“Sometimes you have to kind of die inside in order to rise from your own ashes and believe in yourself and love yourself to become a new person.”
~ Gerard Way
There is no doubt getting over a narcissist is a painful experience. I am often asked when the grieving ends. Everyone is different. You can’t put a time frame on the healing process. What I do know is that the longer you avoid your pain, the longer it takes to recover. We must confront our pain and process it in order to heal and move on.
As we discuss here, writing about it helps, expressing ourselves helps, meditating helps. All of these things help, but it is up to you to put these things in motion for yourself. No one else can do it for you and until you do, you will remain stuck. You will not thrive. It is your choice.
“What doesn’t kill us makes us stronger.”
We must surrender our ego, feel and process our pain. We must drop all inner resistance and start being honest with ourselves. Our narcissist may have lied to us for years, but to lie to ourselves is no longer acceptable. It is no way to live. You can't run from yourself, avoid your feelings, or deny your reality for any longer. No one who is lying to themselves is living in the light of consciousness.
Enlightenment is what we all seek, but in order to achieve this, we first must be honest with ourselves about our situation. We cannot avoid anger and fear. We must feel these feelings, confront them and process them before we can truly move on.
No one wants to experience pain, but we must accept it is a fundamental part of life. Unfortunately, our modern culture has conditioned us to avoid pain and seek pleasure and to think only in terms of dualities or complete opposites. Instead of finding a balance, we are led to believe that everything has to be either:
RIGHT OR WRONG
BLACK OR WHITE
FAIR OR UNFAIR
CERTAIN OR UNCERTAIN
….and here’s the biggest misconception that ruins our entire view of life:
PLEASURE OR PAIN
Yes, we are conditioned and programmed to think we can:
SEEK PLEASURE AND AVOID PAIN
Everything we do is centered around running from pain and enhancing pleasure. But guess what? Guess what is so fundamentally wrong with this?
And this lesson (besides learning to live in the moment) has changed my life and my attitude towards everything…
We cannot avoid pain. To think we can is ignorant. Yet, many of us spend our lives fooling ourselves to think we can. Pain is part of the human condition. It is part of life. We lie to ourselves that everything is ok when it’s not. It is this behavior that keeps us stuck and dead inside.
"Pain and pleasure, like light and darkness, succeed each other."
~ Laurence Stern
We must accept that with pleasure comes pain and with pain comes pleasure. We must learn to live in the grey and stop trying to force certainty in life where there can be none. The more we deny our reality and lie to ourselves, the deeper we put ourselves in the dark.
Unfortunately, this is how many of us learned how to get through the tough times. We have learned to use denial as a coping mechanism. What we fail to realize is that the very method we thought was helping us is really killing us inside.
“God instructs the heart not by ideas, but by pains and contradictions.”
~ Jean Pierre De Caussade
When something hurts in life, we typically avoid it. We rarely think of it as something we are meant to learn from. In fact, we immediately try to find a way to get rid of the painful feeling. We run away thinking we can avoid our reality, but what we don’t realize is:
NOTHING EVER GOES AWAY UNTIL IT HAS TAUGHT US WHAT WE NEED TO KNOW.
We can lie to ourselves or run all we want, but the lesson will keep returning in different forms and manifestations until we learn what it is trying to teach us about our reality. The very first noble truth the Buddha points out is that pain is inevitable in human beings. It is part of the human condition. We cannot avoid it.
We must accept pain and open our hearts to look at what we can gain by facing it. Only then can we discover that the very thing that terrifies us is in fact a way for us to reconnect with our true self and experience a rebirth.
Facing reality shows you who you are and what is true. Confronting our pain and fear tells us something about ourselves. We must get to know fear, become familiar and intimate with it. It teaches us something. When we stop running and don’t act out, repress or blame, we encounter our true self.
Please be patient with yourself and understand that you must experience a period of grief and pain before you can truly find yourself again and move forward. You are not alone, of course, and together we will help each other through the pain to find the path forward we all deserve.
“If you live in the dark a long time and the sun comes out, you do not cross into it whistling. There's an initial uprush of relief at first, then-for me, anyway- a profound dislocation. My old assumptions about how the world works are buried, yet my new ones aren't yet operational. There's been a death of sorts, but without a few days in hell, no resurrection is possible.”
~ Mary Karr, Lit: A Memoir