First of all, I would like to thank (sounds kind of like I just won an Oscar, eh? ah hmmm) I would like to thank those of you who left such supportive comments in my "list" post. Marriage is indeed hard work, and I hesitated to put such personal information in there. I also found support and understanding, which I would not have otherwise discovered had I not shared. While I still feel a certain trepidation in being so vulnerable and exposed on this blog, I also want to celebrate my humanity, and I am thankful for the blog world's ability to help you find support. The worst thing that you can feel when you are really struggling is alone.
Part of celebrating humanity is knowing that there is pain in life, and this often precedes joy. My relationship with my husband seems to have taken a turn for the better, and it looks like resolution and forgiveness is in sight. We are not there yet, but we have come to the place where we are both willing to put down our swords and embrace our commitment.
Part of my healing journey has been finding IFS. I am still rather new to the whole method, and I won't go into what it is, because it is too big for this blog. Suffice it to say that this method of therapy is self-directed, non-pathologizing, and maintains the belief that each person has at their core a self who is centered and calm. If you are considering therapy, I would immediately seek someone who practices IFS...I believe it is the best therapy paradigm out there so far.
One of the aspects of this work is cultivating curiosity about your internal parts. I have been paying attention to where I am curious. Today, a wonderful benefit of being curious about myself was that I was free to be curious about my daughter. She had been whining all morning. Now, some moms might have no trouble dealing with whining, but whining drives me crazy. I had mustered all my patience and was doing a pretty good job, and when we went for a walk and she started whining again about how her arm hurt and how it only hurt on that side of the street but not the other side, I did something I am proud of. Instead of pulling out my usual repertoire of irritated responses, I mirrored what she said and then said, "how interesting!" and a "that's fascinating" or two. Calm, and centered. I wish I could tell you she stopped whining the rest of the morning. She didn't. But I was not irritated with her for feeling that. I was curious...what a wonderful place to be.
Curiosity is going to be my "gateway drug" to truly responding, and is going to help me get off those reaction substances.
These are the substances I want to be made of: compassion and curiosity.