A caterpillar spins its cocoon without conscious thought of why or when or how. Nature propels its spinning ways until, possibly out of sheer exhaustion, it falls asleep to dream about flying free of the cloying nature of its weave. When the time is right, its metamorphosis from one state to another is complete and a butterfly is born.
We are not the caterpillar, being transformed by forces of nature beyond our control. We are human beings, doing the things that put us in control, or out of control as the case may be, of our transformation. Often, laden with our self-limiting beliefs, we resist change like a cat resists taking a bath. We claw and spit our way into reverse action, spinning protective webs of the stories we tell ourselves about ourselves, in our desperate attempt to hold ourselves in place and ward off change. James Belasco and Ralph Stayer wrote in their 1994 best-selling book on leadership, Flight of the Buffalo, “Change is hard because people overestimate the value of what they have—and underestimate the value of what they may gain by giving that up.”
There is no truth in his lies. No light in his darkness.
When I was involved with the sociopath, I couldn’t see what I would gain by leaving him. I had a litany of excuses as to why I couldn’t leave and I defended my right to stand by my man as I vehemently rationalized my right to stay. I couldn’t look at possibilities of leaving him because I didn’t see that there was anything I would gain by giving him up.
Released from that relationship, it was a case of ‘grow or die’. While with him, I was the living, breathing, walking dead. I didn’t resist change so much as give up on the possibility of change ever happening in my life because I could not see that I could have a life beyond the realm of my existence with ‘him’. I could not see the end of the story without him in it. I had completely submerged my identity into his. Tied myself to him within the sticky cocoon of his lies and my own self-limiting beliefs that said, “I am no one without him.” “He is all that I deserve.” “It’s all my fault.” “He’s right. I’m stupid.”
I look back on the woman I was and wonder, “Who was she?” While I also wonder, “What on earth was she smoking?” I know that woman was me. I love her for the abused and battered woman she was. She was me, once upon a time. She is not me today. In that moment of release when the police walked in and arrested him, I knew I had to take a leap. The choice of staying with him was gone. Was I going to grow or die under the weight of blame and shame and sorrow and guilt that threatened to bury me alive? It was up to me.
My choice is to grow and live free of his abuse.
I chose to grow and live. Making the choice wasn’t a slow process. It was a moment in time when the police took him away and left me alone with the devastation of my life. In that moment of crisis I took an evolutionary leap into the void. I didn’t know where I was going. I didn’t know what I was going to do. But I knew I wanted to live. The rest was simple. BE committed to DO what it takes to HAVE what I want. To be free of the past, I knew I had to rethink my thinking. Brush up on my existence. Retool my perceptions and reclaim my human experience.
That is the way of change, of evolution, of revolution. It isn’t a linear line moving predictably forward. It’s a circling spiral rising up within us. Sometimes, we slip back, or halt along the way as we catch our breath and regain our senses. Sometimes, we soar upwards, ascending through earthly matter outwards into the vastness of the universe, catching momentary glimpses of the greater truth that exists beyond our consciousness, out there in the universe amongst the glittering stars of our existence. In those moments we know the truth: We are creations of wonder. Divine reflections of the miracle of life. Children of God, of Buddha, Baha’ula, Allah. Whatever you call it, we are divine beings of spirits rising.
While it isn’t a painfree process, healing from these relationships is a joyous journey away from darkness into light. It’s like writing. Every morning I face my screen and wonder, what will I write? The screen before me is blank and often my mind feels almost as blank! I tell myself I don’t want to write. I think about cleaning the toilet, taking the garbage out, anything to avoid that which I must do. Write. As I sit in front of the computer I have to let go of my fear of writing and fall into my joy of creating words that have meaning. I have to let go of my resistance to being part of a change that creates words that have meaning for me and might or might not have meaning for eyes I cannot see, somewhere out there in the delicate web of the Internet. I close my eyes, take a breath and leap. In that moment of suspension, I trust the process of creation and trust the creative process to appear.
That’s life. Living in the moment, suspended between what was and what could be, existing in the now of creation, spinning dreams only we can weave. When I write, some days, my words flow. Some days they appear in sluggish protestation of the time of day, my tired state of mind or simply my resistance to creating value in my own life.
Be. Do. Have. And Give Back.
In my BE. DO. HAVE. frame of mind, I accept that change is a necessary part of living and I create the change I’m living. There is only one way to transform a blank screen into the written word and that is to let my thoughts flow out through my typing fingers. There is only one way to transform the pain of a realtionship with a sociopath into the life of your dreams. End the craziness. Stop his lies from holding you back from claiming your beautiful life today. Claim your right to be free of the past. Step into the moment unfettered by the sticky cocoon of his devious way of being and make your truth your reality today. Make it real and make it happen and love yourself with everything you’ve got. You’re worth it.