Anti-alcoholism comic book ad (Photo credit: solviturambulando)
What hole? Not the hole in your wallet, head or stomach. Not the hole in your jeans, sock, or shoe. The hole in you.
An amazing KBT therapist I have had the opportunity to listening to and study with shared something with my class. Something profound that she learned during her never-ending journey of the recovering alcoholic. She said,
” Eventually I accepted that fact that I have a hole in my heart and soul. I have to live with it because it is a hole, and it is a part of me. I can’t fill it with anything – I have tried.”
She continued to share with us the things she tried to fill this hole with. All of them destructive because she was unable to use these things with any kind of measured control. She allowed these things to take over in order to try to fill her longing, loss, sorrow, anger, need and whatever else the hole represents.
” It still hurts, but I have accepted it as a part of me.”
We all have holes. How they got there is not important, if you are now grown-up and an adult. Others may have hurt us, punished, neglected, manipulated, mutilated us for whatever reason. (Probably due to the pain of their own holes and needing to have someone to blame.) Instead it is time to be responsible for ourselves.
What do I mean? Well, an example. The young woman who has been verbally abused by her father and tried to please him her whole life – never receiving the loving words of appreciation and acceptance she longed to hear. She grew up and stayed close by, and he continued to verbally abuse her and then her children. The children moved away. And yet this woman stayed close, loving, serving, fixing taking care of (enabling) him, allowing her father opportunities to continue the verbal abuse. She didn’t understand, didn’t actually see that when she became an adult she received the freedom to get away from him. She couldn’t see the option so it didn’t exist. Today her father is dead. She now cries over the fact that he never apologised, he never took back the horrible words her buried her under her whole life – and now he is gone and she pines for his confession.
She should be able to feel her pain, and then find the joy in his absence! But he was such a big part of her life that she now fills the hole he left behind with the sorrow, pain and emptiness of never getting what she need from him. And sadly she will never get that closure, not from him. If she can take responsibility of having to get or take closure for herself she can end her torture. But untill she wants to take some responsibility for where she is now in her life, there will just be memories and demons to blame it on.
Addiction is selfish and manipulative. Co-dependents are selfish and manipulative. We dance a mean, painful dance together trying desperately to fill our individual hole with something (each other and stuff) instead of realising – well crap there seems to be a hole here.
A black hole? Yep, I am just going to let it be, if I leave it alone it won’t hurt me.
God grant me the serenity
to accept the things I cannot change;
courage to change the things I can;
and wisdom to know the difference.