“Placing the blame or judgement on someone else leaves you powerless to change your experience.
Taking responsibility for your beliefs and judgements gives you the power to change them.”
My friend and I were discussing “people” issues the other day. Specifically, issues around trust and intimacy. Belief systems created by childhoods full of negative reinforcement or lacking in love. Adoption really didn’t come into the conversation per say but of course, it’s always on the back burner as a given, that we adoptees have more issues and are to blame for most of the worlds problems.
I said, “Everyone has jagged edges.” The parts of self that C.G. Jung tells us are our shadow. It’s the person we would rather not be. Usually the shadow can be seen in the person in a family whom we judge the most, the mayor whose behaviour we condemn, the celebrity who cause us to shake our heads in disgust.
“Nah…I don’t have a so called “shadow” I’m real, I’m authentic.” she says a bit irritated.
I secretly smile because the ego is the protector and jumps in to denounce that part of her being.
Since we are both practicing Buddhists and the conversation came about because of an event related to that, we can speak openly, not always agreeing but honestly and openly about the hard subjects so I said…”Would you say your ego self is trying to protect the wounded part, the secret part, the shadow part?”
“Hmm…well maybe.” She says in reflection.
We were born whole, and yet most of us are living as partial human beings. We each have the capacity to be an important part of a larger whole. We are meant to discover our authentic nature….the state of being in which we are inspired by ourselves, turned on, lit up and excited about who we are.
There is only one thing that can rob us of that future, well maybe two. Ego and the shadow or the jagged edges.
If we can only understand this and recognize that the judgements, the beliefs we criticize in others, the constant jabbing we do and finger pointing is, in reality a startling and sometimes sobering realization that its actually our jagged edges. Everything that annoys us about another person, horrifies us or disgust us is actually in us. It’s ours, all ours.
With that wisdom in hand, we begin to see that the jagged edges are all that we try to hide, and things we don’t want people to find out about ourselves.
Jab, Jab, Jab, goes the finger. ” But, but you said…but you did…you are the one with the issues, not me.”
I can only shake my head, as sometimes….not often mind you…but sometimes, being adopted comes with a benefit of struggling to find ourselves, our true selves. The ingrained belief systems that we all have to dig deep to find. The endless pain and grief we wallow through to get to the other side means we know our shadow well. We are intimate with each and every little jagged edge.
Those jagged edges have held the thoughts, emotions and impulses that up until the point of reunion, the crash, the “coming out of the fog” have been too painful, too embarrassing or distasteful to accept
They have been repressed deep within the core of our being, sealed away in some part of our psyche. As an adoptee, we are born with jagged edges already prewired.
Most people are born with pure, buddha spirits knowing love and connection. Ours are filled with grief, loss, abandonment. Prewired from the uterine experience of not being wanted, we spend years unravelling the tangled wires of the limbic system. Somewhere deep inside we know our buddha self resides. We work endlessly throwing out belief after belief to get to that place of purity and peace.
To be judged, criticized for writing about, reading about, talking about these jagged edges is bullshit. Just plain ol’ bullshit. I’m tired of explaining, of trying to prove my goodness, my grace, my wholeness to people who can’t admit they have jagged edges themselves. I’m imperfect, still learning, but I’m whole and free to be authentic now.
Every part of my shadow now lies between the covers of Finding Heart Horse and The Wall of Secrets. Don’t tell me not to write, or to dig deeper.
I am bare, I am naked to the world
and yet, there is a peace, an authenticity I feel about my whole self now that was never there before.
There is vulnerability and yet ability to accept the judgement and there will be much, i’m sure.
I acknowledge each and every teeny tiny jagged edge.
They are a part of me but no longer define me.
I no longer have desire to point fingers or blame anyone because I know, if I do…I’m really pointing out parts of me that need work and I quickly identify those parts with grace and desire to change.
I am, in fact quite fond of “my shadow” now because it no longer controls me. It doesn’t bring shame or disgust.
My inner hunger to feel good became greater than my need to be liked or to be perceived as a “good little adoptee.” And as adoptees or not…we know that feeling well.
Being grateful to be “chosen”….to be given a home. To be “taken in”. Being grateful to be allowed to meet your biological mother.
Grateful. Grateful. Grateful. Don’t you hate, just hate that word? ‘
Imagine, being grateful that you were allowed to meet the mother that should have been your mother to begin with. An adoptee trait that I despise. One of those little jagged edges that took awhile to understand.
Beliefs and Bullshit seem to go together for only as long as you don’t get to know your shadow, your jagged edges.
Take back your power. Take responsibility for your beliefs and judgements. Change is possible.
No Bullshit! It works.