And here you are...Living! Despite it all
I read this beautiful sentence yesterday, “ And a relationship will not be a relationship because I am missing or needing something or someone out of lack, But rather because my cup overflows…”
Yes, I know, this is something I wrote myself.
The funny thing is as I am reading this sentence over and over again, I find myself reciting that my cup overflows, but I am not living it.
In the last couple of weeks, I continuously found myself Feeling feelings of discomfort, searching for connection for longing and belonging…
And all of a sudden it hit me
“I am not practicing what I preach...”
Here I am writing all these stories about what I’ve learned, how I have evolved, But at the Same time I am drowning in my big sad ocean of tears.
"How did this happen...? I thought I figured this out already? What am I missing here?"
So, a week ago I spent a night with my parents, that night it was raining outside and I decided to start up a conversation. I asked both of my parents about my childhood.
As a child I was always first in line to please my mom and dad in every way possible. And In return they would always tell me "you are such a good girl" and this made me feel very good.
The crazy thing however, is that my sister was the total opposite! She never seemed to care about any compliments nor approval, she just did What she wanted, When she wanted.
I find this fascinating as we are only one year apart, growing up with the same parents, but our characters being remarkably different.
I contemplated on how this could be...
And it right then and there struck me, that based on my needs for approval my “personality” was born. Being “always nice" "the kind child", "the sweet child".
OR...Was this even my "Personality?"
Or just a tool to obtain the approval that I so desperately hungered for from everyone around me. Why was I so frantic for approval? Could it be that I missed something as a child…?
Studies show small children have three fundamental psychological needs. These needs are different from the physical demands of food, shelter, warmth, and sleep.
1. We need Connection; as children, we need to connect, connect with our parents, siblings, and teachers to feel that we belong, to feel that we are safe, to feel that we are loved.
2. We need to feel capable; We need our loved ones to believe that we are capable to do stuff on our own, to believe in us.
3. We need independence; We need to feel that we are safe to be who we are and to express ourselves freely as the child that we are.
Studies also show, during our childhood, our psychological needs are often failed to be met. We either do not experience the connection we need because our parents are either too busy working to bring food to the table, others do have the time, but simply don't know how to make a connection and some who shouldn't even be allowed within ten feet of a child because of mental or physical abuse.
Other than missing emotional connection we can also experience that we are incapable to do things on our own, in this case we fail to develop our confidence; or we are not allowed to be the individual that we are and are not able to build our independence.
What I came to learn is that I primarily failed to develop emotional connection.
During childhood my sister being a little bit difficult, required more attention than I. I did everything my parents asked. Did well in school, did what I was asked to do, I was considered an "easy child" so naturally I received less attention. Although harmless to my parent's awareness, it caused me to feel that I received less love. I felt that my parents did not love me as much and I felt that I did not belong.
Therefore up until recently, almost in every encounter with everyone who matters to me, I found myself overcompensating to feel NOW what I missed THEN.
Although I am now a full grown adult and I have achieved so much and have everything my heart can wish for, I sometimes still feel like I am overcompensating to feel certain emotional connections...
You see what we do is we lead our lives continuously feeling these feelings of lack.
However we so Often fail to recognize that this was something we needed when we were children.
Now, we are all grown up! We are Mature adults, we have achieved and done so much. We can love, we can take care of ourselves, we can be confident, and if we let go of our fears, we can be whoever we want to be .
We need to remind ourselves that we can let go of the urge to receive now what we did not receive then.
Because as an adult, believe it or not, we are free to start over...
And no matter what happens in our life, we will be okay!
You know why?
Because you are! Here you are, LIVING, despite it all.
Author: Roshni Jagroep