I think people have a lot of make-up sex because they realize what they were fighting about in the first place was a misunderstanding. We have a tendency to project our past on the present and push for an encore of past events. We also have a tendency to misread signs and interpret them in the way we want to see them (which isn’t always in the best of lights). And when we get triggered we don’t necessarily think before we act.
Sometimes when something hurts us we react. We scream. We cry. We lash out in anger. We retract. We play the clown, pretending nothing can touch us.
Personally I’ve always favored retracting. Then last year someone said something which really hurt me. It didn’t help I had PMS either. I cried all the way on my flight from Copenhagen to Cape Town pretty much, until I somehow sedated myself with painkillers and fell asleep. And if you know me you also know I don’t cry very often and if I do it’s usually moist eyes. I’m not very good at the crying part, but having PMS I couldn’t put a lid on my feelings. Couldn’t tell them to behave. And it was actually quite liberating.
You have to understand, this was not something said out of malice, but it was something which I felt very strongly about. The person means a lot to me and basically told me what matters a lot to me matters fuck all to them, simply because they wanted me to care less about it. Of course, I didn’t care less about it though, it just hurt me they didn’t care.
I made a decision then. I made a decision I had to talk to them. I understood this wasn’t said out of malice. I also understood that unless I made them realize what it meant to me and that they mattered to me, our relationship would deteriorate because I would withdraw more and more, thinking there’d be no point in sharing anything that mattered to me. As we’ve always been very different, I’ve applied this tactic many times in the past. The more they’ve voiced their negative feelings about how I live my life, the more I’ve withdrawn from them.
So once I felt I was calm and could speak from my heart, I did so. And I was very happy about it because for the first time I think they understood how I feel when they say certain things. And seeing them try to change has warmed my heart.
In this instance, it’s a relationship I’ve worked on for years. A relationship where sometimes I’ve felt I’ve had the courage to voice my thoughts and other times I haven’t, because I’ve been too scared I’d get hurt. At times I’ve also responded with anger, withdrawal and complete ignorance. Last year I’d reached a point where I knew if I kept acting a certain way, I’d reap the same results. I’d also healed more emotionally and was therefore willing to open up more.
This week something else hurt me. And I could and still can feel the urge to move away from it. The urge to get angry about it. The sense of hopelessness as I don’t know an exact way of fixing it. Whilst I believe speaking from the heart is the best remedy in most instances it doesn’t guarantee the other person will listen. In the other example it was two people who have tried for years to improve a relationship. That’s very different from dealing with people who might have no interest in improving their relationship with you. And it can be really, really scary if you know something needs to improve or it will affect a lot of other things.
Right now I feel I could use both a stiff drink and a hug (mainly a hug), but what I choose this year is unconditional love. To act from that space. It’s not always feasible, which is why I shouldn’t act at times. It is possible to constantly bring yourself back to a place of unconditional love though. It’s possible to acknowledge whatever feelings of discomfort you may have and rather than trying to resolve them by putting something else on top or diffuse them with distraction, you wait until they dissipate on their own. No anger, getting distracted by other things, withdrawing, or whatever else it is you feel like doing. You hang with the tension; hang with the discomfort until it gives way. You let it go.
I don’t know exactly why the process of hanging with the tension works, but it does. Suppression doesn’t. Holding onto emotions/situations and debating them in your head doesn’t. Putting bravery, humor, or whatever else on top doesn’t. Pretending the issue isn’t there doesn’t. Only when you face it can you let it go. Only then can you access that space of unconditional love.
Image source: https://www.pinterest.com/pin/507780926714815538/