Learning to be loved
I learned to not trust anyone who loves me when I was a child. I think many folks do, not just the gaggle of McAfee children. Seems to me, most of us spend a large part of our lives playing bumper cars with our relationships. We charge at one another and then, bounce off into space until we make connection with the next car. We’re always looking over our shoulders, afraid and exhilarated by the proximity of the other cars in the ring. It’s a brutal, confusing way to live and so many of us find ourselves loving one another precisely this way.
Recently, I’ve been given several opportunities to examine this conditioning, this unrelenting suspicion of those who love me. The Universe responds when you seek to heal old wounds and, my goodness, I’m getting lesson after lesson; each one another illustration in trust and love. Each lesson is another chance to heal, to repair what was broken by a notso-wonderful childhood. Seek and ye shall find, yes?
If you want to learn how to fly, you don’t have to understand how your wings work. That’s the thing with love. We love one another, but we don’t understand the dynamics, the logistics, the hows and whys of what we’re doing. We just love and hope for the best. We just crash our bumper cars into one another and let go of the wheel and scream with joy.
I’m the kind of girl who always, always loves in this way. I throw my hands in the air, I fly, and I love with abandon. Loving people isn’t the problem. It’s being loved. It’s looking over my shoulder, wondering when and how you will hurt me, let me down, let me fall. It’s bracing myself for the crash of your car against mine and feeling not the exhilaration of love and opportunity, but the sting of fear and the potential for hurt.
How do I learn to accept the love I’m given without waiting for the other shoe to drop? When you love me, I expect you to yell, to lie, to find fault, to undermine my happiness, belittle my success, and ridicule me. Isn’t that terrible? When you love me and you don’t behave like the ghosts of my past, I spend my time waiting for that other shoe. How do I learn to be loved fully especially when I have this proclivity for loving? How do I reprogram, recondition, heal? How does someone who loves so freely, so openly, so abundantly learn to be fully embraced and loved?
The lessons I’ve sought and been given over the past few weeks have been difficult to process, my friends. I have been given an opportunity to take inventory of myself. I was willing to subject my ego to some beating over the past few days. I think when we seek growth and healing, we have to be open to how the Universe presents it. That Oneness has to be acknowledged! I am motivated to implement some positive changes in my journey because of these lessons. Not only am I motivated, but part of me that was fractured has healed and I find myself standing taller and stronger than ever.
I think learning to be loved has to start with loving all the fractured pieces of myself-infant Beth; little Beth; teenage Beth; suicide Beth; young wife Beth; and so on and so on until we reach this beautiful whole person, this glorious Me. I’ve been collecting the pieces, reaching back and finding more and more of who I was, so I can continue on to who I am becoming.
I love with my soul screaming wildly into the night, with a smile so big it could light the world. My bumper car is steering off course and, most likely, right at you. Instead of bracing myself for your love, I’m going to keep gathering those pieces of Me. Every little piece of who I am longs to be pres- ent and healed to experience the greatest power in the Universe. Love.