It’s embarassing to note the emotional self-flaggelation I subject myself to within my insomniac weekday, typically consisting of nineteen hours of wakefulness. For whatever reason, I tend to spend the end of the night occasionally drifitng back to scenes from earlier in the day, and upon review and emotional reexperience I note things that I had not noted before. I also review a lot while I’m drifting off while writing at the computer, while taking a shower, and at work, too, particularly when I’m sweeping or cutting box tops in the stock room. Essentially it happens whenever I’m alone and not engaged in some goal-directed activity that requires meaningful and creative output, when the thoughts in my head are not congruent with that which I’m doing, such as writing or making artwork. If I’m left alone, my mind needs to be anchored in something so that my body can be meaningfully active in its service. When there is a dissociation, a disconnect, such as at work, my mind spirals off without any anchor. Without expression or meaningful distraction, it is only left to turn in on itself. And again, the way in which I relate to myself is not at all healthy.
With respect to my review of myself, I always seem to regard my behavior or what it was that I said as stupid. I often find myself shaking my head angrily and uttering “stupid” aloud to myself as I do so. I’m constantly calling myself stupid, fucking idiot, and feeling guilty and shameful for my persona. If at no other time, this is every evening. I just wished I could make people close to me understanding that no matter how judgemental of the culture we live in and our traditions and trends and of people in particular, and of course often people in the ultimate general, that every sword of mine is double-edged. Mostly because it pisses me off when people judge me because, damn it, that’s MY job. I want it done right — by someone willing to take the time to understand — so I’ll do it myself, and I work best alone where I don’t have some sloppy, uneducated, half-wit fucking ameteur getting in the way. These moments of meditation throughout the day are like micro-versions of the life review so many near death experiencers speak about. Hopefully my daily dose exempts me from the torture that would be awaiting me at the end of my tunnel as I would stand there, relentless psychological gavel in apparitional hand. I noticed that nothing ever seems to change in the nature of my self-judgement in these reviews.
Where does one develop such an automatic, inner critic? Usually the internalized voice of a parent or another authority figure, or perhaps even some assimilation of several such authorities. Its good to have such a critic, I suppose, but only a sensible one. A critic such as my own is never satisfied with anything I do, no matter how hard I try or what measure of success I seem to achieve. It seems only to focus on my failures, on potential losses associated with optional courses of action and their predicted rate of success and with strict standards that let so little pass. I am the mother, you are the child, and while you’re living under this roof, what I say goes.” So my way of handling myself emotionally is too similiar in nature to how my mother would handle me as a child for me to ignore. Or, lacking that, be capable of coughing it all up to coincidence. So the internalized authority or judge arises out of the imprinted emotional reactions of the mother to the child’s emotions.
As I continues to fail inevitably in her eyes, the anima then proceeds to kick me while I’m down. My persona has no hope of meeting the demands of my anima, as she cannot be satsified. The cards are never to play in my favor, lest a swift moment of insanity break through and I naturally fall into chance alignment with the anima’s judgement.
This judge is the feedback for the emotions, and in its appropriate state it would allow ones emotions to adjust. Unless the mother’s response is followed by adjusting the child to do the “right” thing, the child can only be programmed with her response void of course-correction. He has no chance to imprint a solution as no solution is provided to him. He knows what is wrong, but not what is right. The game is rigged. She provides no solution as she wants him to fail. When the imprint only provides criticism and offers no real or lasting solutions in a clear manner, offers no route to success, one only feels guilt, shame, embarassment, stupidity. Freedom comes only through the accomplishment of apathy or indifference.
Unless the internal judge can be changed.
“Even after a peak parenting experience, children never transition to a fully self-tuning physiology. Adults remain social animals: they continue to require a source of stabilization outside themselves. That open-loop design means that in some important ways, people cannot be stable on their own – not should or shouldn’t be, but can’t be. This prospect is disconcerting to many, especially in a society that prizes individuality as ours does. Total self-sufficiency turns out to be a daydream whose bubble is burst by the sharp edge of the limbic brain. Stability means finding people who regulate you well and staying near them. (86)”
― Thomas Lewis, A General Theory of Love
“Long-standing togetherness writes permanent changes into a brain’s open book. In a relationship, one mind revises another; one heart changes its partner. (144)”
― Thomas Lewis, A General Theory of Love
It’s been seven long years since I had a girlfriend. Have I been running from the solution?