Sunday, November 11, 2007

Internally Self Defined...

Oddly enough my passion for writing came about as a result of my need to find recovery from an emotionally bankrupt childhood. I began a journey unearthing emotional / spiritual issues, seeking to understand how the effects of my childhood interfered and frustrated the present. I began to piece together not only how Dad’s aloofness and acts of rage affected me as a boy, but also how it affected my Mom so that she could not give my sister and I the substantial attention we needed. She was so submerged under dreadful marital problems and this affected her health in the form of migraines, ulcers and great bouts of depression. In short, she did what any human being would do under the circumstances -- she involuntarily detached herself from us because of the traumas.

How did this lack of attention affect me in the present? In terms of emotional investment, I grew up with my love tank on empty. Phillip McGraw writes the following that has helped me tremendously to understand the dynamics that I now need to work on.¨Studies of newborn babies show that unless we receive love, our survival is in jeopardy for the first days of our lives. As we grow up, if we are not convinced that we have it, we will go through life trying to find it.

There is a certain way in which we need to be touched, held and regarded behaviorally and emotionally. If we feel deprived, even from an early age, and before we have the vocabulary to describe it, we will be driven in our lives to find it. That drive can be so powerful as to dominate our thinking and motivations and therefore our choices through life. Some of your most critical choices in life may have resulted from your need for, your search for a love that, whether real or imagined, you felt was elusive. … The more your internally defined self-esteem is lacking, the more you are vulnerable to external influence. In short, if you aren’t ¨squared away¨ with yourself, they can ¨get to you¨ from the outside. The world will pick on self-doubt like it is an open wound. As a result, you can find yourself making decisions driven by a need to build how you feel about yourself, but from all the wrong resources. Simply put, if you don’t love, believe in, and accept yourself, you will try to find someone else to do it for you. Seeking that validation so desperately from someone other than yourself can have a huge effect on the choices you make.¨

This is why we need to cultivate our own garden not waiting for someone else to bring us flowers. Only when we feel complete can we truly share with freedom. We cannot be that empty wine bottle that gets filled by a vineyard not our own. We won't find love outside because it's already inside us. That is why I journal and write poetry. I find that's where God, creativity and I meet! Love is not only something we already possess, but something no one can take away. As someone once wrote, ¨Dreams live or die inside our heart!¨


No comments: