Feeling Worthy of a Good Life
Going Back to the Source
When I was in elementary school and my cousin lived with us, she would punish me if anything good happened to me. I have this vivid memory of shopping and my mom offering to buy me this hot pink tunic with shorts underneath ... it was very in fashion for kids my age at the time. My cousin kept pinching me really hard and not letting go, ordering me in a whisper to tell my mom I didn't want it. And I obliged, thereby really confusing my mom.
This childhood abuse instilled a fear in me. I associated being happy or having good things happen with pain and terror. It made me really sad to come to this realization, but of course it's also a huge breakthrough to start separating my feelings of joy from those of fear.
Making the Connection
What helped me arrive at this realization was being aware of what I was feeling, and finding it odd that I would think terrible, frightening thoughts when I had been feeling joyful only moments prior. The disconnect pushed me to dig deeper into the source, and query when I had felt that same way in the past. Thankfully, the search was successful.
Similar to when I finally made the connection between my fear of ghosts and feeling guilty about something I'd done (which you can read about in this post), it seems almost like a happy coincidence that I stumbled upon this realization. I do think being mindful and connected to yourself helps, as well as asking questions of yourself when an emotional response doesn't make sense. In the end, I'm grateful that these discoveries can help me to live a freer, more unfettered life.