaved (in response to their conditioning and life choices), that is who they really are inside – authentic and divine and beautiful and loving and lovable. Like us all.

The dream about my son. All I remember was being woken up by feeling mild hostility towards him, and to make a note to write about it here this morning. It’s such a taboo to admit to feeling hostility towards one’s child. At least in my values rule book.

I remember being in India for 6 months and enjoying the freedom from the responsibility of motherhood. Not consciously at the time exactly. It was the first time in nearly 8 years, it was just me again, free to explore. He had gone back with my mum and dad to start school back home. It was such a relief not to have any responsibilities at all in life. I’d just lost a baby I loved deeply a few months previously and I was incapable of looking after my son. In India I recovered and then returned to the U.K.

I’d been a single parent for his first 5 years and had kind of muddled through that with next to no money, and a lot of help from my mum and dad. Even though I hadn’t consciously chosen to have a child, in fact it was the last thing on my mind as I was about to go back and do my post graduate year, I was a pretty naturally good mother, attuned well to his needs. I made the best of it. I read attachment parenting books. Sent him to Steiner nursery. Then with my parents, I saw their punitive child rearing attitude starting to come about as he got older. One Xmas I left mid dinner because of the harsh way they corrected his manners. He started school and I saw how that system was homing in on him and starting its repressive regimen. And an old ex came back in a dangerous way and I was so scared of what he might do that had to leave the country quickly. It was a rushed choice.

I went to a community in South Africa and I loved that he ran around with other kids free and happy that there were adults for me to interact with. Not just the pressure of me trying to earn a living and him at a shitty school. Life opened up a lot for new experiences for us both. We interacted a lot but he was often out with friends having fun. We were all going to change the world with out new model of an inclusive ecological intentional village. Hmmm. Not. Anyway….

I have seen a strong pushing away on occasion towards him. Secret irritated ‘for fucks sake’ responses to some of his recent foolish choices. The annoyance at him biting and picking his nails has evoked a strong rejection response. Mysophonia which I still have but now can handle the disturbance.

Part of me has resented the ‘having to’ element of parenting. I hoped it has never shown itself to him. Though me going off to the Himalayas and leaving him with my parents for 6 months…..Bringing a child up without the support of a partner is normal to me. Because that’s what my childhood was like, there but absent dad. But looking back, it’s been the most difficult thing I’ve done. My character type isn’t suited to some aspects of parenting either. The consistency required, and things like school homework I don’t agree with. The constant curtailment of my freedom.

Like everybody I got some things right and some things not right, and I was a good enough parent at the end of the day all things considered. This is all a story, just one angle of many possible angles. All true, and untrue at the same time.

One early client had cancelled today, that is good choreography thanks. To trust that choreography without trying to control it, to instead let go completely and trust. Yes. And as of a few seconds ago the other client cancelled! Notice and trust. This is the hard work side of growth. And it feels hard too. All is well.

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