Feelings Associated With Shame

Draupadi as humiliated in Virata's durbar by K...

Draupadi as humiliated in Virata’s durbar by Kichaka (left). (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Although the quality of my life has vastly improved over the past four years there are still demons that lurk under the surface.  I am aware of them now and awareness brings separation.  The biggest one, or perhaps the one that encompasses them all is shame.  It manifests itself in a myriad of feelings.

There is a sense that the rules for everyone else do not apply to me.  There is a sense that I have been set aside for special punishment and other people deserve happiness, success and wealth.  There is the sense that I uniquely deserve to be humiliated in life.  I have never felt otherwise except that now I am more aware of it than I ever have been.  I feel a vast reservoir of grief and anger buried inside of me that is met with humiliation when it surfaces in front of other people.  So I keep it hidden.

I often feel like I should not be where I am and that I should feel ashamed for the position I find myself.  I often expect to be told that I’m not allowed to do what ever it is that I am doing or that what ever it is that I am doing, I am doing it wrong.  I feel this way when I am chopping wood in the yard.  A car will pass by on the street and I will feel angry.  I will feel that the people in the car are laughing at me.  It’s as if it is funny if I try to do certain things.  If the wood falls over unexpectedly they will laugh at me.  I remember as a kid thinking that all those assholes from the Village Day Camp were watching me through a crystal ball when I was alone and everything I did was cause for ridicule.  As a grown man, when I mowed the lawn of my house in Philadelphia I would imagine that the neighbors were looking at me and thinking that I was mowing the lawn incorrectly.

People who judge annoy and trigger me because I was judged incessantly when I was a kid.  For the same reason my default setting is to judge other people.  No one has ever apologized for treating me so poorly.  No one has ever apologized for creating this burden that I have carried my entire life and that has turned something that could have been joyful and interesting into something that is stifling and a misery.  My only solace is the hope that I can turn it around.  I can’t dwell on all that I have missed out on.  Nor can I dwell on all that I will never come to experience because my growth and development has been delayed.  The grief and loss that dwelling on these things would cause would be too much to bear.

The healthy thing, the only thing I can do now is to move forward, forgive myself and focus on what I am grateful for.  To do otherwise would only keep me stuck.

1 Comment

Filed under Shame

One response to “Feelings Associated With Shame

  1. Pingback: Mowing the Lawn | Winston Scrooge

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