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Tony Robbins Mic Drop Part II

“Which parent did you crave love from the most…” and, “who did you have to be in order to get that person’s attention.”

This is the Tony Robbins mic drop. This question ALSO relates back to last week’s post about drowning in other’s opinion of me. I craved love the most from my Dad. I never felt loved for who I was, only for who I could be for him. The person I needed to be was someone who went above and beyond in every and any situation.

For example, one time, Dad needed somebody to help him paint the outside of the house underneath the deck. He convinced me I was a perfect size and fit for the job, so I agreed. Put on my painting clothes, climbed underneath the deck and crawled over to the spot where dad was hoisting down my paint bucket.

I got paint all over me by the time I was done. Instead of a thank you, I got criticized for how much paint ended up on me and a lecture about being better, faster, and smarter. Everything I did was expected to be perfect, there was no room for grace.

Nothing is good enough as is, you must always push for better and greater, otherwise, you’re a lazy bum who will amount to nothing. And this is a theme I carried throughout childhood and working on to this day to unwind because while it’s important to have the drive, it’s also important to celebrate your victories along the way. Otherwise, you live in a constant perpetual state that plows you through life without appreciating any fruit of your labor and leaves you always feeling, never good enough.

This constant pressure to know better, be better and do better, fueled my need to overachieve in all the things. What I didn’t know then but know now is that I was over-performing in hopes I’d get his attention. Tell me I’m doing a good job, please! Tell me you’re proud! Tell me I’m not a fuck up! 

And right about here is where the bomb exploded in my head like, oh shit. I’m still living and making decisions based off of the want to please my Dad and make him proud because I want to hear ‘”I’m proud of you,” or “I love you for you,” from him before it’s too late.

Jesus, I’m still living under his strict and harsh expectations for me and I haven’t lived under their roof in over a decade! Instead of asking myself how I want to proceed, etc. I’m operating out of habit and the underlying need to please Dad.

Well, hot. damn.

Once again, I need to get the extra voices out of my head and focus only on mine.

Let’s go back to last week’s post for a moment and bring these two together. I have anxiety because I’m trying to please those on the outside looking in and ignoring my own personal wants by burying them under endless mountains to climb/projects to finish.

By not paying attention to MY voice and worrying constantly about how I can show up for others causes massive anxiety because I feel split. Do I actually want to freelance? Do I actually want to have my own company one day? Do I actually want…

When people ask me what I want to do I simply tell them, I want to write books and make a difference. I realized I need to commit to making this real. I never commit to consistency with this blog or the content I publish on my Instagram. I’m not intentional and I keep it small by not sharing these blog posts on other platforms.

I feel less anxiety when I embrace every part of me that makes me, me. And if you need the reminder to love you for you, here it is: we need you as you are, you’re you for a reason.

Tony Ribbins Mic Drop quote on blog

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Grieving Death Feels Paralyzing

In between random bouts of crying and catching myself staring off into the distance, I haven’t been able to shake the funk Grandma’s death has left on me.

The overpowering need to cry is paralyzing sometimes and the emotions are too raw. This isn’t my first death, but it is the first death that’s affected me this deeply. So deep it’s unlocked a few boxes I’ve had cemented shut for a decade (at least).

For as long as I can remember, I’ve been somewhat angry at my mother and at this moment the details don’t matter. Some of my anger is justified and some of it not.

I haven’t lived near family (or had a true blue friend) for a long time, many miles and time zones separate us and if you would’ve asked me a month ago, I would’ve told you it was better that way — being alone felt like the best option, no family drama or obligation.

Then I flew to Buffalo to put my Grandmother to rest and saw everyone I hadn’t seen for years. It felt comfortable, relatively welcoming and nice to “be home,” but that same outsider feeling slowly crept through my skin, cryptically at first and more loudly a few weeks later.

I had prepared to give Grandma’s eulogy, but not for the emotional aftermath of seeing family I had’t seen in six long years.

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While writing Grandma’s eulogy (which was its own heart-wrenching journey) I came to the conclusion Grandma tried her best. We didn’t have the relationship I wanted and could rattle off a number of instances she handled poorly throughout my childhood, but despite all of her shortcomings and the long distance between us, she still showed up and it took her dying and my responsibility to give the eulogy to reflect on her.

And that bit makes me sick with guilt.

The grieving process is different for everyone, but her death has leaked into family truths I’ve been outrunning for a long time and it’s hard to put Pandora back in her box.

I’m left emotionally raw, confused and uncertain how to heal.

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