Catharsis I: Laughter

Catharsis is the purification of emotions through art or any extreme change in emotion that results in renewal and restoration. Performing this type of emotional purification is essential for every empath. It helps with getting rid of any pent-up negative emotions in oneself. Beneficial forms of daily catharsis ideal for empaths include exercise of any kind, screaming into a pillow, crying, laughing, or self-expression through art of any form.

I’ve decided to try this emotional purification via laughter. Before learning about catharsis, I do know laughing through life is the best way to get through it. Even after some painful moments, I can look back and laugh at most of them. My kids are hilarious and they say and do the craziest and silliest things. So I would like to share my silly mom stories on a regular.

kids-winking

This Sunday morning, my daughter and I go out for breakfast at one our favorite spots. In her typical terrible 2 fashion she cuts up as soon as we get there. A course our waitress and all the patrons think she’s adorable while I’m secretly thinking in my head behind my huge grin and my nod of thank you is “this girl is a holy terror and you have no idea!” I’m sitting at our booth trying to enjoy my omelet while she feels the need to climb under the table to play with food on the floor, stand on the seat and stare through the opening and point at the people siting in the next booth, take off her shoes and throw them in the middle of the aisle so she can have an excuse to get up, dance and put on her one girl show. Let’s just say I’m about to lose my mind with the constant “mommy, mommy, mommy” while I’m trying to eat, so eventually she wears me down to giving in and I stop trying to get her to eat her food and I give her my phone so she can watch her favorite videos on YouTube.

After I hand her my phone, she calmly settles into the her seat, props her feet up and scrolls through the videos till she finds the one she wants to watch. I feel defeated but at least I can start eating again but now in peace. I look over at her and she looks up at me and puckers up her lips for me to kiss her so I lean in and giver her a kiss. My heart melts and my frustrations towards her fade and I continue to stare at her while she goes back to watching her videos. I guess she felt me still staring at her because then she looks up at me and does something that completely catches me off guard. This girl winks at me! I freeze, then we both bust out laughing.

Mirror, Mirror on the Wall

golden mirror

I had a very intriguing session yesterday with my therapist. While discussing my digestion of the recent discovery of my ex-husband being a narcissistic sociopath, we decided to dive deeper into my relationships with “me focused” people.

This deep dive project surfaced from me telling my therapist about some memories that arose when a lot of different events, including the past 4 years of my life with my ex-husband started to put a lot of scattered puzzle pieces of my life together. For example, one key puzzle piece was that my dad was abusive and based on the things my mom has told me about things he did to her while married he is definitely a narcissist and my granddad was more than likely a narcissistic sociopath based on the family stories I’ve heard about him; which are 10 times worse than what my dad was doing to my mom. So there’s definitely a generational curse going on on my dad side with this mental disease. One of the memories that arose was one of my granddad when I was in high school around the time when he was falling ill with lung cancer. My dad was in town and left me and my sister at my granddad’s for some quality time. I was at his apartment trying to heat up some food in his microwave, but he had an older microwave and I didn’t know how to work it. I had to ask him more than once how to use it because he was being short with his answers like he was annoyed with me. Maybe, this was my third time asking him how to set the minutes and before I could finish getting my ask out he pushed me hard out of the way, started yelling at me and calling me names. My therapist asked me do I remember what I did and I replied that during that time in my life whenever anyone would yell at me it would remind me of hearing my parents arguing and I would freeze and I would block everything out. So in that moment I froze, blocked him out and walked away.

Then I continued to tell my therapist that prior to my family moving to another state I went to stay with my granddad for a little bit when I was 4 while my mom was getting everything in place with her new job and the house. I don’t remember staying with him, but this is what I was told and based on one story my mom would tell. When she went to go get me from him after this extended stay, she passed this dirty little girl riding on a big wheel bike and she thinks “ahh she’s a really cute girl somebody should wash her up, do her hair and be out here watching her.” When she gets to my granddad’s apartment she asks for me and he replies, she’s outside riding her bike you probably passed her. My mom then immediately turns from him, goes and picks up that cute, dirty little girl she passed not knowing it was me and leaves without grabbing any of my things. I then relay to my therapist that I am concerned, now knowing what my granddad may have been, what I may have been exposed to while living with him during that period of time. My therapist tells me if the body has no response to the thought of him then maybe, just maybe I don’t have anything to worry about but as these memories arise in due time will tell.

So I’m assuming to pull my focus from feeling helpless in this situation, my therapist asked me to think of a friend that I had or have that wasn’t “me focused” and to be honest I had to really search through my memories to find a person that wasn’t. Majority of all the people in my life that I befriended or more so befriended me were
“me focused”. A lot of friends that had befriended me was for their sole purpose only. For example, I’m very smart and in high school and college a lot of people would befriend me to help them with their assignments or get notes for class or to try to cheat off of. Once they realized that I wasn’t going to allow them to cheat off of me or I was going to make them put in work when we had group assignments those people would eventually fall to the waste side. But a course the narcissists, the tricksters, the manipulators knew just how to pull on the heart strings or spin their web to make me believe they were really my friend while they used me.

After thinking for a minute or two, I finally thought of a person that wasn’t anything like any of these “me focused” friends. My therapist then asked me to list what was different about this person and the main things that came to mind was this person was mellow, focused on their children and wasn’t visually self-conscious about their image. Then my therapist stated “so you said this person was mellow like their vibrations were low, mellow toned”, then asked me how did this make me feel? I replied it made me feel uncomfortable and like in typical therapist fashion she asked “why” and I replied, because I’m not used to mellow, I’m use to people who are high wired, high vibration and at the same time we both say “chaotic”. Then another puzzle piece fell into place, maybe I’m gravitating towards people who are “me focused”, high vibratory because that’s familiar. I grew up in a household that was “me focused” and chaotic. My entire life has been nothing but chaos, whenever there is a moment of peace or mellowness I feel uncomfortable and become anxious. That’s why I’ve always been a busy body, constantly active which leads to being burnt out and stressed out on the regular.  But also kept me from having to think or wallow in the pain that was my life.

I do want to know what’s “wrong”with me and what I need to do to fix the deep dark parts of me to make myself whole, especially after going through a traumatic marriage and separation. At first when I learned that I’m partly to blame for some of these hardwired poor decisions it saddened me and made me think that I’m way more screwed up than I originally thought. No wonder I attract crap in my life. But after a day of processing, I became inspired and felt better knowing this information.

So Mirror, Mirror on the Wall …. no I’m not to blame for what is attracted to me and no I’m not to blame for what I’m attracted to, but I am responsible for my attractions after I’m made aware to these factors that have made me hardwired to this dysfunction. Time to choose wisely. Time to change the woman in the mirror!

Take an Emotional Load Off With a Social Media Diet

socail media

I never understood why some people would make such a big deal out of taking time off from social media or have to declare on Facebook that they needed a break from it then disappear from it for a while. I had one friend who canceled her Facebook and one day I eventually got her to return my text and I asked her why she did it. She told me she couldn’t take being on Facebook anymore, because seeing everybody’s business made her feel like her life was being judged. I didn’t understand her decision at first and I thought her decision was selfish, because that’s how I stayed in touch with her since we were both very busy with our family and kids and we didn’t get to see each other much.

Well, I am now in that place that I guess she was in, but for a totally different reason. I had to go on a “social media diet” for a very silly reason last week. I received a text that I hit 75% of my data usage and I didn’t want to go over. Well, there’s more to it than just that so let me start from the actual  beginning. I recently started watching my spending habits and I have to say I never paid attention to how much time I spent on my phone when I was bored; specifically at work, which contributed to majority of my data overage charges. This habit made me increase my plan a few months back, which increased my bill significantly. After re-evaluating my bills, I realized I couldn’t afford that plan any longer and reduced my plan back to where it was originally and now I needed to watch my data usage. Now that I hit my 75% usage mark this month, I’ve shut off my cellular data for all but 2 apps and have gone on this social media diet. Man, have I noticed a change in my weight! A course, I don’t mean my body weight but my emotional weight. I don’t feel like I have the same emotional stress I had when I was constantly on Facebook or Instagram looking at everyone else’s life via their posts and subconsciously comparing them to my life. Subconsciously taking in all this insignificant info from people I normally don’t see and to be honest don’t care to see in my everyday life and it was impacting my day-to-day measurement of my of myself in my own life. Spending less time on social media gave me more time to enjoy in the moment memories without rushing to my phone to capture a video or picture to post and share. It felt weird at first not rushing to take a picture but being able to really enjoy the moment activities happening felt so ancient and I’m glad I’m bringing it back. Seeing those happy couple posts were specifically detrimental to my emotional weight gain because I’m so jaded to relationships and not open to having that type of human closeness right now. In addition, seeing everyone’s happy friendships posts about my best friend this and my best friend that also affects me because once again I don’t have that in my life. A course there are multiple reasons why I don’t (I will explore that deeper in another post at another time) and it makes me question my life on why I don’t. In a non-social media world, I wouldn’t have to constantly have these questions, because I wouldn’t be bombarded with the constant comparison to someone else’s life in those categories.

This brings up another matter that I hear a lot about but never truly understood what it meant. Faking it on Facebook, Doing it for the Gram. Well, I would always see posts by a lot drama orientated people calling out other people on Facebook for being. Basically making it seem like they’re living this great life on Facebook but in reality they are not. Well, I got a crash course in this one day while talking to someone close to me one. I have a Facebook friend and they are always posting pictures, doing live streams, and posting great and wonderful things about their relationship. To be honest, it would make anyone envious to see all the posts of gifts, trips and parties they would attend together. The “love” that was presented seemed legit and magical. Well, my bubble was busted one day while talking to a close friend and they spilled all the beans about this couple. They fight constantly, they don’t get along and the one person is very controlling of the other. Man, you can definitely say that the grass isn’t greener on their side of the fence. All this time I’m seeing their posts on Facebook wishing I could find what they have one day and now I’m running around my house hoping I can catch and take all those wishes back because this is a perfect example of being careful of what you wish for!

So I say all of this to make a point, so let’s get to it. The Internet hasn’t always been here, Facebook and Instagram definitely has not and I do have to say the world was a simpler place when everybody didn’t know everybody’s business. At least during that time we had the celebrities and movie stars to look up to and admire but now everybody is a celebrity and everybody’s crap is getting stuffed down our throats via the internet. So just like when our bodies get a little overweight and boggled down from overeating too much junk food and over drinking too much soda, so can our minds with over indulging in too much social media. Just like we have to detox, begin to eat right and exercise to start losing that excess weight to start feeling better and get our bodies back on track to being healthy. We also need to do the same for our minds. Detoxify your mind from the poor images, the violent videos, the over sexual posts, the fake news, posts by fake friends you would never talk to if you ever saw them on the street, and dumb down stories that are trending for no good reason.