Familiar feelings die hard. And I only realized how much fear and hope had settled into my system when I was about to return to a familiar setting.
My mother is a nasty piece of work – she suffers from a Narcissistic Personality Disorder and it is has been very damaging having had her in my life. I thought I was over her. And cool with the situation. But then, the fear hit me when I was supposed to see her again.
I hadn’t seen her for about 3 years. At the funeral of my brother I observed her from a distance. I felt safe there as it was clear how I could avoid her. I knew where to sit, where to hide and how to keep a safe distance.
This time I was visiting her in her own home. My father was seriously ill and I had decided to go over and see him. Which inevitable meant, I had to see her. And those familiar feeling popped up again.
Fear and hope, they only die very slowly.
Fear for rejection, hope for acceptance. Fear for a put-down, hope for a compliment (maybe this time she will notice). Hope she hears me, fear she will twist my words again. Hope for a sliver of love, fear for being hated.
After all those years, the old and hard-wired system popped up.
When I realized the week before the visit that the churning in my stomach and the tightness in my chest were all due to fear – the feeling, I managed to move out of the emotions, back into my head where I gave myself a (loving) lecture.
A lecture about how it didn’t make sense to have hope. How I had given up hope after decades of disappointments, how I knew that I would never get what I really wanted (my mother’s love) and how I had made peace with it.
My thought process saved me and brought me to the here and now. Letting go of the old pattern of hope and fear my needs wouldn’t be met, which is a painful experience.
I was able to be with her in the same space without an emotional attachment, keeping the distance and observing her games and bitchiness.
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