Sunday, May 15, 2011

Turning Tables

Close enough to start a war…..

I am enamored with Adele. She has been one of my favorite singers for well over a year now—she just has a soulful quality about her voice. I have been meditating on this song for weeks now. It started with that statement, “Close enough to start a war.” Those are the hardest kinds aren’t they? The emotional battles with those we love—the abandonment we feel when someone “checks out” during a fight—the shame we feel inside when we know we are pushing them away….but we don’t know what else to do….after all we are right…we are entitled to speak our truth…we feel unheard, unappreciated and (my personal favorite) ignored.

All that I have is on the floor….
God only knows what we’re fighting for…

In the midst of an all out cold war in the house…or maybe even in the heat of the battle, do I really know why I am angry/frustrated/ticked off?? Seriously?? Can I name it?? I have found myself a bit addicted to Grey’s Anatomy…it’s a new addiction actually…one fueled by the discovery that I can watch episodes through Netflix. In one episodes, the GI Joe doctor-man is seeing a therapist for his PTSD. The therapist says something profound—“you have to name it to examine it.” (or something along those lines). If I can’t name the feeling (rather than the action) then I am not really getting down to the bottom of things. If I can’t express why something is annoying me today when for the last six months it hasn’t been a problem, them I am not being honest with myself and with my loved ones.

All that I say, you always say more….

I have been guilty of expressing this feeling a lot lately. To keep the peace, I keep the peace…but sometimes peace comes with a price—emotional withdrawal—divesting myself in the outcome. Sometimes this can be beneficial…but most times, it is devastating. I feel unheard because I can be an emotional mute…afraid to act…afraid to speak…not because someone has made me afraid, but rather I am afraid of what I will say and the repercussions and stark vulnerability that sharing my heart brings.  I am unheard because I don't my feelings of being unheard are correct--just misdirected....

I won’t let you close enough to hurt me – no
I won’t ask you—
You would just desert me….

Bingo!! If I share the depths of my heart—my fears, my hopes, my struggles and you don’t “get me” or you judge me…I will be devastated. Desertion is not just physical…it can be emotional as well. There is nothing worse than getting up the courage and asking—only to be shot down. The stakes are high when I am asking for you to be there with me and for me—even when I don’t deserve it. So instead, in the heat of battle, I turn the tables—I point the eye towards you to take the penetrating glare off of me. I put you in the hot seat so I can breathe. Coming from a former marriage where emotional desertion was the mode operandi has taught me the skill of the emotional bob and weave—to position myself where the hurt has the least impact, butstill function (somewhat) in the relationship. It’s a hard habit to unlearn… me…

It’s time to say goodbye—to turning tables…

Yay!!! No more turning tables!! But wait…there’s more!! Adele’s answer is to leave the relationship so she can breathe. She can’t ask…because she is afraid of desertion…she has no idea what they are really fighting for….so she goes…she walks away for relief. Sometimes I want to go there….I want to pack my bags and head for Tahiti…sand in my toes…mai tai in-hand and forget how to grow as a person. I am a runner by nature—it gets scary and I hide behind the big old oak tree…peeping around the trunk to see if it’s safe. I am the deer who freezes upon danger and then bounds out of the way----and into a mac truck. I vow to freeze my fleeing feet into place and wait and allow myself to be seen….and to be loved. I vow to ask even when my knees are knocking and I have mentally pre-determined the answer. I vow to love and to be loved—to be fully visible even when invisibility seems safer. I vow to get even closer and not stray to the perimeter. Fully present, fully seen, emotionally honest. Here I am.