Day 65: Choosing Responsibility

The hardest thing for me to live out every day is the fact that I am 100% responsible for everything that happens in my life. I know that It’s true, but for so long, I struggled to understand the difference between taking full responsibility for what happens in my life and holding people accountable for what I felt were trespasses. I thought that it meant I had to allow people to treat me or speak to me any way they liked, and ultimately, I had to take responsibility for that. That was a very unempowered perspective. I had that perspective because I didn’t feel like I had any power. And to be even more truthful, I didn’t know that I felt powerless. I just was. If I had any power, I behaved as if my power was transforming into whatever I needed to be to get the person to stop treating me or speaking to me in ways I didn’t want them to.
But while I can articulate this now, I didn’t have power and powerlessness as concepts in my mind. I was thinking more about how to get the immediate issue to stop so that I could relieve my pain. I realize now that I was in survival mode emotionally. I was in a constant state of stress. I didn’t allow myself enough space or experience to perhaps realize what I was really feeling was powerlessness. And in times of escape, I just wanted to rest from all the energy I was expending trying to escape. In this state, I didn’t ever truly choose responsibility. I didn’t know what that meant at its core. All I knew was apologizing and taking the blame, even when I didn’t know what I was taking the blame for and when I didn’t think I did anything wrong.

I realize, and am realizing even more on this journey, that my mindset and emotional disposition stem from my childhood. I learned powerlessness, blame, and a lack of responsibility at home. There was a lot of broken heartedness at home, and I felt it and seemingly inherited it or adopted it. So, in an environment where my mother’s heart was wounded, guardedness, victimhood, and survival instincts were all on display. Never responsibility. I took it all in. I understand it now more than ever. I also understand why choosing responsibility is the only way to unlearn what I learned and get back my personal power. I used to get really bitter about some of these things now, but all I am is grateful now. I am grateful that I know, understand, and have empathy and compassion for my mother as an individual and woman with her own life experiences and that now I know better and am doing better. Today and onward, I choose responsibility.