Wednesday, 1 April 2009

Learning to Let GO

My husband and I have been going to a marriage counselor. The stress of twins and living on one income in a very expensive city has had its toll on us. Things weren't horrible, they never really are with us but they just got......flat and we were snapping at each other a lot. So we decided to make ourselves divorce proof and got help. We are actually really enjoying it.

In our bi-weekly sessions one of the things that has come up is that both of us are only children. Neither of us was particularly spoiled but we were and are very independent and have never had to consider someone into all we do. I was also raised by a very hard working single mom and spent an enormous amount of time by myself. This isn't a terribly bad thing, I enjoy time alone but when you learn how to cook at a young age because your mom works late a lot......some habits of lonerness are formed. It also doesn't give you a very good blueprint on what a working marriage looks like or how it functions.

And to digress, I was married in 1997 to someone else. The marriage lasted two years and it was the hardest two years of my life followed by more hard years. My first husband had some serious problems and the only way I knew how to love him was trying to fix him. The problems is, you can't fix people and so I spent an enormous amount of time propping up our lives to make it look like we were ok. I took care of everything and I was good at it. I wasn't good at fixing him but I was good at something so I kept doing it. All it did was confirm my independence.

I was raised a girl, surprise surprise, with all the fairy tales, barbie dolls and living happily ever after. I don't think I ever believed that a knight on a white horse would come and 'rescue' me. Why would I think that with a mom that was working her ass of to get by? But I knew that I didn't want to do it the way my mom did. I wanted a partner, a lover, a husband, a Big Daddy. And absolutely no fucking idea how to do it. And this is where the counselor has been helpful. The part of marriage that my husband and I aren't good at is 'making clear our needs'. As totally unromantic as it is you have to teach your partner how to look after you. Once this is learned then you can relax into the romance that you are being unspokenly taken care of. Truth is, I wasn't saying anything and then getting resentful that my emotional needs weren't getting met. The weird thing about all this is once my husband and I started doing this everything changed. I didn't have to silently take care of everything, as the habit goes, and hate him for not participating. It has also made me realize that I am married to a really nice guy and the fact that he is so willing to go to the counsellor and listen to her advice and use it.........But the problem with this is it has left me in a position of having to 'deal with my shit' and I don't like it.

I believe strongly in 'The Mind Body Connection'. I think a great deal of our physical health is connected to our mental health. I have always felt more connection with eastern philosophy and the eastern philosophy about medicine. Yeah Yeah Western medicine is fantastic and Weeeeeeee science but at what point do we stop treating the symptoms and start to treat the disease?

I don't feel good and I don't mean 'I can't kick this cold' but just generally under the weather for over 10 years. Its not all the time and I know it sounds crazy but it has been along time since I felt 'good'. I have been tested for everything and there have been some breakthroughs including a diagnoses of Hashimotos disease which they said might have been causing some of the other health issues. So now I am on Synthroid for the rest of my life but the problem is that I still don't feel great and have been unable to lose any of a steady weight gain that started with the demise of my first marriage. And then it happened, in discussion with the counselor the first marriage came up and how I have 'survived', and the emotional luggage that I have been dragging around with me and it all started to make sense. In Chinese medicine the thyroid is part of the throat chakra. Illness and disease in this area is from being unable to speak your mind or 'find your voice'. And then I cried. I knew then that my thyroid gave up after years of me not saying what had to be said, of me not defending myself and I had been gaining weight as a result of a dying thyroid and a way to create a shell to protect myself and block out the outside world.

But now that I have this information, I am a little unsure as to what to do with it. I know the obvious but how does that work in actual life? How to you set it into motion? How do you let go?

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