FATHERLESS

Fatherless

 

I would like to recommend a book today, by my friend, Phil Barber. I have only known Phil a few months, but we have been sharing quite a journey together on our weekly sessions of something called ‘Solo Autobiographical Theatre.’ You can‘t call it a drama class alone, as it is much more than that as you may guess from the autobiographical bit in the title. I wanted to do something that would get me out of my comfort zone and this was it and it has proven to be more than I could realise and in it, I am pretty fearless with the hope and desire this will spread into other areas of my life.

Together with 2 or 3 others we get together and pull strands from our own lives and find a way to express the story, face the sadness and some of the sweeter memories, but also tune into the wider story and break down some of those false beliefs and emotions that keep us stuck in the story. It really is an incredible gift and I am embracing it all and finding out things about myself I didn’t know I could do and becoming aware of emotions and experiences I didn’t know about. I find I can improvise a piece so quickly because with my spiritual journey in mind, I decide to focus on the emotion of a memory rather than the detail of that memory and from the feeling something grows. I also get to experience and watch others courageously opening themselves, unveiling their raw and vulnerable spots, as well as innate creativity.

But the other gift is that the four people I do it with sit without judgement and allow and encourage me to find the rawness of the emotion I feel and I so I feel uninhibited ( mostly), even with anger – an emotion I have found difficult to show publically or in the past admit I even had. There feels a supportive love present. In our different ways, we are seeking something and facing fears and challenging each other to be truthful and adventurous. Sometimes it is incredibly intense and yet very beautiful to see each other’s vulnerabilities and unlike therapy it feels less staged.

I know that sounds weird and there have been times when I have had therapy and it has helped me, but there have been many times when I felt a therapist was trying to control what I was feeling – so as “not to re-traumatise” me. If you have read some of my other blogs you will know that I understand and experience that it is the suppression of our emotions that has damaged us/me and to me that kind of therapy, just falls into society’s fear of emotional overwhelm and logically, if we look around at the problems in the world it is our denial of our true emotions that allows us to live so much of life in facade and untruths.

This autobiographical theatre is allowing me to experience myself in a new way and it has stirred up memories that are painful, but need to be felt, as well as moments of childhood that are sensory, that are good. So, in a short time, we all may have got to know more about each other, than we may have with other friends we have known for years. I guess when you are not sitting there over coffee having a chat over mundane or everyday things, you skip some facade and that is refreshing.

During the process, there have been some emotions in Phil that I related to a lot and so when he said he had written a memoir of his childhood, which was a journey of his life in and out of various children’s home and foster care I wanted to read more. From my experience, I have read more bad autobiographies/memoirs than good ones. Phil’s memoir is a very, very good one. He said it took him five hard years to write and I can see why as much of it is heart-breaking and sad and a poor reflection on how children are treated by their own family, but also by the systems in place which are meant to keep them safe from harm. It must have been a very emotional journey to write -and there is the gift.

In his introduction, Phil says he wrote it because “in fathoming more deeply my own journey it would help my children fathom theirs… and to speak to the orphan in us all.” The book is a gift of love to himself, which when you read the story, will see why that is so important; a gift of love to his children and to any of us that connect in with the feelings his childhood created and which so many of us relate to.

It is very well-written, but mostly frank, honest, deeply touching, but very self-effacing, making it all the more easy to read and connect with. I want to say a very personal thank you. I could not put this book down and by the end of it was in tears as I connected with many of the emotions of not feeling good enough, loneliness, shame and grief of my own childhood. So yes, it touched the “orphan” in me.

This orphan feeling I feel, runs deep in all of us. It initially may be a feeling we experience as coming from our own poor parenting, but I also feel it from our disconnection with our true parent – the one I am now trying to discover – and to discover that true parent, I know I have to grieve all the bad stuff that happened. I get angry at God, at times, because I don’t want to feel all of that, and I just want Him to hug it all away, but I have to bow to a greater wisdom that knows that my soul will expand once I have off loaded all the crappy stuff – to make room for the good. Makes sense hey? You can’t fill a jug with clean, fresh water if it is full of mucky old brown sludge.

But I digress! Please read this wonderful memoir. It will help you emotionally, if that is what you want, or it will just be a beautiful read. As the title of my blog, Phil’s book is called “Fatherless,” and I have put a link below. I can’t recommend it enough and I feel blessed to have such a friend.

And Phil – you truly have come a long, remarkable way. Well done and thank you so much.

With love,

Maxine

Popping the Cork..

pop the cork

It has been a few weeks since I wrote. I have felt uninspired to write or pursue any other passions, like painting, dancing or the kayaking I have longed to try. I have been so flat and it happened out of the blue. Even writing today feels like I am pulling a heavy stone along with the keyboard: a dense weight is in my system that I didn’t understand until a few days ago. If you follow my posts you will know that Robby and I have a personal spiritual journey: soul journey and we feel we have a found a teacher who really understands God’s truth: Divine Truth. There is a ton of free talks and other resources on their website ( see the links page) and I have been listening to FAQs on the human soul. These talks contain incredible knowledge and I suddenly am getting an understanding of why I feel some things, but hardly anything of the deep causal emotions in me. These are the emotions that create change in our soul when we feel them and release them: when released they open a window for us to receive Gods love if we desire to. These are the ones I have really found hard to access. I understand many of them on an intellectual level. I can recall certain events in my childhood that created them. But feeling them? NO! And getting frustrated or judgmental about not feeling them only blocks the flow further.

We can often believe we have the desire to feel things, but if we did, it would just happen. The truth is I must not have the desire or will to feel these emotions. If I did, I would feel them. This is just fact. The fact is I am terrified to feel these strong emotions, to be overwhelmed. I am terrified of my anger and afraid of the level of my fear and in denial about how deep my grief may go…. and there is not just one causal to clear. It is the same for many of us. From our birth we are blocked from expressing our soul, from expressing full stop. We learn very quickly that to express our emotions can lead to punishment, being ridiculed or humiliated. Our parents do it because it was done to them and so forth. Without judgement, observing an everyday event, I noticed a young mother on the bus with her baby last week. Every time it wimpered the dummy was put in her child’s mouth: it was silenced. I also felt how self conscious she felt if the baby made a noise, as though all eyes were on her and at times many were. I see it in the street too, a toddler yells, people stare and whisper, judging the mothers ability to keep her child quiet. We don’t like the noise, but we are terrified of the emotion. This shutting down of our children is acceptable and is even considered good discipline by the parents in our soceity. Despite outward changes in family life I observe the old belief that children should be seen and not heard running through family life, education and soceity.

In some families this becomes more extreme, where the parents lives dominant and the child is made to feel unloved, unseen and unheard. In mine, there was so much drama going on around the adults in the house, we all felt secondary and fairly invisible and unimportant. It may not have been deliberate but it just was: a sad and painful was. I quickly learned to silence myself. I created a cocoon to protect myself from anger and abuse. Of course it was an imaginary bolt hole. I still experienced the violence and chaos of my youth and sucked in all the emotions and much of myself to please my mother and the other adults around me. As a young adult I continued with this habit and now am an expert at sucking it in, maintaining “control” and avoiding those deep pains. But it has become exhausting. I am tired of the weight I feel in my body, on my shoulders, in my neck and hips. I am drained from holding in my emotions: stuffed full with pain with little room for  joy or love or my passions. It hurts. It hurts bad.

Jesus explains we need huge amounts of humility, desire and will to feel our emotions, especially if we have suppressed them all our life. Two weeks ago my guides gave me a cartoon picture in my third eye. It was me with a narrow topped bottle stuffing in what looked like enough cloth to make a hot air balloon. I was stuffing away trying to keep this “balloon” from escaping. So when I have believed I haven’t had enough will to feel my emotions, that I need to build up those muscles of my will I was shown I have enough will, but I need to change where I am using it: from an unloving ( to myself) suppression and resistance to my emotions into a more loving and freeing feeling of my emotions. I need to use my will to set myself free. I have wasted so much energy resisting and rebelling against my true feelings and nature: it makes no sense. In fact, on reflection I know this holding on to my emotions made me ill in the past.

Well it makes no sense any longer for me. I have listened to how my soul works and I get it all intellectually, but these last two weeks some of it has been hitting my soul; suppression, resistance, presence, dominance. The talk on suppression really hit me and I felt how pointless my suppression was, I felt how tired I had made myself and now I pray and will myself to change this. I am still terrified and unsure of myself in this process, but I know what I have heard is truth. I know God wants this for me and I want this for me and I want to want it more. I do not wish to continue how I lived in the past and present: imprisoned in fear, trapped and caught up in addictions to stop feeling the fear. I know my story: we all have one. Much has happened to us, but it is not permanent. We can change this, we can change ourselves and the world we live in. We can do it the long way: still rebelliously independent from God or we can do the short way with God’s love to help us. The short way may take 20 years, but its better than another 47 years like this or another 1000 years doing it on my own.

I know now that I lost my passions a few weeks ago when I suppressed another emotion. When I shut down one emotion (a painful one) in my soul I helped shut down the rest. So tonight I had to use my will to write: I had to feel how it felt when I tried to write. In the use of my will and my feeling something shifted a couple of paragraphs in as I felt the truth in my soul of what I am learning and experiencing in trying to follow The Way of God’s Love. I felt the passion for that truth and I felt my love of writing, of words, of language, of self expression. This weekend I may paint. Its been too long since I played with the colour palette and pulled out all my boxes of “Stuff”: bits of fabric, paints, glitter, threads, wool, fur, and so on.

Opening up to our passions is one way to feel again. As we allow a feeling, we allow more. God created us as emotional beings: an expression of some of his qualities. This world is emotional. Look at the incredible detail and beauty of nature, of life and our response to it. Who doesn’t sigh at a beautiful view? Who doesn’t feel it stirring something in their soul? In those moments, we feel awe, wonder, love, gratitude, and maybe even a sense of knowing our Parent.

I now know I must do what I can to feel, anything and everything; watching out for my automatic shut down. I do not yet comprehend what it is to really feel. I do not yet comprehend what it is to really love and be loved. My soul knows a little truth, a little love, but I have kept it crammed mostly full of pain. I am now choosing to shift my will to relieve myself of this pain, to learn to experience joy. For now, I am a strange concoction of resistance and fear sitting alongside determination and occasionally love. All I can say is thank God it is God helping me. I am a tough nut to crack so bringing in the big guns really is the only way.

I apologise for the lack of flow in my writing, but at least I wrote because I wanted to. On a final note I want to share a post I saw that inspired me to write tonight. A post that demonstrates the love, imagination and playfulness of our Creator and Parent, but also reminded me I can play too, that I am part of that loving creation. I saw the flowers, I laughed, I felt, I got to see a fragment of God’s love in a photo. Take a peek at these amazing images: what I am calling “The heART of God’s Love.”

http://pulptastic.com/16-flowers-that-look-like-something-else/

With love

Maxine

WHAT IF….

Image

WHAT IF…..

Our concept of family was wrong….

What if…
We do not own our children, they do not belong to us…
What if….
They are not even OUR children,but we are God’s children,
All of us brothers and sisters.
What if..
Parents are just the physical vehicle for a soul to incarnate,
created by their true parent: Mother/Father God.
What if…
We are NOT the controllers or security guards of our children,
but instead just temporary teachers and guides..
What if…
We are not meant to tell our children WHAT to do,
but are meant to just let them experience as much as they choose,
and just teach them the consequences.
What if…
There is never a reason to punish or judge a child, only to love them through all their mistakes.
What if …
We do not deserve respect just because we are the adult,
but rather earn it by demonstrating loving behaviour in this world.
What if…
We do not need to be right all the time,
but are meant to teach the children we are in fact imperfect, wounded
and God is the perfect parent, never withdrawing love.
What if,
There are not just a few people – “family” – who we are meant to love
more than others.
What if…
We are meant to love ALL our brothers and sisters, all over the world, equally.
What if..
The main purpose of being a “parent” is to help a new soul discover who they truly are, to tell them about our true ever-loving parent.
What if…
We have been doing it wrong all this time and there is another way…

Look at the world around you,
Look at your own family,
Look at what caused the pain in you…

Something logically, says we may have got it wrong…
Something, logically says, there is another way…..

Maxine Bell
( Inspired by my journey in getting to know God and the parent/children talks on divinetruth faq )