"I've finally learned how to lovingly hold my heart when my heart hurts from the pain of disconnection with loved ones," said Meagan in our phone session. "I've discovered that it's possible to feel peaceful even in the midst of loneliness and heartbreak."
Does it seem like a paradox to you to feel both peaceful and sad at the same time?
Peaceful and Sad at the Same Time
When life events are challenging — a loved one is angry at you, you've ended a relationship, you've been fired from a job, a loved one has died — your heart hurts with the loneliness, heartbreak, grief, and helplessness over others and events, and from the sadness and sorrow of the situation.
You have 2 choices regarding how to handle these very painful feelings.
• You can do everything you can to avoid feeling them with your substance and process addictions — to food, drugs, alcohol, work, spending, sex, TV, Internet, daydreaming, anger, blame, withdrawal, people-pleasing, and so on.
• You can hold your heart, opening to the feelings with deep kindness and tenderness toward yourself.
When you do the first — avoid the feelings — you are abandoning yourself, which causes anxiety, depression, shame, anger, and/or emptiness.
When you do the second, you are loving yourself, connecting with yourself and with your spiritual Source of love, compassion and comfort. This creates an inner feeling of safety and peace, even in the midst of pain.
The Mistaken Choice
It is likely that you learned as a child many ways of avoiding feeling your painful feelings of loneliness, heartbreak, grief, and helplessness over others, as you were too little to manage these feelings yourself. Unless you had a parent who knew how to be there for you with deep love and compassion when you were hurting — an empathic parent who knew how to connect with you and your feelings — you had to learn to avoid them to survive.
However, now, as an adult, you can learn to manage the painful feeling of life. You can learn to give to yourself what your parents didn't know how to give to you — to become the loving parent to yourself that you still need. You can learn to hold your heart, bringing in the compassion and comfort of Spirit, giving yourself the caring, tenderness, gentleness, and understanding that you need to feel peaceful and safe in the midst of the pain.
It is a big mistake to believe that avoiding the pain is safer than embracing it — whether it's past pain or present pain. A member of Inner Bonding Village, who had been severely abused as a child, states: