I’ve been embracing my spiritual path and allowing it to take me in the direction it wants to take me in. One of the barriers I’ve been examining that prevented me from embracing my spiritual experiences was the desire I had to want to share everything with my family. I reasoned that if I couldn’t share it, I shouldn’t do it, often negating the reasons as to why I didn’t want to share certain things with my family.
My family is enmeshed with each other. Within this unit I felt I was only allowed to explore to the extent that was comfortable for them; thus, certain experiences were not allowed. My mom often took offense to me not identifying as Christian. My family reasoned my spiritual experiences were demonic. I wasn’t actually allowed to carry certain political ideologies or beliefs that differed from them. I didn’t feel accepted and supported if I did something different so the only way to feel safe was to accept what was within the confines of what was given, despite how small it felt.
The family I speak of is my mom and her five siblings, three of them in particular. From up close they seemed to carry an overarching thread of doom and gloom for me. As a unit they seemed menacing and I felt so full of fear and uncertainty surrounding how they’d react to me, my beliefs, my feelings, my perceptions, and the direction I choose to move in my life. Often times when I felt the panic of “going crazy” in regards to my spiritual gifts emerging, I really saw their faces judging me or treating me like I’m different. It occurred to me that because my mother and her siblings were very protective and very involved in my life, I never got the chance to experience anything different. My father seemed almost non-existent in my later years. Unlike my cousins who were able to have a relationship with both sides of their parent’s families, I had a bit more of a singular experience and, unfortunately, it wasn’t healthy.
When I take a step back, I realize that while my family is toxic for me and my growth, my mother did the best she could. In many ways she too is unable to stand up to the dysfunction of her family members. While she has five other siblings, two of them often try to avoid the craziness of the others and try not to get them so deeply involved in their lives so as to not be controlled.
I understand now that it’s not ‘lying’ or ‘secrecy’ to not want to tell everyone everything or to not feel the need to have your family involved in every aspect of your life. I understand now that the people I’ve been allowing to affect my life are dysfunctional, unhealthy, and in order to grow into the person I want to be, I have to lovingly let them go.
I’m in pain. In my heart I feel pain. I see now that for all these years the things I was fighting to gain from them wasn’t from a place of “wrongness” or “demanding” or “spoiled” behavior. I see now that me voicing my opinion or how I felt and having it not be heard or respected was more about them trying to maintain power and not acknowledging my feelings. I understand now that what I was trying to voice to them all these years was what I needed in order to grow: healthy boundaries.
What I need from my family right now, particularly those four members, is for them to give me space and leave me alone. What I need from myself is the willingness to go forth with my growth process.