Monday, October 07, 2002

"Live a fulifilling life instead of just surviving"

Survive vb. 1 SYN , See OUTLIVE

2. To continue to exist or function in spite of an unsually adverse condition or development.
Outlast, Endure, Persist, Live Down, Recover....Continue

"The dance of recovery is owning and honring the emotional wounds so that we can release the grief, energy - the pain, rage, terror and shame that is driving us"

What are "your" rules of survival ? How do any of us become survivors - and what is it we think we are surviving?

Where did I perfect my game face - did I do it because I "had" to - is there a theory of "cause & effect" ?

  • Cause: My Mother an orphan - seriously left on a door step in a basket, no kidding - never knew the love, the unity of a family growing up - in turn, lacking in experience and education she loved her children with a tumultuous vehemance bordering on desperate that became for me both empowering (professionally) and suffocating (emotionally). We were taught there were no promises - the parent could leave at anytime, for any reason, you were being judged, a single mistake could end everything.

  • Cause: My Father saw his physicality and athleticism as his only control over his wife and his children, he was misguided in thinking that backhanding me accross a room for poor manners or pulling me - dragging - by my reddened wrists from a poorly played little league game would have the desired effect. That his barbaric competitiveness would make me a winner. That one day he wouldn't be a little intimidated when "I" walked in the room - stronger , bigger and tougher than he ever imagined a 'pansy' could be.

  • Cause: My Mother was a drunk - this acted as if a treble and bass control on the volume and frequency of her feelings - often vascillating abruptly - unexpectantly - between love and contempt. Love was a ripple on the surface - something hateful brewed beneath - turn your eye away and it would take you whole into it's dark, murky depths.

  • Cause: My brother, sister and I learned at an early age to fend only for yourself, trust no one, survival alone was easier - less casualties, less liabilities, less betrayal.

    The "Effect": I've wasted so much energy over the past 33 years trying to survive, forgetting to live.

    But how does a survivor give up the one thing that has kept him alive - kept him passing the open windows ?

    Maybe by learning the causes - by witnessing the effects.

    Boozing, fist fights, drug habits, casual sex, failed relationships and a fear of letting people get close.

    If I'm willing to look in the closet - are the shadows as scary ?
    If I take inventory of my eccentricities, can I stop calling them faults ?
    If I stop punishing myself for my parents unhappiness - can I find my own ?

    I guess I wouldn't write it unless I was willing to find out.