Monday, January 10, 2011

Pleasing our relatives

Part of the effort to be healthy is for many of us, me included, is the effort to please our relatives and in my case, my grown children. I have worked very hard to succeed personally and in my career. I have felt that my parents did not appreciate what I did in my life. They did not even bother to go to my high school graduation nor to the other graduations of my college degrees. Yet, my sons state that what I have done is just an extension of who I am. All those years where I forced myself to go to work and support them means nothing. The fact that I have three pensions coming in and my own house means nothing. I had to stop this pity party and look at it from a detached point of view. I was missing the bigger picture.

I had written about being concerned about the happiness of my grown up children and being involved in their everyday lives. It is wrong for me to do it. I have praised them for what they have done and yet I try and help them all that I can do. That is wrong too. It is not only wrong for them, but it is wrong for me. I sacrificed for them and they feel that it was their due. I never gave them the room for their feelings of self-accomplishment. I am still trying to place some control over them although indirect and they are resisting.

In Buddhist philosophy, there is no such thing as black and white thinking. Many people think this way too. Rigid thinking is not healthy thinking. I have forced them into this type of thinking and even that is an over estimation of my effect. They are trying to hammer out their own lives and I am interfering. It is not healthy for me either. They are not the villains and I am the heroine.

The key to everything is always the same thing and I forget all of the time and it is mindfulness. There is a new branch of psychology that stresses mindfulness in patients. In Buddhism, it is the cornerstone of looking at life. It is not easy to do, but one must detach and I guess I am boring in my constant repeating of it. Well, it is what I am dealing with right now. It is the way I can get healthier. Life is what it is, not a one strict interpretation.

I am really going to try and work on it today and stay out of their lives and work on the only one available to me, my own. It is the purpose of this blog and the only reason I started it. I don't want to go back to the way I was before I went to Korea.

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