Uncovering the Authentic Self – Week 1
One of my paths to self-actualization according to my astrological reading is to develop my communications skills both in written and verbal mediums. I came across a DailyOm course on “Uncovering the Authentic Self” that asks a bunch of questions weekly to help you look back and see trends and various roadblocks in your past that will help you clear the road for the future. I intend to review these questions and do my best to engagingly introspect. Feel free to join me!
What is standing in your way right now?
Over time I’ve realized that I am the only one standing in my way and that is usually a huge hurdle to overcome. I have spent a great deal of time, energy and money to determine who I am and it seems that is a never ending topic. I seem to fight against my own inner-knowing and brush it off as too easy or over simplified. The truth is, if I would just take myself seriously I would have a much easier time.
However, as I do look back over my history and compare it to my astrological chart and what they “predicted” I still think life would have taken a different course than my intuition would have allowed. For example, I knew I had to be a mom. I didn’t really want to in the beginning, but something said that it had to happen for me. I thought I would only have one, and that would have shaped me very differently than having three did. I unconsciously ended up having to dedicate myself to my children and my family (as my 4th house and half my planet placements dictated) rather than dedicating myself to my career (as my south node was trying to move me away from.)
Now that I know what my chart says my growth points are and what I can expect from the 2nd half of my life I can navigate more consciously and avoid those things that I know are not congruent with my true self. However, psychology still plays a big part in things. As I was reading today in a horoscope analysis I purchased on AstroDienst, my struggle with both myself and my chosen partner in life is my desire to work out my “daddy issues”. The absence of my father in my childhood now leads me to desire a surrogate and it really resonated with me that my desire to find a new mate stems from my desire for someone else to give me meaning and purpose and be that ideal father-figure that I can admire. Crap! I need to get really comfortable with taking care of myself and depending on my own resources to find security and meaning before I can successfully find a new life partner.
What would happen if you could overcome the obstacle?
I have worked on my daddy issues. Around the time my 2nd son was born it started becoming very clear I could no longer release my dad from the responsibility of his absence in my childhood. Yes, my mom was the dominant figure in my life but he chose to not participate. It took me a long time to work through forgiving him for not protecting me from my mother’s emotional abuse (she is a solid Scorpio) and even longer to forgive him for not actually being a father on any level other than financial provisions (he is a star Capricorn). However, I still admired him to some degree until I had an all-out war with my mother and chose to stop talking to her for a couple years. Even though he knew how crazy she has always been, even though she was wrong on so many levels, my father still stood there and said that I was basically a disappointment as an adult. He said if I had only been disciplined more as a child, maybe I would have turned out better. That was the moment any and all illusions of my father fell away and I saw him clearly. I saw him as a weak and selfish man who deserved my mother and was happiest when he was miserable. He felt superior in her insanity and my rocking that world and trying to better myself, or her, was unacceptable. He would never see me, the same as my mother would never really see me – only the fantasy of what they wanted me to be.
It never occurred to me that I needed to let go of my ideal for a man. I do realize that no man is perfect and no relationship will ever be roses and rainbows all the time. However, as I have decided to let go of my 1st marriage because he cannot see me, just like my parents can’t see me, I do need to be real about what I can expect if I marry again. If I could really understand my desire to idealize the perfect man as everything my father and my soon to be ex-husband represent are not, then I would be able to set the expectation a little more realistically. Honestly, that is my biggest deterrent for dating and why I’ve delayed filing for divorce. I know there is baggage and a great deal of compromise in finding someone to spend your life with after 40. I don’t believe in fairy tales or perfection anymore but there is still a strong disappointment to me when people fall short. I know everyone will fall short of my ideals and I don’t know how to live with the discord. I don’t want to accept something mediocre because perfection doesn’t exist and yet if I don’t will be alone?
Are obstacles really just fears holding you back?
Um, yes, obviously! But let’s review the facts. I have many friends I really can’t spend that much time around, but I hold onto the friendship anyway. I see their “quirks” and their issues clearly and I have learned to accept that it is not my place to try to fix them or hold them to any kind of standard. Some I truly respect and value, others are just fun to do stuff with. However, I have to limit how much time we’re together. A few I can travel with, but most I can’t be with for more than a few hours at a time. I’m finding that true with my kids as well. As they grow into adulthood, I find them difficult to be around all the time. I think it is the energy that they exude. Strong energies really tire me out and I need a lot of downtime to find my own energy again. My mother forced me to learn that when someone around me has a stronger energy, I needed to back up and sit quietly. I find it hard to show myself, my opinions, and my desires when I’m around someone who is stronger energetically than I am. If they are weaker, I can stand up more but I also have an aversion to people I find really weak. If I can dominate someone, I feel guilty doing so therefore I will hide my strength to protect them. So, it would seem there is a really small margin that I can operate as myself within.
I think my take-away today is that I need to learn how to hold my energy steady regardless of who I am around. Perhaps dating is a great way to practice that since the majority of dates will “go away” and I don’t have to see them or spend time around them again. I have realized that my not engaging in conflict has not been healthy for me or those around me. They cannot ever really know me if I never tell them what upsets me. I have a fiery nature that I need to allow to be unleashed. When people realize that they irritate other people, they have a choice to make changes. If they choose to continue to irritate people, then they will suffer the consequences of not having those people around – but it is still a choice and I am an adult now. I am not a child who needs to make everyone around me feel comfortable. Perhaps as I spend more time around people and practice using my energy to make room for myself, more people will be less difficult for me to be around.