Middle of the Night Ah-ha
Two days with not enough sleep. I’ve been slogging my way through recognition that my mind’s critical voice is my dad’s and the fear that came up that if I let go of that he would not love me (he’s dead, but that doesn’t matter, does it?). That fear was truly kicking my butt.
When I couldn’t sleep last night, I figured what the heck, let’s dig in. I did a rundown with Byron Katie’s The Work. It’s easy to do by yourself and in the dark. The “Turn it around” step is what does it. It took a few passes with some good insights at each level. At the end I got up to write down the ah-ha (messy because I didn’t turn on the lights) so I could use it here. It was about one a.m.
Translation: I am really angry at myself. Family is the first, best reflection we have of our “self” or identities. They are the first place we look to see our shortcomings and assets reflected. I thought I was hurt by my dad’s critical voice. I thought I was angry at my sister for what she hasn’t done. Turns out I was angry at myself for what I think I haven’t accomplished. All stuff I’ve been afraid to do. The fear showed up as anger. It was all about me.
Really, how could it ever be about anyone else? To my ego-mind no one else really exists — only I do and my needs.
It’s funny and tragic – seeing that legacy of “not good enough” passed through families like an auto-immune disease — in subtle and not-so-subtle ways. I had never thought of my dad as being self-critical, but for that voice to come out, he must have been. He must have had expectations of himself to accomplish, to be, to have…. Since I don’t believe there’s a heaven or that he’s “listening,” but I am. It was late, but I had the loving, compassionate conversation with myself.