I wrote this May 4th 2017 and have come a LONG way since. It’s my hope someone, anyone, gets something out of it.
I was laying in my bed last night thinking about my past relationship I had with a narcissist for 27+ years. Reminiscing about how toxic it was but the reminiscing was not in an unhealthy way. I wasn’t focused on the bad, I didn’t start going back down that mental rabbit hole and it didn’t, thank God, elicit any I’ll feelings, anger or hurt like it once upon a time did. After thinking for a little while about this now dead interaction, it seemed like all the names that were “third parties” to our so-called relationship started coming to mind. I imagined that I was having somewhat of a fictitious conversation with him and found myself starting to point out to him how many superficial relationships he’s had since I’ve known him – superficial because they were based on material things, sex and how he could benefit from them – and that he must be the one at fault because he’s the common denominator but even within this make believe conversation, I automatically caught myself cleaning it up and telling him that I could easily say that but it wouldn’t be entirely accurate. See, the truth is, and I’m not sure if I’m going to phrase this right, but the truth is….it’s not 100% his fault! Yes, the behaviors are unjustified and inexcusable but the reality is that we, the narcissist’s “victims” or “targets”, allow ourselves to be treated in such a deplorable manner because of issues that still need to be addressed. The narcissist executes the behaviors because of his or her own deep rooted dysfunctions, but we allow it to continue. To happen in the first place.
Anyway, after thinking about all this, I was blown away by how many others that he’s gone thru since I’ve known him, that most likely have or have had at the point in time they dealt with him, various unaddressed issues just like myself. I felt a sense of sadness and a sense of ‘wow’! People, we have to heal. Whether our trauma/issues/dysfunctions are no longer able to be ignored and brought to us on a silver platter by a sociopath or be it some other messenger….we have to become more self aware, be willing to go into uncomfortable territory, love ourselves and ultimately HEAL. Spring clean the negative in order to bring in the positive!
That person with Narcissistic Personality Disorder that used to be in my life was finally given an ultimatum by me and I stuck to my guns about it. And I thank God every day that I did! To say that I was tired is such a cliche. I had BEEN tired for over 20 years but never took that first step that would ultimately free me from HIS world of chaos, deceit, ATTEMPTED manipulation, lies, cheating and the list goes on a mile long. Three years ago is when I heard a voice say to me so clearly, “it’s time”. That was the beginning of my journey to heal. It’s been rough. There’s been a lot of taking 3 steps forward then 5 steps backwards. A lot of questioning myself. A lot of game plans that I thought would allow me to be able to deal with this type of person. Then the day came when I hit my breaking point. I gave him an ultimatum – either he chooses me and shuts the door to all the other females and inappropriate relationships as well as all the doors he leaves open as a plan B or……..IM shutting the door on us and any type of relationship or interaction for good. Now mind you, prior to this I had tried to give him and us every opportunity to try and make this work. I will even goes as far as to say that MAJOR compromises on my part were offered but one thing I WOULD NOT give in to was marrying him AGAIN. And he knew this. Which is why I believe he used this as his trump card 🃏 aka his excuse not to compromise and be willing to give me what I NEEDED from him. Inevitably all this led up to that ultimatum. Yes, he attempted to manipulate the situation, spin it, twist the FACTS of it etc…….none of it worked because the truth of the matter was I wasn’t being swayed. I was no longer sweeping our reality under the rug. Not this time. He had a choice to make. I guess deep down I knew that either I wasn’t going to be the one he chose or if I was, it would all be superficial, deceitful and temporary and I’d be right back in the same predicament. To fast forward, that moment came. That moment during a conversation when he said in so many words that he chose the others. That he chose to keep doing HIM. That was one of the more painful moments between me and him but even in that moment, I literally felt a burden released and a weight lifted off of me. In that moment I felt free. Free from his chaos, free from that mindset I had been in that had me feeling like i had to compare myself and compete with all the other females and situations that I took a back seat to INSIDE that bus he always threw me under! I was free to finally be able to set my mind on all the future healthy situations and relationships life had in store for me! In hindsight, i realize that was MY Independence Day. I do want to say however that my decision to close that door for good in the event i wasn’t the “chosen one” didn’t come over night. I actually pondered it, prepared for it, went thru all the emotions and even grieved for what I knew was coming. It prepared me to stand strong in my decision.
I said all this to say that even though he chose other females, other situations and other things that he thought were more beneficial to his shallow and empty shell of a self, I didn’t lose. I actually won. I now have peace instead of chaos in my life. No more giving my time, energy and any part of me to someone who only offers deception, lies, cheating, maliciousness, slander and insincerity in return. I’m free, I’m healing, I’m moving forward and I WON!
I recently did a Facebook post that went something like this:
“It took me a while, but I’ve finally come to accept the fact that when you’re in a relationship with a Narcissist, NOTHING you do will ever be good enough. I would have never been thin enough, pretty enough, or submissive enough. No amount of material possessions or giving him what he wanted emotionally, physically, and psychologically would have made one bit of difference. I now KNOW and ACCEPT that these were not MY issues to take on, but they were things being projected on to me because of HIS own demons that he refused to deal with.”
The point I want to drive home is exactly what the title says: Accepting It As It Truly Is. Believe me, it’s NOT an easy task and embarrassingly, I have to admit that although it didn’t take me 20+ years to acknowledge his behavior and know that it was unacceptable (and yet I continued to deal with him due to my own issues, but that’s another blog in and of itself), it did take me 26 years to finally ACCEPT things about myself, about him and about me and him as a unit which led to me being able to put a label on our relationship dynamic and ultimately leading to resources that would help me on my journey to heal.
I want to take the time to do a short blog (a mini blog, if you will) on the power of healing. Not healing from “boo-boos” when you scrape yourself. Not healing from major surgery or the like. But healing from what is essentially self-inflicted emotional wounds. For so many people, myself included, when we’re hurt we put up walls and come up with ways to protect ourselves from allowing that person to further inflict pain upon us. I call it self-inflicted because at the end of the day, these walls, these negative attitudes towards them, the grudges, the resentment etc. is not hurting anybody except us.
Well, I was in that situation and had even convinced myself and wholeheartedly believed that in order for me to deal with a particular person was, in essence, NOT to deal with them because i knew that any mention of their name, the mere sight of their face or anything related to them would send me into a downward spiral of nothingness and believe me when i say, because ive kept track, it would take a minimum of 3-4 days to recover and rejoin the living but then i literally had a ‘divine revelation’ that “wait a minute….this is not healthy for me. Im not getting anywhere and its definitely doing me more harm than it isnt them!” I realized i needed to let it go and come up with another solution. So thats what i did – i let go and let God. Meaning that through prayer, prayer and more prayer, i was able to shift the focus from those negative feelings to working on what i needed to work on in order to move forward. By doing that, i can honestly say that the next time i actually SAW this person, feelings of hatred, resentment, hostility and every other negative emotion that gets conjured up from the depths of hell no longer ruled me. I ruled them. I was able interact with this person as if we were friends and their wasnt an ounce of bad history between us.
Moral of the story my friends: its true what they say about forgiveness, doing it for you and not for them and holding on to grudges. That other person is going on with their life and you’re sitting around reaping the consequences. You’re drinking the poison that’s meant for them! So for those of you who are in similar situations, find your inner being and higher power, combine the two and let it all go!! You’ll find that you move forward a lot faster than if you didnt.
Today was one of those days where I “just wasnt feeling it”! Ever have one (or more, lol) of those? I’m the type of person that can be overruled by emotions sometimes – only when it comes to certain issues mind you – which is kind of ironic since most people tend to see me as someone that rarely gets excited about anything or tends to stay calm unless you’ve really pushed my buttons. In general though, I live my life by the “what’s done is done and if you can do something about it, then do it – if not, don’t waste negative energy on it” motto. Now going back to today and why I just wasn’t feeling it, which happens to be directly related to one of those “certain issues” I mentioned above. Let me start from the beginning – or at least close to it……
I’ve been in the fitness industry for 14 years now as a fitness trainer. I obviously have a passion for it because I’ve stuck to it this long and have even seen lots and lots of turnover in the gyms because of so-called “trainers” who got into this business for the wrong reasons. Now, 14 years ago would make me younger, thinner, way more athletic and even a little (lots, lol) more active. With it though also came, at that time, an unhealthy obsession with body image (perpetrated by the need to look a certain way because of the work environment I was in which ultimately led to my eating disorder going into hyperdrive), an imbalance between work and family (a ratio that looked something like this: family < work), and the overwhelming NEED to make sure I was burning three billion calories a day, seven days a week even if it meant ultimate injury! Well, I’d like to think that I’ve overcome all these things through growth over the years. I’ve learned to TRY not to be so hard on myself when I don’t feel like hiking those 14.5 miles at Mt Tam or doing those six hours at Pt Reyes like i used to do faithfully every weekend but instead accept that I’ve grown into a different, wiser person that now has the option of taking a mini two hour flat hike and enjoying it just as much as i would when and if I choose to do a more intense one. I’d like to think that I’m still working on accepting that im not going to nor do I HAVE to look like the person I used to look like 14 years ago and that I’m in the process of creating a new me. So now fast forwarding to today when all these negative feelings and thoughts reared its ugly head during Yoga class.
I had a wake up call. I practiced Yoga for a total of 3 years several years ago and although the moves are very familiar, even the technical names of the poses are ingrained in to my memory, today was a real challenge because I could hardly hold the pose for more than five seconds let alone without feeling a strain here or a discomfort there! Talk about discouragement. Well, one thing led to another….the strains and pose holding micro seconds led to frustration, frustration led to digust with the fact that I’ve let myself get to the point of such low strength and endurance and this led to me allowing my emotions to overrule everything I’ve fought so hard to keep in check these past years: feeling like an unworthy fitness professional who can talk the talk EXTREMELY WELL but obviously has stopped walking the walk and it ultimately led to me leaving Yoga the last 30 minutes of class IN TEARS! Yes, life happens but when it comes to health and fitness aren’t I suppose to have the upper hand because of my experience, knowledge and education? Shouldn’t I have been able to nip MY OWN health and fitness in the bud so that it didn’t get this bad? This is one of the imbalances ive struggled with the last 14 years and I guess today was a reminder that I need to reevaluate some things concerning this. For those 2.16 persons who have my blog site address and those 1.67 of them that actually bother to come and read it, I’d love it if you have any feedback you’d like to share! 🙂
As I was getting in my daily 5 mile walk yesterday, I was also emailing a friend of mine. We both have had some of the same struggles in life weight wise in terms of gaining and losing, being and staying motivated, doing and not doing things that aren’t necessarily “healthy” for ourselves etc. and JSB, if you’re reading this, you know exactly what I’m talking about, lol!
The conversation topic was me renewing my subscription to the Bodybugg program and commenting on her joining weight watchers. Both weight management programs. I mentioned how although I complained about my body back in 1998-2000, when I was in the best shape I’ve ever been in (definition of that is eating right, working out regularly, actively doing the recreational things I love doing, etc.), I would KILL (or die) to get that back! To be the weight I was and have the body fat percentage I had then because now, I’m much heavier, my workouts are scattered and I have to work harder to get and stay motivated. Sucks, yes it does!
The lesson to be learned here is this: learn to find balance between wanting to improve who you are now and being appreciative that you aren’t worse off because six months from now you could be 50 pounds heavier with high blood pressure, diabetes or some disease that could have been prevented through lifestyle change and you’ll be thinking back to the heavy you’re so dissatisfied with today wishing you could go back to it.
Funny how life has a way of teaching lessons via retrospect. It’s up to us as to whether we choose to apply them.
This year I have written down a lot of goals. Most of them involve things that will help me be a better “me” on the inside and then theres the ones that will make me a more knowledgeable “me” such as things I want to learn but at the top of the list is the goal of surrounding myself with what I call like-minded people. In general, I’m what you call a loner. I have friends, but I prefer to be by myself most of the time however this year I’ve resolved to be more sociable and surround myself with people I have something in common with not just on an intellectual level but interests as well. I want to be around people who have goals and desires and aren’t just talking about them but actually getting up and aspiring towards them. Believe me, I know a lot of people right now who want this and want that, are going to do this, going to do that but it’s all talk! They don’t get off the couch or out the house or from in front of the computer long enough to make it happen. Don’t get me wrong, I’m totally not knocking being in front of the computer half your life since I’m a computer junky myself. Even I had to find balance between getting out of the house and breathing the closest thing to fresh air and sitting in front of my PC (or laying back with my laptop).
My point is, although their are many different types of people in the world and you’re going to interact with many that you don’t have anything in common with, you have a choice as to who you hang out with and this year I’ve chosen to find people that – and this may sound crazy – have common sense and use it, are half way intelligent (80% would be even better), have goals that contribute positively to their life in order to improve who they are and who genuinely have similar interests that I do. (I hate the ones that pretend to like something and it just happens to be something you like, but it’s all in the name of impressing you or thinking it makes them look better, grrrrr! Such a pathetic waste of mind energy!)
Anyway, in closing, I just want to make sure that I’m not coming across as thinking that a person shouldn’t have a variety of friends with different tastes, backgrounds, intellect, etc. That’s definitely what I’m NOT saying. I just believe that if a person is at a certain place in life, that they shouldn’t be weighed down by people who aren’t there yet and refuse to do anything to improve upon it.