Over the past three months, I've narrowed my recovery focus to the healing process. Specifically, healing from my marriage of 15 years (including 3 years of intermittent separations) and my pending divorce. I took this time just for myself, because all the emotional turmoil surrounding the legal wrap-up was slowly driving me crazy. Believe it or not, I was also trying to date earlier in the year, but kept getting very strong signals that the people I was picking out as dating partners were exact duplicates of my ex-wife—especially in regards to their lack of emotional availability.
So, I put the brakes on the dating scene and got involved in a 13-week divorce recovery group, along with my regular CODA meeting. To further direct my thinking, I began reading Deepak Chopra's new book, The Path to Love. This book was so affirming and encouraging, I bought the condensed version on CD-ROM.
The lesson I'm learning is that I am a whole, unique, self-affirming, self-loving individual. There is no need to frantically search for love, meaning, or a caretaker for my needs outside of my relationship with myself and God. Depending on external people or things for a sense of identity and wholeness is a vain pursuit! Everything I need to feel loved, whole, cherished, and un-dependent is inside of me. There is a spiritual reality within that cannot be touched or contaminated by externals. Sometimes it's called the Inner Child, the Spirit, God, Higher Power—whatever—yet this spirituality has been accessible to me all my life. I simply wasn't aware of the power or its availability. I'm learning that my responsibility is to work in harmony with this power, to take care of myself.
Just knowing that I have the power and the ability to take care of myself has been a huge boost to my self-esteem and my self-confidence. But this power is not just my self alone. My perspective is that I am a God-enabled self—a Spiritual self—who can respond to my human needs, rather than depending on another person.
I believe my co-dependency was a search for another person—another half—to complete the half of me I thought was missing. My co-dependency was a frantic, external search for love and affirmation that could (so I thought) only be fulfilled in a relationship. I've learned that such thinking was complete illusion.
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The illusion is perpetuated by the myth of romantic love and illusive chemistry in popular songs, movies, novels, etc. Messages such as, "I'm nothing without you," and "we were meant to be together," are media lies that feed the co-dependent frenzy to find completeness in another person.
Through recovery, I am discovering how to be a whole person for the first time in my life. I'm discovering that within me is the power to heal, the power to live passionately, and the power to love and cherish myself completely. Everything I've ever needed has been right here, in my heart, all along.
I'm no longer searching for that magic chemistry, my soul-mate, or my cosmic-twin to make me a complete person. I'm learning that love between two spiritually-attuned people is a mature decision, a choice, a partnership, where two whole people unite their resources to create a wondrous new reality for themselves, interdependent of their individuality and free from the mind-games of ego-dominance and control. I believe such a relationship is the goal of recovery from co-dependence. Perhaps most importantly, I believe that such a relationship is also possible with God—and when that relationship is realized, all other relationships become icing on the cake.
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Staff, H. (2008, December 16). Becoming Whole, HealthyPlace. Retrieved on 2022, May 29 from https://www.healthyplace.com/relationships/serendipity/becoming-whole