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that aint mine

04 May

When I was dating my now ex-wife, I once told her that I set my moods from the music I listen to. She never understood that. In hindsight, I wonder if I was simply a mirror of emotion. I was never really sure of how I felt about things and would take on the mood and attitude of those around me. I would pick friends and dates that displayed the emotion I wanted to feel. I had no autonomy of emotion. I simply didn’t know how to allow myself to feel. That sounds bizarre, doesn’t it? When I was growing up, I wasn’t allowed to be mad. We were sent to our room to think about it. I wasn’t allowed to be sad either. As a kid, I was a bit of a crybaby. Unfortunately, every time I cried I got a bloody nose as well. I don’t know why. When I was upset about breaking up with a girlfriend in college and cried, my mom asked me to stay away until I could smile again. My wife used to tell me to not feel someway or another. I assumed that was how everyone did it and so I felt the way she told me to.

This last weekend I had the occasion to be around some pretty angry people taking pot shots at me. I felt a little like wonder woman deflecting bullets as I chanted that the emotions they ascribed to me were not mine.

I wonder if that is part of the reason my marriage ended. I felt unable to share true emotions with my ex, despite repeatidly trying. I was shunned. My need for intimacy left unreceived. I tried to set up emotional boundaries for myself. I needed to feel as I felt. I laughed, I rejoiced, I wallowed, I cried all when I needed to. I was empathetic but not sympathetic. That didn’t go over very well. I tried to explain that if I didn’t do that, I would retreat back into myself and stop living again. I needed to be alive. There was lip service to understanding and an undercurrent of hostility.

My wonder woman esque bracelets are getting a bit fatigued. IT is hard work deflecting emotions that aren’t mine. I defend my heart by waving my bracelet clad arms around. I know that I cant feel for other people. I try and understand their feelings without absorbing them. IT isn’t easy for me. I seem to be a sponge…a mirrored sponge. There are times the bullets ricochet off my bracelets and lodge in my brain or heart. I am getting better about combating the onslaught.

Victory comes more and more often. My ex saying that I am a deadbeat but admitting she doesn’t send me bills. “That aint mine.” My daughter spewing venom to cover her fear and hurt, “That aint mine.” The ex-in-laws (outlaws?) saying nasty things about me and to me, “That aint mine.” The medical boards rejecting me. “That aint mine.”

God telling me I am loved, unconditionally. “That’s mine.”

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1 Comment

Posted by on May 4, 2014 in faith, life

 

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One response to “that aint mine

  1. Susan Irene Fox

    May 4, 2014 at 5:22 pm

    Ages ago, I used to absorb other people’s emotions. Then I got these two visuals in my head: I could either be a sponge, which sucked everything up, or a tube, which let everything flow through me but didn’t absorb a drop. Once I chose the tube (or chute, in some cases), it became easier.

    We all have emotions; to deny them is to deny the way we were all created. It’s important and healthy to distinguish your feelings from those of someone else. Sounds like you’re doing just that.

     

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