It’s time to set down the shame.
Put it down.
This is not your burden to bear anymore.
And anyone who tries to make you feel as though you are bad person because of the situation you ended up in… well, there is a special place in the afterlife for them. There they can feel the pain of the judgment and disapproval that they provided during their lifetime.
And I truly believe that.
You are not what happened to you. You are not what happened to your person. You are not at fault for the demons they were fighting. No matter what they may have told you when they were alive.
That shame that you picked up what seems like a lifetime ago?
It isn’t yours.
Let it go.
My whole life I have carried varying amounts of shame. Sometimes it was mine alone and other times I picked up the shame of those around me, trying to help them by carrying the burden for them for a while.
My need to help others has always been my greatest strength…and my greatest weakness.
–I suppose I should take a second to clarify what shame is, as it is not merely being ashamed of my own or another’s actions. It is much, much bigger than that.
There are two reactions to a situation that from the surface seem similar, but underneath it all are vastly different.
There is guilt and there is shame. Guilt is believing that I “did something bad” and shame is believing that “I am bad”. Guilt is knowing that our actions were wrong, but can be corrected – however who we are as a person remains unchanged. Shame is believing that our actions, because they were wrong, make us a bad person.
I hope that makes sense. —
Anyway, when I met my husband, I found a way to pick up some of his shame for him. I carried it around like a badge of honor. I knew he was a good person, but he couldn’t see it. I wanted to lessen his pain, so I wore his shame as though it were my own.
For the record, I have never once nor will I ever be ashamed of him or anything that he did. That man went through hell and hit every obstacle on the way. Some of it was self-inflicted, sure, and his actions were not always in his best interest. But he was an incredible human being. And he didn’t deserve to carry the weight of believing otherwise.
So I did it for him.
And it’s time that I stopped.
I am working very hard on recognizing shame talking in my own everyday life. I am trying to put it down for the both of us. It is not an easy task as shame is a very sneaky little beast and creeps in when you are already drowning under the weight of so many emotions.
But I am trying.
He is no longer here to work on himself and learn how to say no to shame triggers, but I am.
And I owe it to myself to live my fullest life possible.
It’s time to say goodbye to shame. And hello to vulnerability. Hello to resilience. Hello to a fulfilling life.
Wish me luck. 💜
((For a great post about grief shame, check out my friend John Polo’s post here ☺️))