Excerpt from Chapter 1
INSIGHT – Seeing yourself and recognizing that you need to make changes
“It was when I thought to myself: ‘I hope his airplane crashes’ that I became afraid. I grew afraid of myself. How could I possibly entertain such a thought about the man I had loved, the father of our children? I realized I could no longer live like this. I understood that I had to make a change in my life. It was the fear of going through a divorce and the anxiety over the pain that had made me stay in my marriage up until then. The fear of fear.”
These were the first sentences that Catherine spoke when she came to my office for a consultation. She continued: “Up until then I was only able to understand physical pain. If someone told me about a deep and lasting inner pain, or if I read books describing such pain, it felt completely foreign to me. I remember I became giggly when someone said to me: ‘It is only through understanding the deep inner pain that one can feel a deep and lasting happiness.’ I thought to myself: ‘Well that’s quite dramatic. So all of us who don’t feel that way are unable to feel true happiness I guess.’ Today I can say I understand. After having been at the bottom of the deepest, darkest valley with lasting pain and sadness over a long period of time, and after having slowly made it to the top of the mountain, today I can sometimes feel a little peace and happiness.
The other pain I could relate to was a deep pain in the solar plexus whenever I read or heard about the injustices in the world – war, hunger, rape, and other truths I did not want to be true. I could feel the same pain if something unfair were to happen to our children.
How was I to explain to the children that I could no longer go on living with their father? The fear made me endure it even longer. I wanted to cry, I wanted to scream – but it was impossible. My thoughts concerning the children were the strongest of all. I thought about the unconditional love to and from them. My anxiety made me stick with it – a little longer.
Each time my husband came home and the first ‘words from hell’ were said, the nausea would appear. Finally, it was always there as soon as we occupied the same room and he stood one meter away from me. That was when I first understood. I understood that my entire being was so violated by this person that my entire body was sick…..