A poem about Divorce- Maybe

Maybe

Maybe we’re getting divorced because you put the stick of butter in front of the butter dish instead of in it.

Maybe we’re getting divorced because I vacuum and you just can’t see the dirt.

Maybe we’re getting divorced because I make more money than you and you stayed home to raise our boys.

Or the long commute or the fact that you snore when you sleep or the way my voice goes up an octave when I am really upset…Or the affairs and lies (yours, mine, ours) or the time you screamed that you hated me, you really hated me

There are a lot of relationships that survive more than this, you said.
You weren’t specific. One of our faceless therapists nods.
They don’t get divorced, you said. And “divorced” sounded poisonous, wrong.

You are right and I nod but in my heart my reasons are enough.
They all add up and congeal into one concise document with all of the wording just right.
The blame is left out of the margins and neat sentences cover up all of the pieces that read between the lines

You bend over to sign.

The pen smudges and curves

It no longer matters.

The end remains the same

Abuse and the Empath

loveWhen I was child, I was abused by my father. When I did anything wrong, I was beaten with either a hand or belt. I was most scared of the thinner belts.  They hurt the most.  My father has a “funny” story that he used to tell when we would be sitting around the dinner table.  It went something like this…

I was four or five and I had wandered around the block.  This was wrong. I was not allowed to go past the house with the big white pillars and the small porch.  This was a rule, but I had broken it.  Perhaps I was chasing a butterfly, maybe I just wanted to openly defy the rule. I don’t remember why I broke this rule; I just remember that I did.  As a cycled back around the corner, I saw my father’s angry eyes.  His mouth was twisted and I knew that he was furious.  I knew that I was caught.

“Don’t beat me, Daddy,” I cried as I put my hands across my behind to try and save myself from a subsequent beating.  My father’s face changed as he glanced at the few neighbors who were watering their gardens are putting out their potted plants.  He smiled and bent to the ground, supporting himself on one knee.

“It’s ok, baby,” he said soothingly.  “I am not going to hurt you.” I smiled and ran into his arms.  He hugged me as he carried me into the house.  I buried my tear-stained face into his neck and sighed.  I did not notice that we were walking back towards the house.

And this is the part my father always thought was most amusing, the part that he would chuckle while saying,

“So here she thinks she got me,” he would continue.  “She thought she could manipulate me and embarrass me in front of the neighbors, but I showed her.  When I got her inside, I spanked her so hard she didn’t even know what hit her, and I made sure she really knew I was serious because I really laid into her.  She never did that again.”

And I didn’t do that again…throughout my life, I don’t think I ever did that again.  How terribly did that scar me?

I find it difficult to trust men.

I believe all men lie to me or are going to hurt me if I give them an ounce of trust.

I fear men and the things they are capable of doing to me.

How does a person have an intimate relationship with a person of the opposite gender when this is just one “story” in a vast sea of abuse?

How long will it take me to walk away from these stories to find myself in the rubble of a broken childhood, a broken marriage, a broken life?

I know that dwelling on this past and sitting in these stories detract me from the present moment and feed my victim story, so I am trying to relinquish them to a time that is no longer here, but I do feel a sense of loss when I think about letting this story go.  I do feel like this story shaped me, but at the same time I also feel like it is keeping me small.  It is keeping me from freedom.

I am not that five year old girl holding her butt in front of her angry father.  There are no large men lurking in the distance waiting to beat me for my wrongdoings, but I still act as if I am.

How do I let go?  By writing it here in this sacred space?  Maybe by telling the truth about my past, I can let each story go with a touch of the “publish” button, shedding each layer of skin one story at a time.

And perhaps I need to be reminded of the following:

“You have to be larger than thought to realize that however you interpret “your life” or someone else’s life or behavior, however you judge any situation, it is no more than a viewpoint, one of many total perspectives.” – Eckhart Tolle

Love, Desire, Anger, Hate- Emotions and the Empath

Most-pretty-white-and-purple-flowersAfter addressing love, I thought I would create the juxtaposition with hatred.  First, I’ll address desire. The partner to love is often desire.  Desire is a bubbly, surface emotion that has a very short shelf life.  It is a quick hard-hitting emotion that often hits me in the stomach when I feel it on someone else.  Desire, as another’s emotion, blindsided me.  I often find my own thought forms in the mix.  “Really?  You are turned on by that?”  When someone desires me, it is intoxicating.  As a woman, I can feed into a man’s sexual desire for me.  I have literally felt like what it feels like to desire myself.  It’s pretty crazy.  I have literally turned myself on.  On the flip side, if a person is just not that into the moment, I can feel that too, and there is no going past it.  My own ego will often get in the way and I halt the proceedings.  Well, if You are just not that into me…but I digress.

Anger is the partner of hatred.  Like love and desire, they do not have to go hand in hand, but the most powerful hatred is always backed by anger.  Anger is fleeting and can blow up one moment and be completely cleared the next.  Anger by itself is a weak emotion.  When it is paired with a deep-seated hatred, it is toxic and destructive.  Hatred is like love.  I can feel it running through a person.  It is a thick, dark strip.  Unlike love that feels like solid light, hatred is dark.  It darkens everything around it.  It also grows roots and creates a permanent housing in the core of you.  It will then use anger to feed itself.  It does not even have to be anything that is joined to the original events or person that formed the hatred.  It will feed on anything.  Hatred feels unmovable and hard.  It gets stronger and more entrenched with each angry, hurtful incident. It makes the person have this deluded sense of power and strength. It feels true to them, and my logical mind has to counter with the idea that it is just not true.
A woman in my department has a deep hatred for men that has been built and strengthened over many years. She uses anger to feed it constantly and she truly believes that this anger motivates her to do her best. She says she is motivated by anger to make positive changes in her life and it works for her. The energy created by this feels awful to an Empath and she is difficult to be around. The hatred feels like a mountain of stone that sits in the core of her. The anger buzzes around it like larger-than-life birds. These are the visual images I get when I am around her. She is so entrenched that even when I try to suggest letting go of her anger, she reacts and the birds collectively charge. “No,” she says. “It helps me. It makes me stronger.” But none of this is true. She believes it. It is not a lie for her.
Do not try and see how much hatred you have inside of you with your head. Place your attention to the core of you. You will feel it stop you. It will try and convince you that it must be there. It is a part of you, but this is not true. It only stops love. Love can replace it.