25: Mixed Messages

“The mind secretes thoughts like the body secretes enzymes.” – Tara Brach

This is my dilemma, every idle thought talks to me about C: what I did too good people, how wrong and selfish my behavior or repeating other peoples’ ghost stories.

In response, I want to act to atone for my actions and pursue answers…or I get angry. I do this because to sit and wait for the thought to pass feels like an eternity in purgatory.

The thoughts become so powerful, so overwhelming it hurts to ignore them but it also hurts to act on them. Every rumination creating a cascade of new questions, ideas, options. Self-doubt and self-loathing waterboarding my own psyche.

That thinking is not the same as plunging deep, as Emerson says, “into the sublime seas.”

Ruminations are the shallowest of thoughts. There is nothing insightful found in blaming, anger, and resentment. They lead to nothing but bitterness and cynicism. Power and self-respect are not found there.

Listening to Tara Brach’s podcast, friends, and strangers at more than one recovery meeting, I recognize the problem is not simply my lies, infidelity, and C’s ghosting.

The real problem is how I value myself because of my lies, infidelity, anger and C’s ghosting. I’m far harsher on myself than anyone else can be. I betrayed people I love. My mind tells me that is unforgivable and I should run away. My mind tells me I don’t deserve to be loved. My mind tells me I need to “fix” what I did. My mind tells me that nothing I do will make it okay. My mind tells me what strangers think is more important than what I know. My mind tells me ghost stories.

And then I breathe and relax. When do I hear a quiet inner voice saying, “Those are lies too.”

And this is the mixed message: I know but I do not know.