Stopping the noise…

Hey All,

I know it’s been a bit since I’ve written, but there have been some things going on inside of me that have required some very personal attention and time away from outside stimuli. I’ve backed off of social media groups I belong to, left my damn cell phone at home when going out and I’m seeking out ways to navigate the journey I’m currently on. I’ll explain as best as I can, so sit back, grab a drink and see if this journey is something you’d be willing to take if you were in my place.

I’ve focused this blog on the agony and pain that the estrangement and alienation forced on us by our oldest daughter. That pain is ever present in my every day life, that will remain ever so, but ya know what? I realized in the silence I sought that I was placing too much energy and focus on the pain and anguish, thus giving too much of my energy to someone that doesn’t even care any more. Screw that! I am walking through the pain every day with my head held high and learning to accept my powerlessness in the grand scheme of things. I am powerless when it comes to contact with my beloved grandchildren, but I am NOT powerless in my love for them. She can put up all kinds of roadblocks and send bullshit letters from some attorney that probably doesn’t even know her name is attached to said mailing, but she CANNOT make me unlove the children. She can make it impossible for me to be a part of their lives, for now, but she CANNOT make me forget them. It always seems to come down to a competitive type vernacular when I write how I feel about this mess, but it’s not a competition. And, if it is, I’ll concede to her “winning” this battle, but winning is hollow when your opponent doesn’t fight back, don’t you think? I’m focusing my fight within, and I am going to pick the battles ahead very carefully.

Eight months ago I reached out to a trusted person and sought guidance at what I now realize was the beginning of this current trek I am engaged in. Eight months… It took me 8 months to take the first step. It may not seem like all that long, but looking back it seems like an eternity in the context of things as they stand presently. I sat with this person for 90 minutes a week ago and poured my heart out. I let go of all the dirty, nasty secrets, I put a voice to the voices that my grandchildren are not allowed to have and I cried. A lot. Ugly crying. After waiting 8 months to take the first step into my journey I figured it was to my benefit to let go of it all and trust in whatever advice would be rendered. My heart was broken anew when I left this person’s office, but I gained so much more insight and clarity, the breaking was necessary. And is necessary. Nothing worth having comes easy, hence the labor that we mothers suffer when bringing a new life to this world. Labor. Just the word itself makes you think of hard work and exhausting effort. Women are not the only ones that know what labor means, not by a long shot, and I would dare any one to say otherwise. I have seen my own husband after a 10 hour night of freight handling, worn out, dirty and beyond exhausted, portraying the meaning of the word labor in front of my very eyes. In much the same way, this journey is going to be full of exhausting and heartbreaking labor. Labor I am fully willing to take on and learn from.

Stopping the noise has been a blessing to me and something I would fully recommend to anyone who has a mind that can’t seem to sort out what it all means. I had to take a bit of time away and re-examine why I started this blog. I had to find my own inner voice in the cacophony of all the noise and I had to choose to listen to me. To my heart. To the spirit that is moving within me. I have walked without any type of spiritual compass for many years now, and felt like I had been doing a good job of navigating the twists and turns of my life until the day I was thrown out with the garbage. On that day the compass I had been using was not only broken, but smashed and ground into the earth. There was absolutely nothing left of any type of compass during the early days of estrangement. It was nothing but a free fall into an endless and dark abyss. The days of free falling came to end 8 months ago when I started to hear the noise in the far off distance. The noise started with me asking for time to talk when I was ready. The abyss did have a bottom, and I’ve spent these past 8 months climbing up from that bottom. Clawing my way out with bloodied fingers from clinging to whatever fissure I could hold on to. Crawling my way out on bruised and bloodied knees from constantly falling backward and getting back up to try again. The further up the walls of the abyss I made it, the louder the noise. After the meeting I had a week ago, the noise had reached levels that I couldn’t stand anymore and I just had to shut it off.

We are all vulnerable to the noise that life in the 21st century brings and we are all more than capable of shutting it off. I still hear the noise to a degree, but it’s an invited noise, not at a decibel level that is unsafe or would drive even the most enthusiastic rock music fan crazy. I listen to softer music these days mostly because of my age, but also because I know that music has a direct affect on me. Loud and banging = clean the house. Soft and soothing = a peaceful mind. I always listen to Kenny Rogers on my Echo dot while writing, whether it’s my blog or book, and I always listen to the Backstreet Boys in the morning. It’s noise I choose when I want it, but the noise of the past 8 months was both an invited and uninvited guest. I have learned and continue to learn how to turn down the volume on the uninvited guest and have a whole new outlook on this estrangement and alienation. It goes without saying that I know I will have many more dark days in my future, days that I’ll be staring down into that abyss again, days that I would not wish even on the daughter that threw me away. I now know I can turn down the noise, or change the station and I can reset my playlist to my liking.

I’m going to end here for tonight and hope that anyone reading this will find some tiny nugget of help in these words I’ve typed tonight. I feel strong right now, and I feel empowered for the future. This journey is just beginning and I am quite curious to see where it takes me. I’m grateful that I am not writing this blog for money, I would have lost my job because of my self imposed silence! Until next time…

Let the journey begin…
Photo by Barb Enos
Hendersonville,NC

2 thoughts on “Stopping the noise…

  1. Barb, I know what you mean by the noise. We have to find the voice inside us—the one that gives us a peaceful heart. At least, most of the time. It certainly makes this estrangement business a little easier.

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    1. I’m seeking that peaceful place in my heart with all the strength and fortitude I can muster. I’ve lost too much and given up too much to something I would have never thought I’d be giving it to. Not anymore. I woke for the first time today w/o my first conscious thought being of estrangement. Or anger. Or sadness. Another first for my new life…

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