She left pieces of her life behind her everywhere she went. It’s easier to feel the sunlight without them, she said. – Brian Andreas
I am on my journey; well into it in fact. Just when I think I am making ground, life socks it to me. Maybe it is to keep me humble. To remind me that I am far from perfect and that life will forever be a continuous classroom for me. I am an eager student as I don’t much like pain or heartache. Yet somehow I always manage to find my way stuck back in the corner with the dunce hat on.
Today I am really hurting. I had a miserable fight last night with my boyfriend who happens to be my dear friend too, as it should be. Anyway, it didn’t last long…maybe 10 minutes, but there was anger sprawled all over the walls in invisible ink. The things we said were true…it was how we felt at the time. However, anger has a nice way of taking one thought and making it morph into something so much bigger at times.
No matter what happens I am not shattered. I shattered years ago and I really don’t think it can happen again to me. Last night, I was ANGRY, HURT, and I felt BETRAYED. Yes, I cried many tears and I woke up this morning looking like I had puffer fish for eyes. I guess that’s when the shock hit. I hate this fight because it was so stupid and there was no reason for it. I try so hard to be open and honest. However, a partnership takes two people and the other person in this one has a hard time expressing himself. It built up on both sides, and it just exploded. What a mess we can make of our lives in a split second. If only we could go back in time for a minute and take back that one response. Alas, we cannot and life rolls out as it does and we are left to choose how we want to respond and react to all the things, including ourselves.
I regret that argument. I regret the fact that we hurt each other. I regret the fact that he is so stinking unhappy with me. I wish I could change it, but I can’t. I can only change myself and how I proceed from this point forward. Today, I decided to be a detective. I wanted to delve deep into what preceded this argument and what was said to try to figure out the ‘why’ on a deeper level. I had to go deep, not to discover his flaws, but to find out why I keep finding myself in this situation.
I survived an abusive marriage. I then fell in love with a man who died a few years later. My current love is an amazing person. Yes, he has faults and shortcomings but so do we all. I hate fighting…I spent years literally defending my life as a married woman. I can’t do fights…I hate them. I lose myself in them. Usually, I try to just stop them before they start. Yes, I know that this is NOT healthy. It is a remnant from the past where I walked on eggshells to keep the peace. Oddly enough today I accepted the fact that I have still been up to my old tricks. I am not writing to place blame on anyone here. There is no fault to be had…this is life. Relationships are hard work, communication is key, and arguments happen.
The other day I read something from Melody Beattie that nearly knocked me over:
“….I know. We didn’t get loved the way we wanted. Some of us have spent years picking through the messy issues of parents who had unusual ways of showing love or who didn’t show love at all.
We may have had spouses who were dreadful at showing love. Issues like alcoholism and other dysfunctions can genuinely interfere with a person’s ability to love. Some of us took that personally.We looked around and the only conclusion we could come up with is that we weren’t lovable.
Some of us need to grieve the absence of love in our family of origin. We may have missed an important emotional lesson while growing up, and we barely realize it. That lesson is understanding how lovable we are.
Some of us learned to protect ourselves by caring for others, while refusing to let love into our own lives. We found that it is easier to shut down and not be open to love, rather than be denied love.”
Revelation. I read it again today after my ugly argument of last night. As always I had an impromptu therapy session with my best friend. It wasn’t what you might think…two women bashing on the guy. No, I wanted to understand what the hell was going on with me. I was glimpsing the big picture, but I couldn’t make it out clearly. I think that now I can finally see clearly the pieces to the jumble of the puzzle that is my life.
Just to recap with you: I had a lovely childhood, but I was one of many. I guess I needed more attention then I got because I can remember feeling misunderstood and in the way. I don’t blame my folks…I know how hard it is to be a parent. It’s just how it was. I am an empath and incredibly sensitive to others pain. I didn’t need more, I just needed someone to understand me. Childhood morphed into an unhappy adolescence which is par for the course for many. Still feeling completely misunderstood I moved into adulthood. I had a successful career and accolades, but as soon as I started having serious relationships I was so off my game.
Today, I pieced some of the puzzle together. I never felt like I fit in, was understood, or good enough. As a result I felt a lot of inner pain growing up despite the fact that from all angles I was a pretty well-adjusted kid. I didn’t know what to do when I met people who were in emotional pain. It drew me in like a magnet. I felt I could help them because I understood and felt their pain deep into my bones. I was not taught to have healthy boundaries and this is the crux of my problem. Today, I decided that I was going to figure out the common thread that ran through all the men I have had relationships with in order to help heal myself and grow.
I found it, and I didn’t have to do much forensic work. It was staring me down… straight on. All my relationships have been with men who while lovely, have had tumultuous youths. Without meaning any harm, I naturally wanted to help them; even though they didn’t ask for it. I have an incredibly strong personality and I want to help; apparently even at my own expense. My pain as a child allowed me to attract the same in a partner. I guess I always thought that I could love the pain away. You would think that after my marriage I would have learned…not so much. Sure, I put up boundaries, but they couldn’t protect me from something that I really didn’t understand until today. I have attracted partners that I felt were broken like me so I could feel understood. Feeling understood would allow me to feel loved and accepted. It doesn’t work this way friends. It is time for me to leave these pieces in the past and move forward with open eyes.
I need to see myself and how I relate to partners in a new light. I need to accept that I am lovable and I deserve to be loved by a healthy and whole person who can balance me. It is NOT my job to save anyone but myself; nor educate anyone but my children. I think that today I passed with an A. Unfortunately, I had to hit the emotional exploding point with someone I love very much to get it. True love conquers all…I do believe this. I am not talking about the love of romance, but deep soulful love. My favorite poet Kahlil Gibran said, “So as love crowns us so shall it crucify us.” I am realistic in these matters; I know that all roads in life have bumps in them. The kind of love I am looking for might not be attainable. However, I know if I keep working on being a better me and making better choices then I have HOPE. I know what I need to look for and what I need to avoid; and I certainly know that it is NOT my job to save anyone but myself. It isn’t possible for me to give anyone back a happy childhood…even myself.
So, I have picked myself up and I have kicked my ego out the door. This is the real deal; life is bumpy. True relationships are hard work, but they are worth it. It has been said that “We attract the love we think we deserve”. This has an all new meaning for me today. I have chosen to forgive and let go. I commit to being a better version of me, and to let go of the pieces of me that no longer serve me. I am lovable and I am worthy of the same kind of love that I have to give to someone. Here’s to better choices and learning life’s lessons quicker! Xo Ella
20 thoughts on “Finding Ella.”
Love this, love this lesson. It is the same one I am struggling with right now and why I am curling around myself trying to work through a difficult time in marriage.
Val, I am sending you LOVE…lot’s of it. Relationships are hard…some years are good and some are bad. One day at a time love…XO Ella
This blog reminded me of my all time favourite Taoist quote “To know others is wisdom, to know ourselves is superior wisdom”
Wow matey – how insightful and so proud of you – yes kick that EGO out and transform into the responsive and balanced empath you truly are – These lessons once learned sear our hearts and minds and eventually through this self knowledge we become more, we strive to gain more wisdom about ourselves to improve our lives and our relationships – be forever wonderful – evie xx
Sweet Evie, I am so glad to read your response. Somehow I knew if this resonated with anyone it would be you. You truly understand me and I am so fluffin grateful that you are in my life. Xo Ella
Congratulations for finding the strength to dive in and gather these insights. I’m inspired by your post, and applaud your perseverance. Your lack of blame-placing makes the read so enjoyable, focusing on where you want to improve and what you want to learn vs. what others have done or caused. Bravo!
Thank you CIndy for reading and taking the time to comment. I know it was a long post, but I am so grateful that you read it and it resonated with you. I am so past the blame game…I want to get on with my life. XO Ella
many times i feel like “i am not getting what i need from xyz…” you articulated it perfectly for me. thank you.
Thank you for telling me this. It is so reassuring to know that I connect with someone and that someone understands me. Xo Ella
Ella, this is such a big lesson! One that many need to understand and you describe it so well! You keep moving forward, as hard as I know it is, you are doing fantastic! You are on the right track because you are trying to fix you, not them, that’s a big step for anyone! Also, yes, ego gets in the way, best without it. And if somone is not good at communicating, then open up and talk to them, they will at least hear you, but may not show it right away. Many great lessons and realizations here! Thanks for sharing!!!
Thank you Scott. I am so glad that we are friends. You are a daily source of encouragement and inspiration for me as i know we are both on the precipice ready to fly! XO Ella
Absolutely beautiful my love, thank you. xoxo
Thank you sweet friend. XO Ella
“As children of alcoholics, we tend to love those we can pity and rescue” – I think this says pretty much a similar thing to what you said.
I have been following you for some time on FB, thanks to E.L.Farris. Thanks so much for the comforting comment you posted to me. It gives me hope.
I didn’t know you had a blog. I subscribed.
Thank you so much for your comment. I appreciate them all truly I do. Much love Xo Ella
Ella, sweet Ella. How exquisitely raw you have shared your truth with us. With such authenticity you share a valuable life lesson for all to embrace. Here’s to kicking ego’s &^%
Thank you Lee. I so appreciate your feedback and I just adore your spirit too XO Ella
I can relate to all issues you write about . I also have PTSD chronic depression.. You are helping me more than I can write . I am a survivor of molestation by my stepfather. From the baby age of five years old till I was sixteen. Yes that messed me up in so many ways. Four marriages all abusive. Physical and mental abusive. Like you I’ve referred to myself as being a magnet for the weird .
I do have three grown children forty- seven , forty- five, and thirty-nine. I want all of them to read your blogs. Both my sons try to fix their mates.all of us has struggled with addictions. Of all sorts.
Enough about me, I want to read and heal more. One more thing please, this year has been one of the worst for me. My best friend , my life, for the past fourteen years passed away march seventh. Iam still not recovered.
Thank you Rebel thank you . With love light and peace my new friend. ❤ Linda xo
Oh Linda…love to you my friend. I am so sorry about the passing of your friend. It takes time. I lost a true love less than 2 years ago and it was a surprise. The thing that really helped was letting him go, forgiving him, and celebrating his life. I still miss him, but I know he is here with me. It’s one of my gifts to feel that.
I want to tell you that while your life may feel like it has been on a downward trajectory, you are far from done here on this earth and you can change it all around right now. You are not your past and you are not what happened to you.
When we are abused we carry so much guilt and shame around with us. You need to let go of that and forgive yourself if you haven’t for allowing it to happen. It wasn’t your fault. You are so worthy my dear and you are so deserving of real love. When you arrive there you will never settle for anything else. I know this because I can finally say that I have arrived there.
My beautiful friend there is time for you and your children. Turn yourself around and they will follow. I hope that you are on Fb and a part of RT… I know you will find great strength and hope there. Your children too. XO Ella
I happened upon your blog today and read for a bit..during that time I began questioning all my failed relationships ..I have come to a point in my life that I really need to find myself and love myself…I have never lived on my own without a man in my life and I am 47 years old!!!…this is something that i feel I have to do ..your words have given me great inspiration …and love the tat , btw
Marina, Thank you for reading my writings. I am so glad that they resonate with you. It is never to bad to hit the refresh button on your life sister. When you meet the right man, he will love you, support you, and give you the space you need to find yourself. It’s a process this thing they call life my dear. One day at a time and love you…everyday. XO Ella