It’s been said that if you cannot control what’s going on inside of you, you cannot control anything else. And the closer we get to Christmas, the less control I feel over my emotions about the closing year.
You see, I’ve never cried more than I have in 2018.
Early this year, I had my heart broken. Shattered. Pummeled. Ground up. And when I swept the pieces into the dust pan of no self-respect, and presented the ashen pile to the one who hurt me, he took it and with a puff of air–sent everything flying again. I tried staying. I tried leaving. I begged. I pleaded. I moved and moved back again. And eventually, I just stood still. He would tell you I refused to let him leave the relationship. I would tell you I refused to stop fighting for it. Neither of us could tell you where we’re headed.
In the end, the only thing certain is that nothing is certain.
I’m a woman in her mid-thirties, a divorcee, a long-distance mom, and a professional undergoing a career transition, all while trying to figure out if the man I lie next to each night loves me. And if he doesn’t, what does that mean?
I’m reading through Melody Beattie’s “The Language of Letting Go.” You see, as unfair as he has been to me, I’ve unfairly put the responsibility of my emotional wellbeing and happiness solely into his hands for the past 2+ years. And what a huge burden that has been on him. But what a huge burden that has been on me, too. What an awful thing to place on yourself–constant control of another person’s thoughts and behaviors.
Being co-dependent is not for the faint of heart. It’s a lonely road paved with delusions of self-control. Somehow, you equate controlling those around you with controlling yourself. And when it works, you feel great. And when it fails, you feel despair.
But I think the greatest illusion of co-dependency is that there is simply no other way to live. Happiness may be an inside job, but it’s the first thing a co-dependent wants to outsource. And if who they choose doesn’t do the job well–it’s very tempting to move on to find another who can better dance under the puppet strings because ‘clearly’ they know how to “really love me.”
And that is the cross that all co-dependents bear. Somewhere, somehow, someone failed to love them in ways they actually needed to be loved. Someone failed to show up. Someone exited when they weren’t supposed to. Someone twisted real love into a facade of compromises, heartbreak, and pain. Someone did something that led the co-dependent to feel that somehow another’s inability to love them was their fault, and if that’s true, a co-dependent concludes that they can fix “it” by fixing “themselves” and modifying everything–EVERYTHING–in an effort to be what they need to be to be…loved again.
The greatest tragedy is that co-dependents forget how to love themselves, how to nourish those things that make them feel happy and fulfilled, and in doing so, become shells of the people they used to be, mere shadows of what they could be, and spend years chasing love instead of letting love.
Letting love happen.
Letting love go.
Letting love come into our lives.
Letting self-love take root.
So that’s where the name of this blog comes from. Because as a co-dependent myself, I deeply yearn to be loved, but I have a hard time accepting it. I yearn to love another deeply, but somewhere along the way, I started loving through controlling.
This blog is a commitment to myself to journal daily while “in recovery.” To unapologetically work through the feelings I experience. And a promise that if I do, the best and most love-filled years are ahead.