It is often said that words do not define us. In my personal realm, they do. I may have mentioned this a time or two. What I mean is that I require words to give to people to describe who I am and am not.
I hold onto words. I have a love-hate relationship with them. I love how eloquently they roll off your tongue when telling someone you love them. I love the punch they have when said in anger.
I am sure we can agree that words are powerful.
Ironically, I struggle to find words that I relate too. Ya know, fit the definition of. This was the case when in rehab and mental facilities when the counselors would say that I had abandonment issues. I never agreed. How could someone have abandonment issues when the abuser was there? He did not do me a favor and leave, no, he stayed.
One day, out of the blue, it dawned on me. It is rejection, for me, not abandonment. Being able to communicate that has changed my world and recently a good friend of mine did it for me with yet again, one word…
You all have read about my confession of being able to absorb the energy of others and it is the word territorial that describes why I am the way I am.
How’s that?? Allow me to dish it to ya…
All of my life I have used words such as possessive, protective, even jealous (which I am not by nature) to describe how I am with those closest to me.
Once I feel safe with someone, in my mind, they literally become mine. Like seriously.
Their well being at that point has been assigned to me to guard. If at any point I feel that they are in an uncomfortable situation, I swoop in and defend. I will go to any length to bring my friend or family the level of comfort they need.
I do not take these actions based on their command, I do so by sensing their energy. Pretty much their energy tells on them. At work, if anyone is rude or aggressive with any of the girls, I immediately chime in and make it known that none of that nonsense will take place. Not with me around anyway.
Having always been this way, I never thought to put a word to it. But when I thought about it, the words I did chose were all associated as negative describers and that part of me isn’t necessarily bad or negative. This only confirms one thing, I am not crazy. I do feel on a different spectrum/level than others.
The second I heard my friend use the term territorial in the same sentence as Candace, something clicked. A light flickered and everything seemed to come full circle at that moment. Here’s the circle…
” The things I am to discover about myself are not bad. I am not bad. I was just labeled that as a child growing up. Not only did I think I was because of my dad but also because no one’s parents would let them hang out with me. In my adult life, most of my friend’s boyfriends do not like it when their girlfriend hangs out with me (the insecure ones anyway).”Candace Lynne
Intimidating and snobby are two words people have used to describe me, more than I’d like to admit. Two of which, if I may say so myself, are words I’d rather not be associated with. Intimidating isn’t too harsh but snobby is something I have tried my whole life not to be. My dad is a snob. Yuck! When this has been said I didn’t have a rebuttal and now, I do!! I can see it now…
“I thought you were a snob”
“Ummm excuse me??? I am territorial” 😉
(Oh, my bad. I had a moment of role play there for a sec.)
Some people do not like using words to describe them because they feel as though it attaches a label. I cannot argue that labels are put on people, therefore, limiting their abilities but for me, they are necessary.
Along this road I am traveling, I discover something new about myself daily. In an effort to change the way I view myself it is vital that I do not consider things about my character as bad or wrong.
If you have ever suffered emotional abuse a common tendency is to belittle ourselves. This is the opinion of the abuser not necessarily the opinion we have of ourselves. It is this conditioning that requires us to take note of the way we talk to ourself, change it, and move forward. Implementing change takes action and although sometimes difficult, in the end, we reap the benefits.
It is difficult to change any habit and I am finding the kinder I am to myself, the easier the climb. We each have our own level of tolerance and should never look down upon someone for the choices they make along their journey. You either accept certain things or you don’t and you move on. Life is too short to be wasting time in situations with unresolved issues.
By no means has it been easy to get where I am, to be able to say this. Awkward moments staring in the mirror trying to spit out, “you deserve better than this”, took a strength I had to verbally ask for. This may seem small to some who may ” have had it worse” but for me, being kind to myself is the biggest thing I’ve done yet. Even quitting alcohol after 20+ years abuse seemed easier.
Brokenness can be mended. Not overnight and not without tears. I share this not to brag but simply to restore one person’s faith in themselves. I know if I can do it, you can too. But you have to want too… Want to remove the chaos, sit in silence, look in the mirror and hold yourself accountable for your role in all of it. Not as a source of blame but to find a true strength that will elevate you and carry you through.
Tomorrow will present its own set of obstacles but at least now I can approach them with myself on my side. Lightening the load is half the battle. Learning how to love yourself without shrinking wins the battle.