Patterns of behavior

by tamarjacobson

Just when I think I have changed radically from year to year, I read a post that I wrote on this blog about a year ago. I am always amazed at how similar the issues are that I am writing about. It might leave me discouraged, but then I notice a tiny difference, a tweak of a change in attitude or feeling that I experience now since then. So, there is movement albeit at a snail's pace. It is a type of progress I suppose.

Maturity is a complex process indeed. A constant negotiation with my inner child of yester-year. The challenge is mostly because I can never predict when the early childhood Tamarika will jump up into my adult Tamar's brain. Half the fun is working out why emotional buttons get pushed when they do, or catching them before they strike! I wish it was like with a cold. After all, I can feel a cold coming on. There are all sorts of symptoms and warning signs: fatigue, burning eyes, scratchy throat, sniffling, or little aches and pains in the bones. When my emotional buttons get pushed it seems as if there are no warning signs. Suddenly there I am, feeling like a six to ten year old child just as I am sitting in an important meeting surrounded by all kinds of academic and intellectual people staring at me waiting for a response. If only I could grab a mirror at that moment to remind me that I look like a life-experienced, educated woman in her sixties, instead of feeling like a fumbling, terrified, fragile little girl. I wish there was some warning sign like burning eyes and a scratchy throat – even a sneeze or two would help. It is so sudden and immediate that there is no time to negotiate with the little person I have emotionally regressed to. I am on the spot, all eyes on me, and I stumble and stutter, forgetting how to speak the English language, and garble some incoherent sentence so softly that people strain to hear me.

Lately, I sense a movement or a slight shift in my inner response to these situations. In the past, when that would happen to me, I would become angry after these incidents occurred, silently scolding myself and feeling badly about what an idiot I must have sounded like. This type of denigration would go on for what seemed like hours.

These days I am more compassionate with me, and am able to shrug it off with an understanding sigh. Sometimes, I even become aware of what is happening to me as it occurs. And then I am able to breathe deeply and find my way back to the me of now, sending the little, inner Tamarika back to rest quietly, safely in the recesses of my mind.

A year ago at Mining Nuggets: The good mother