It was January 2011. I had had enough. There was no break from the anger, resentment, and guilt. My relationship with my mother had become volatile and tense because of her mental illnesses and her opiate addiction. She had become impossibly belligerent, and, on this night, she attacked, not just me, but my young children causing them to run in terror and lock themselves away. As quick as turning on a light, I transformed from an endlessly abused and victimized daughter into a fierce mama lion protecting her cubs and her den. After forty years, I found my strength, threw my mother out of my home, and never spoke to her again.
This is my story, but it is also the story of millions of others who grew up in homes rife with emotional abuse, gaslighting, uncertainty, fear, guilt, shame, blame, and the feeling that nothing was safe.
I contorted myself into foreign forms to meet my mother's expectations, to fit in with the kids at school, to find a place where I felt safe, to try to find love I could count on. I was so busy making others happy that I had completely lost sight of myself and what I wanted. It was hard to imagine my life if I stopped trying to fit myself into the mold of what everyone expected of me.
- Would I finally feel loved and cared for?
- Would I learn how it felt to be truly safe?
- How would I even figure out who I was and what I wanted?
- Would I ever have a home where I felt in control and at peace?
- How could I take apart a marriage that mirrored the toxicity I shared with my mother?
- How could I unravel all the unmet expectations, shameful feelings, guilt, and fear that these patterns would repeat themselves with my own children?
- Was I brave enough to be vulnerable and face all the pain and trauma to heal myself and make sense of it all?
I had no idea the answers to any of these questions.
All I knew was that something had to change because I could no longer carry on like this.
I gave myself permission to step out of the darkness my life had become and learn to find my own light.
I gave myself permission to take back control of my life and learn to live into my purpose, find meaning and joy, learn to love myself, and become the person, the mother, the daughter, the teacher, the creative visionary I had always secretly
known I was meant to be.
My hope for you is that by me feeling safe to reveal my processes and my healing journey you will feel safe to reveal and share yours. As I lay bare my own awakening process you will be able to start to envision yours.
My path might be different from yours, but the humanity of my feelings and experiences, my struggles and traumas, my healing and salvation are things we all share.
We all experien