What is love?

What is love?

Growing up I always had insecurities surrounding love. From the moment I was created I was told how no on truly wanted me. My mother battling her own demons at the time and my father addicted to drugs were incapable of being able to fully devote all love to me. When I was created my mother had found out that she had cancer. From what I’ve been told Melanoma is the only form of cancer that goes from mother to child and my mother prior to conceiving me spent 30 mins in a tanning bed for her first time and developed a 4-5 on her bottom. I don’t have memories of that time clearly with being an infant so I go off of the things I’ve been told through the years. My papa used to tell me he believes deep down my mother wanted to love me but guarded herself due to the fact that I wasn’t supposed to survive the cancer. My mother tells me she was the only one who loved me. The story I’ve been told and brow beat for years with is my mother father and great grandmother were the only ones who came to see me when I was born. My family, mostly Caucasian, didn’t want to accept a multiracial baby into the family. They had tried to convince her to have an abortion. That’s where my mother says her love for me came in. After a few days my family came around and I believe they grew to love me. But imagine the difficulty believing that you could ever be truly loved and accepted by someone hearing this story over and over again at a young age.

I remember falling into a dark and lonely place very often while growing up. I could be in the middle of doing something with my grandparents and randomly ask them, “do you love me?” They would always reply with a yes and list all the reasons of why.

That insecurity has followed me and has carried over into my relationships. I feel unworthy, not good enough, and unloved a majority of the time. No amount of therapy has been able to change that for me. I am very big on actions. Your voice can express to me a million times the love you share for me but what you do is what matters.

I had a partner who would tell me in this tone that he used only when expressing love that they loved me, but in the same breathe do things that weren’t love in my eyes. They would allow family members to degrade me, hit me, disrespect me and try to convince me that it was love. It takes my brain time to wrap itself around the idea that love isn’t a cookie cutter definition. It looks different to everyone. In his eyes maybe abuse was love. I could understand that. In another previous relationship I had paired love with abuse. He would hurt me and return with apologizes and flowers with cards that said I love you. Every hit combined with “I love you, why do you make me do this to you.” I had been convinced for 4 years that love was violence and fights. At the time it made sense to me. My father abused my mother, my mother abused me, my family degraded one another and they all claimed love.

The other night I was talking to a friend who referred to love in almost the same way. I think we learn love and it’s meaning very young. We see the people around us show love in their own ways and we are programmed that it’s how you demonstrate love. I know what love should resemble based on Disney and Romance movies, but that isn’t real life. So how do you truly know how to love if you’ve only seen it in forms of violence and half ass apologizes? How do you rewire years of trauma like that?

I look more and more to my grandparents. The way they interacted with one another is the type of love I yearn for. My Papa never forgot an anniversary or passed up an opportunity to make my Nana feel special. They had their arguments and tough times but when they looked at one another you could feel the electricity they shared. I try to rewire my brain to accept only love in a form as pure as that. The type of love you don’t have to water down. Love isn’t just in partners but love is in friendships as well. My friend tells me love is being your unapologetic self. It’s being able to be open and talk about the hard issues with one another. I look at her and wish to be as confident and secure.

I’m learning there’s no time constraint to heal that past trauma surrounding love. However; you shouldn’t demonstrate the false love you’ve been programmed to show on others and refer to it as such.

Sincerely,

Me

Changes

Changes

Index finger flexing on and off my fully lit screen. “What do I even reply to this?” I say to myself through the tears. I click in and out. Starting, erasing, and retyping my message. “Is there even a point?” My biggest insecurities being shoved down my throat by my own destructive thoughts. Im always the one who cares more, tries more, gives up last.

I respect your decision

One of the biggest lies. I didn’t respect it. I didn’t understand it. But I had to be okay with it.

In that moment I decided I would never give anyone the power to break me again. I’ve said this a million times…..but I meant it this time.I put to much into the people I care about most. In a matter of 5 months I had experienced some of the biggest heartbreaks while trying to heal from my past. “Now? Now is the time you want to walk out”, I think to myself, “This is when you decide to hurt me?” Timing is everything and at the time I thought this was the worst thing that could happen. Who Chooses to give up on someone they care about during times like these?

I could never do this to you

The same 7 words I thought to myself for each individual betrayal. “This is a permanent decision to a very temporary situation.” I spoke out loud as if I could be heard through the just sent message. This is something that I won’t be able to forgive. How could I? I know myself and as bad as I didn’t want it to be true……I knew in that moment my view of you had changed. I could never look at you the same way I once did.

After weeks of self pity and displaced anger I began to pick myself back up. There is nothing like a heartbreak to make you start your soul journey.

In 2015 after my life actually began to take flight I embarked on a spiritual journey. Derailment happened as it will and In November of 2016 I went through an Evolution course taught by Truth Irvine. It was one of the greatest things I could have done. I learned how to love myself, put me first, set boundaries, and let go of so much trauma. I felt renewed. I remember waking up on morning and thinking I had finally reached enlightenment. I forced myself to be happy every morning and I just knew that I had really understood the meaning of that insightful weekend. Do I have to say it or do you already know what’s coming next?

Yea you’re right….I was wrong. I didn’t know crap about enlightenment. Two failed pregnancies later and I was right back in the darkness that I was trying so hard to escape. I let it consume me. Drinking, partying, and all the escapades to numb the hurt that I didn’t want to address. If I push it down and don’t think about it then it’s not real. It never happened right? My idea of dealing with my shit was pretending it didn’t exist.

Years of doing this brought me to two tours in outpatient therapy due to a failed suicide attempt and on the verge of another. 5 days out of the week I was either in group, individual, or processing therapy and classes. It wasn’t until the second go around that I really understood the key ingredient I had been missing all these years. It’s okay to be sad, it’s okay to be angry, it’s okay to be anxious.

It is what it is

Those key words. I can’t judge the emotions. What good is that going to do? I can’t change the people around me. I can either express myself and my feelings to the person at hand and if that doesn’t work then accept it or let them go. In the previous heartbreaks I spoke of in the beginning I chose to accept one and let the other two go. Learning that you can’t heal in the same environment that made you sick is something I find myself saying daily. I’ve taught people in the past how they can treat me by what I’ve allowed them to do or them see others do. I’ve allowed people to hurt me, walk away, and then waltz right back in again. That wasn’t healthy or healing for me.

This time around I feel so well rounded. Knowing that it’s okay to not be okay is so healing in itself. Just realizing the judging of my thoughts and emotions and letting them just be that. Emotions without judgement is so peaceful in a way. I’m not saying I don’t cry or get angry because I do, but I don’t root myself in it. I’m not living there any longer. An hour or two and then I wash my hands of it till the tomorrow when I allocate time for it again.

During the past 2 months I’ve said goodbye to people I never thought I’d let go of, left my job of 8+ years, strengthened some friendships with some old friends, made some new friends, saying no more….especially to people who don’t contribute to my growth, and started school for a career in a field I wanted to join right after high school. So many changes that I never would have done before. I’m a firm believer that rock bottom can be the solid foundation you can build up from.

I am communicating how I feel in a more productive way as well. Depression, anger and frustration can be brought on by lack of communication or understanding. I’m learning to admit when I’m wrong and stand my ground when I’m not. I express my feelings and don’t allow them to be diminished.

I think there is some type of ease in knowing that things will never be perfect, but they will be okay. You will be happy as long as you allow yourself to be the main source of happiness. At the end of the day you have yourself and that has to be enough.

Sincerely me

I pick you, I want you

Waking up with my heart pounding with feelings of breathlessness. I dreaded the day ahead. This was a constant battle for me after my breakup. I was so consumed with the dire need to see him, to feel him, to breathe in his scent. It was like I was withdrawing from a drug.

The old mess of a girl that I was always became so dependent on her partner. I had a clingy vibe to me. My significant other and I spent every waking moment together. I was no longer a “me” I was always referred to as a “we” or “you guys”. I had a bad case of codependency.
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The years after my breakup I struggled so hard to find myself again. During that relationship lost all of who I was and who I used to be. My friends were replaced with his, my family taken over and flipped into as well. Love can do that to you sometimes. If you submerge yourself so deeply in someone as much as I did it can control you. I needed a rehab to get clean of him. I needed my ex like you need air to breathe. So cliche and over used, but its true. When we went our separate ways I couldn’t function alone. I developed a need to call him, Skype him, text him multiple times a day. He was my drug and I needed a fix. I dragged the non existent relationship on for months.

During this spiritual quest I have learned the power of being alone. Ive gained myself again. I am an “I” I am Marissa. It has never felt so good to enjoy my alone time.

With my current partner I don’t need him. Which sounds as if I don’t love him nearly as much, but I don’t believe that to be the case. I could live without my current partner. Id be sad and I’m sure I’d lose sleep, but I’d function. Id pick myself up by the boot straps and continue to live. I think thats the beauty of it all. I chose him every single day. I have decided on him. I want him. Thats what makes it so special. I don’t feel like my oxygen supply has been cut off when he leaves for trips. I miss him, but I manage without him. Its a simplistic kind of love, but its amazing.

You have to be you. Don’t consume yourself with someone else. Making them your sole reason for existence. You lose yourself. I have been working so hard these past years with trying to find myself again and its been the toughest battle yet. Im not completely there, but I’m a work in progress and you know what, that’s okay. I am me.

Sincerely me