This is the hardest, breaking the ties that have gnarled their way around my core and lodged in my belly. They are mixed up with my roots, with childhood, with connection. It is difficult to unwind them, and harder to know which ones to cut completely.
Telling my parents about the initial job offer was a disaster. My father faded into the couch, silent, while my mother screamed verbal and emotional abuse at me. It was an ugly two minutes that confirmed what I already knew to be true about her instability and his complete inability. It cut deep, walking out of that house hearing the absolute lack of concern about my life. It rang in my ears for days the way she snarled “I don’t give a fuck about you or your job.” Then the old pattern of her reaching out, but pretending all was well. I ignored her messages the best I could and finally sent a clear and brief outline of what I needed to be able to engage with them again; an apology, acknowledgement, and a meeting between us in a public lunch place. The message has, so far, been ignored.
Today is my dad’s birthday. I didn’t call. Finally tonight, after reading some Facebook posts about him being sad, I had my daughter call. It is so hard to know where the boundaries are in dealing with unstable people. The call went well and I am left with what all children of alcoholic, unstable, narcissists are left with – guilt.
Breaking these ties is the hardest. The ones my family programmed me with from birth on up. The loud messages now echoing in my head that I shouldn’t leave here, that I’m hurting people, and the biggest wicked vow of all – that I should suffer to make other people happy, that my own happiness is insignificant when compared to others’. This must be the spell I have felt myself undoing.
Right now, there is just the guilt and fear.
Fear about leaving – what if it’s the wrong thing to do, what if I fail, what if no one hires me now that I’ve turned down the one offer I had? Guilt about causing other people pain – what if I’m being a selfish person, what if I break everyone’s heart and no good comes of it, what if something horrible happens to my parents because we aren’t here and they don’t have my daughter to focus on, keeping them out of trouble?
These demons are attacking. Also feelings of selfishness – how dare I chase my dreams of leaving here!
Breaking these ties, undoing this wicked vow, this is uncharted territory. I feel lost at sea and a storm has started. The sky seems dark, except for those bolts of lightning being hurled my way.
I find myself surprised to be pulled to call on the Archangel Michael, with his bright shining righteousness, his shield and sword. A quick Google search shows me that this is not unusual work for Michael, he is often called upon to cut ties from that which is not serving us and our Higher good/God. The image of the sword is often a comfort to me, but it is this picture of Michael that speaks to me right now. He bows, presumably before God. He surrenders.