Creating Relief in Painful situations

I create my own reality. Especially the fucked up stuff.

When I first began saying that – I create my own reality – it was to cope. It was a lifeline. It was my mantra to get me to the other side.

I guess I only half believed it, then. It was what I used to move away from pain. I didn’t want to focus on the half which acknowledged that I created the pain.

I just wanted to use it to motivate me to recreate, which I’ve done a somewhat embarrassing, and somewhat courageous, amount of times in every arena of life.

Why? Am I running from myself, and the painful realities that I create? “Partly, yes.” was the obvious true answer. “Partly, no.” was the answer I had to explore further. What’s the gift of recreating? How does it serve me?

Every couple of months, I rearrange my living space. People come over and get disoriented when things aren’t in the same place. My ex told me I had a disease. He said I did that because I didn’t know how to be happy. I believed him. Sometimes I’d defend myself, but I couldn’t help the urge to recreate my space, and over time came to view this urge as he did:  a deep-seated inner restlessness.

But another truth is, I was shifting energy. I was moving things around when I had the feeling that I wanted to shift the energy of the space. When I needed more holding, I created hermetic cozy nooks. When I needed more expansion and clarity, I opened up spaces and simplified. It was incredible to me how many ways the same items flow together to create different vibes. I was moving things in a way that helped me feel whatever I was being called to feel more of.

I was healing me.

I was listening to my inner voice, and meeting my own needs. I was creating, and the kids know my habit as mommy’s evolving “art project.” They, on the other hand, love discovering what’s new.

Once I realized this, and came deeper into the practice of honoring my inner guidance instead of criticizing myself – only then – I saw the gifts of this habit.

I get to see the same things from new perspectives. I get to feel differently in the same space.

I have inspiration, beauty, and fun.

Recognizing these gifts allowed me to see that I’m not running, I’m just shifting. And I always want to shift when I’m called to in the direction I’m called to. That’s what freedom feels like to me.

I create my own interior design. I create my own reality.

I get it now. The painful times are not bad. They’re just like my redesign urge – a sign that something no longer felt optimal. And just like I viewed the design shifting as an art, as a healing, so too is the shifting when my emotional body tells me things don’t feel good.

I don’t have to change homes. I can just reorganize inside. I can reorganize to view the pain as the messenger. To receive the message gracefully. To shift internally, and externally, to meet the unmet emotional needs.

I started this year in devotion to feeling relief. Egregiously, I must have been feeling pain. Divorce is painful. But more painful was admitting the energetics I chose for myself for so many years, the life experience I had created. Just like the rearranging habit, at first I was sad and mad and shamed myself for it…and eventually, came to see the gift in it.

Honoring the gifts has allowed gratitude and validation for my choice to shift out of those energetics.

Finding relief took me 2 years after he moved out, and more pain than I’d prefer.

So, the next time I felt great pain – when my father filed a lawsuit for my home, and half a million in bogus punitive damages – I knew my goal was to give myself what I needed, and move out of the pain as fast as possible. My goal was to run to relief.

The pain was strong. At first I took it personally. I was a single mother, and his grandkids live in the home he was after. But this is someone that has embezzled from everyone he comes into contact with, from large corporations, to his brothers, to his in-laws, to his childhood friends, to his ex-wife. I was an easy target for him. I was naive. I trusted my father despite his clear history. I chose to play with a snake.

My mother was deeply triggered by this. Her warrior spirit pushed me to fight him. She set up meetings with the best attorneys, and offered to pay for them. She came up with schemes in which we could try to “teach him a lesson” or manipulate things. Sometimes, we shared a laugh over these schemes. Many times, I called her with tears of betrayal burning down my face. She felt guilt. She had signed off on the details of the real estate transactions, and had failed to protect me. She had failed to protect herself too.

She should have stopped playing with the snake the first time  she got bit. But she made excuses for the snake, had pity for him, and kept interacting. She lacked inner peace because of not showing up for herself in this relationship, even after divorce.

I remained aware of my inner energetics. Of my ability to create my own reality.

I took full responsibility for trusting the snake, and the woman who told me it was okay to play with the snake, even as she kept getting bit. Even if they are my parents. They cannot keep themselves safe from drama and pain, so how can they protect me from it?

They didn’t have the capacity to meet my emotional need to feel safe in relationship. And neither did my ex. Big aha moment there.

And big relief. I’m going to do my own choosing based on my experience from now on. I’m not going to disregard how I feel for anyone –  my parents, experts, or authority. I’m going to prioritize my internal harmony. In every choice. Every situation. Every relationship.

I keep myself safe. Exhale.

Fighting him in a bullshit financial bullying lawsuit for years, while hemorrhaging money to lawyers – that would keep me in a victimized, triggered place. From there, I would attract more of the same. Walking away, and not standing up to him at all, also felt victimized and like I wasn’t showing up for myself.

I remembered the stress of a legal process, the sleepless nights strategizing, the conversations with lawyers that kids shouldn’t hear but sometimes do, the way it took over my limited remaining bandwidth – away from my kids and away from my self care. I knew that was not my path to relief, even if I won.

It took me some time to find the right feeling approach. I teetered back and forth before finding my new homeostasis I selected my solution entire on how much relief it felt like. I was able to guide myself towards everything that felt like relief, and away from everything that didn’t. Talking to mom about it didn’t feel like relief, so I stopped. Talking about it in general didn’t feel like relief so I diminished that too. I chose the lawyer based on relief. Negotiated terms based on relief. And framed the whole thing for my kids based on relief. Negotiating an agreement felt like relief. Not having anything to do with him financially or legally anymore felt like relief.

I chose perspectives that felt like relief: “There are valuable life lessons here. Everything happens for a reason. I create my own reality.” 

I found ways to benefit from the situation – moving closer to the Ocean, a better school for the kids, a walking neighborhood, a neighbor to practice Italian with, a lawyer that turned into a good friend and wouldn’t let me pay him, a jacuzzi bathtub, a custom made bed…I could go on.  Now, my space feels more like what I wanted to feel, relieved.

By focusing on feeling relief, I was better able to recognize how I created that whole situation with my dad. And I”m not talking about the literal choices I made to be involved with him financially. I created that whole situation to be able to find relief.

I was pushing myself so hard to maintain that home. I mom-guilted over the idea of moving the kids after the divorce transition, and thought holding on to the same home was best for them. I forgot that a mom who is present, and not stressed, is what’s best for them. I may have never had the guts to move past that guilt and give myself the relief of not carrying the financial burden of our two income life on one income.

I had prayed and set sights on relief. The Universe shifted to match that vibration. My dad’s lawsuit was just what I needed to feel good about leaving that home, and to downsize and reduce my financial pressure and stress. It also felt good to gift him so much financial gain – I have peace of mind that I’ve treated him well and taken care of him financially in his old age. Throughout, I acted with love and integrity.

And this was the other deep lesson – acting with love and integrity. What stung me most about my father’s actions was that they felt lacking in love and integrity. Whenever we are really bothered by some quality in others, it’s a quality that our inner psyche is bothered by about us. I hadn’t been loving to myself. I hadn’t maintained integrity with myself in my choices that disregarded emotional input.

Further, my parents’ drama energetics are what I’m made of. Ugh. The only way for me to move through that karma is to keep everything I do with love and integrity. With myself first, and with all my relations. This awareness, and practice, has also led to a type of relief I hadn’t imagined. One in which your energetics are so on the up and up, that you feel unattached. Whatever is coming into my life now – people, situations, jobs – have got to be an energetic match for my good feeling space. And this makes me less afraid.

It’s relief to no longer play with a snake. It’s relief to know that I did that rearranging of my thoughts and responses and emotions to move from pain to deep relief. And this time, in months.

I feel so damn good. Money is flowing to me. Homes around the globe are opening to me. These past attachments seem so inconsequential to feeling this good.

I chose my internal harmony over everything.

It’s relief to know, I can do it again.

I create my reality.

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