9 MINUTE READ
I’ve got a bunch of writing prompts that I will start using and my journal entries. It will be a fun companion to help me stay inspired and keep going on this marathon of journal writing. I was happy to see that these Journal prompts are precisely what I want to record, reexamine and explore my memories as a form of healing and self-development.
So today, I’m starting with the question, “What is standing in my way right now?” The timing of this question is interesting since I’ve already written about how nothing is standing in my way! Although that is true, there is potentially much to explore with this question.
Also, as I’ve written in previous posts, I celebrate my baby steps. Week after week, I say I will start this one main work task, and then other things seem to get in the way. But what I genuinely feel is happening is my ego is being impatient, and my ego thinks that I’m running behind and not “doing it good enough” by getting to this one work task. But what’s happening is I’ve been building up a strong base from which to launch this work task that’s so important. Like, take last week, for instance. As in previous weeks, I decided it was time to start this work tasks that I was excited about when I got a bunch of emails saying a link in my emails was broken. I realized that the work I had done the week before broke almost all the emails I sent to people, and I had to spend the rest of the week fixing it. It was okay news since I had been aching to change those emails for a while. I felt like I needed to start this other work task I’d mentioned. Last week, I planned to start the new work tasks and the other half of my time fixing these emails. But instead, I realized that these emails were urgent, so I sent them and felt good!
Before I move on to the next journal prompt, I want to explore a block I have overcome but still deal with. It’s a specific voice in my head that used to hold me back more in the past. It’s still there, but it’s more of a whisper that I get to ensure it is not controlling me. When this voice comes up, it says something very specific, which I find helpful because that means it’s easy to identify. The voice says, “I don’t feel like it.” unfortunately, this is a very loaded statement in my consciousness. I’m happy to say that it’s not even “mine.” as I said. However, sometimes it still does come up. When it does, I use my intuitive tools to see if this obstacle, fear, or other ego manifestation is holding me back.
When I say,” I don’t feel like it.” it is not mine; I genuinely mean it. And I’m grateful that I discovered what it was, what it was doing, where it came from, and who it came from over a year and a half ago.
Trigger Warning: When I moved back in with my parents during the pandemic and discovered that they were not feeding their cat, I naturally had several discussions with them that eventually turned into desperation with a lot of confusion and unease. When the last conversations I had with both of them about it turned into me screaming and crying the words, “If a baby is screaming and crying, there’s something it needs. It can’t talk and say I’m hungry, but that’s one of the first things you check.” I had to say those words because the cat sounded like a dying baby. It’s not even me who described it like that, but it’s true.
One day when I was in the kitchen, several hours after, the cat should have been fed breakfast. I found my mom sitting at the kitchen table. This time I remained calm when I asked her if she would feed the cat. She responded no, even though the food was very close to where she was sitting, and the cat was crying like a hungry, helpless baby. When I asked her why she would not feed her cat, my mom responded, “I don’t feel like it.”
A few weeks later, when my entire biological family had orphaned me, I had trouble feeding myself for the first time. I knew I was hungry, had the food on hand, and ensured it was healthy and delicious. And when it was sitting right in front of me, the voice would be booming, and it would say, “I don’t feel like it.” this was a terrifying yet compelling realization that those with the exact words that my mother used when she was starving her cat. I don’t know for sure, but it makes sense that this is something she might have said when I was forced only to eat my family’s crust of their pizza, and only if they felt like saving it for me after watching them eat said pizza, and not giving anything more to eat. I have often wondered why I was not given other food. I’ve seen examples of very young children who either can’t eat or don’t want to eat the meal that is offered to others. The caregivers give the young child a meal they can eat, different than the adults. I know that the abuse that I suffered was horrific. I know the terrible things my family went through before I was born that pushed them toward this extremely damaging behavior. As many people pull out, lots of people extreme indoor abuse and do not become abusers themselves and or do not become narcissists. I don’t think we have the answer as to why some turn and others don’t. I also don’t think I’ll be able to find why I was forced to sit there and watch my family eat pizza, only allowed to eat the crusts, and only if the rest of my family didn’t want to eat theirs. However, I feel the statement “I don’t feel like it.” has something to do with it.
So as I said now, that statement whispers to me that, more often than not, it’s my ego trying to self-sabotage me. But I’m lucky that it’s easy to identify, like seeing a stop sign on the road. I know why it’s there, what it’s trying to do, and that it’s primarily unhealthy, and I have a simple tool to check to see if it’s right. As you can see, “I don’t feel like it.” is not used healthily as a lot more loaded than it is in most other people’s lives. It is so the thing I hear before I journal every day. The days that I journal are the days that I overcome that voice. And here I am today.
The next journal prompt is: “What would happen if you overcome the obstacle? But, more importantly, what would happen if you didn’t ( thanks for all the emotional and physical financial, etcetera)?
I do, for the most part, think that I have overcome this obstacle. And overcoming is obstacle has led me to where I am today. I just saw a YouTube video confirming the sneaking suspicion I had all along: emotional abuse causes brain damage. Emotional abuse caused by narcissism and gaslighting it’s something that I have unfortunately witnessed and experienced for most of my life. Based on what I saw in my biological family (disclaimer with no scientific evidence to back it up), I had this theory that the emotional abuse the men experienced in my birth family caused their brains to deteriorate. At the same time, the abusers, in this case, the women, suffered greatly in their physical bodies. Still, their mental capacity stayed relatively sharp (albeit warped from controlling and narcissistic behaviors). I saw this happen in several marriages in my family of origin. Then when I was married to a covert narcissist, I felt the effects myself and what I thought then and still think now is that my frontal lobe was atrophying. From years of gaslighting, anxiety, and learned helplessness, I was becoming more clumsy, it was harder for me to learn new things, and I felt like my intelligence was declining. Well, that YouTube video confirms that neuroscientists have proven this.
There is a silver lining to this news. There have been several previous journal entries where I mention how much faster my cognition is and how I feel my intelligence is increasing. It’s easier for me to remember things. It’s easier for me to learn new things and make complex calculations. I attributed that increase in intelligence (AKA ack of brain fog) to the ridding of all the toxic relationships in my life. I think that is a big reason for my excellent and swift recovery bounce back. Even greater capacity after encountering such tragedy because most healing modalities recommend healing the brain after long-term emotional abuse (including journaling!); I had already practiced for years and will continue to practice now I am free. You can’t heal from heavy metal toxicity if you keep ingesting heavy metals; the same goes for toxic relationships. You cannot recover your brain if you continue to receive emotional abuse.
I have lived a life with these obstacles holding me back for quite a long time, and to put it quite mildly, I nearly drowned. In fact, in the past year-and-a-half in my recovery from being orphaned, there were incredibly dark times when I almost did not make it physically and mentally. The “I don’t feel like it.” whisper voice is still ever-present. But, because of my past, I don’t think I’ll lose the motivation to recognize and consciously challenge it. Otherwise, I’ll be on the road leading back to the swamp of darkness and untimely death.