Often I am so overwhelmed with pain, confusion and fear that I make no progress. I see no end to the pain caused by my covert narcissist; I see no future in which I can be happy and whole. It is usually during these weeks that I somehow find a new resource – a website, a video, a book, a poem. Most recently I found the book
Healing Rage: Women Making Inner Peace Possible, by Ruth King MA,
This is just what I needed.
I have so much to say about this book and the exercises Ms. King recommends, but for now I want to focus on my inner “rage child”. I don’t think it matters what you call it, because all of us victims of narcissists have an inner being that absorbs the shock, takes on the pain, protects our ego. Ms. King calls it our “Rage Child”, some call it our inner child.
What is most relevant to me right now is her passage in which she suggests that we send our Rage/Inner child into the world to face our battles for us. She references one of her patients who was unhappy at work, and was continually raging at her bosses, to no avail. The therapist asked her unhappy client “why would you send a child to do an adults’ job?”
This is one of the most pure, poignant, on-target concepts I’ve read/heard about during my recovery. As I look back over my life, I see this as truth. Every time I’ve been faced with a difficult situation, a potential conflict, a situation that required me to stand up for myself, my adult self took a Bye (sports term, for those unfamiliar, meaning time off from competition) and sent in my inner child. Of course I’m incapable of handling conflict! The “I” I’ve asked to handle conflict is 5 years old! In retrospect, she’s done a pretty damn good job, given what I’ve asked her to do!
As I read this book I’ll try to blog about the steps involved in healing our rage child. I highly recommend the book though. There are steps too detailed for me to outline here. I checked the book out of my local library, so if you are on a budget that is an option.
Right before I began reading the book I I saw the following graphic:
I’m guessing this means little to most of you. I, however, have never read Alice in Wonderland and have never seen the movie, so I have no preset frame of reference to put this in, and am therefore free to interpret it as I choose. It was a revelation “Where do you want to go?”, “I don’t know”, “then it doesn’t matter“.
I’ve been bombarded for the past 2 years, since my ex filed for divorce, by well meaning people asking “what will you do now”, “where are you going”, “when will you sell the house”, etc, etc. All along I’ve been paralyzed with uncertainty. Where will I go? I’m a 54 year old disabled woman with 3 children, I haven’t had a real job in 18 years, and I co-own a partially cash business that I’ve been pushed out of, making division of assets and alimony and child support tricky business. Where am I supposed to go? What am I supposed to do? What is next, when will I make a move, what will that move be, why can’t I move on with my life?
All along, I’ve been perplexed about where to start. There has to be a starting point, right? There has to be a square on the game board of my life that says “START HERE“. I’ve been waiting for it. I’ve been seeking it by going to therapy, doing meditation, reading, writing, talking, examining, and I am no closer to finding the START HERE square than I was 2 years ago!
This simple quote gave me my START HERE block. It doesn’t matter.
I have no vision, no dream, no goal, so all I need to do is move. (not figuratively) All I need to do is continue taking steps. It doesn’t matter which direction those steps are. It’s time to let my inner perfectionist go and to embrace my inner gypsy, because which ever way I go, something will happen; something will change, and it doesn’t really matter what that change is. I went through 6 years of schooling to be a psychologist, yet I never used that education. Even the best laid plans are mere suggestions, simple ideas, that may or may not come to fruition. My life will unfold in ways I can’t anticipate at this point, so all I need to do is continue to participate. No Plan, No End Goal, No Outline, No set place to go. So, it doesn’t matter which path I choose. Any path I choose will take me somewhere and I’ll deal with it.
So, I will give my inner rage child time off. At the same time, I won’t pressure myself to make life altering decisions. I’ll just choose a direction and see where it takes me. It could end badly, but life has been pretty shitty for the past 25 years, so if I know nothing else, it’s that I can deal with shit. Yet maybe, if I just choose a path, any path, it won’t be shitty.
Either way, it’s just a step, that I, as an adult will take, allowing my inner/rage child to rest.