Co-NNections Recovery Stories

The Enigma – June 9, 2020

I used to think that life was a random series of events with no rhyme or reason. Nothing made sense to me when I was growing up and there were many questions, but answers were few. White was black, straight was crooked, horizontal was vertical, but only on some days and that would be dependent on the moon and how it’s affecting the physical chemistry of its victims on any particular day. 

I thought that bad luck just happened to me no matter how much I tried to prevent it. Things— many abusive and dysfunctional things—continuously just kept happening and I never gave much thought to how or why. I just figured that it was the hand I’d been dealt since birth.

I felt that happiness and loving relationships were just a fantasy, an illusion reserved for only the chosen few and I clearly wasn’t one of them. I had already dated the seven dwarves but never found my prince. I thought that if my own mother couldn’t bring herself to love and see me, then how could anyone else for that matter? How could I? 

Always on the outside looking in as couples would walk by hand in hand. I was on the sidelines not sure if I would ever be a part of something, or anything! I finally convinced myself to settle for less. What I wanted didn’t exist, or maybe it just didn’t exist for me. So I would settle for whoever I could find, or whoever found me. Yes, we were both broken but if we had love then that would be enough for us to fix each other and fill that hollowness inside our hearts.

I got to a point where I finally needed to be in control. I needed to control my partners after two failed, physically and mentally abusive marriages. So I became a free-spirited, barefoot California mountain girl and I set out to teach the guys a lesson.

I needed to do this so I wouldn’t be alone out there. I picked younger guys and set out to fix them. I thought if I supported all their needs and demands then they would love me and change for me. But of course, they did not change and I was hurt that they didn’t love me as much as I loved them. 

In my opinion, codependency can be a disease of extremes. Everything can be either all black or all white thinking. There are no gray areas in between. This type of thinking is self-sabotaging and damaging to myself and others. I am learning from my CoDA program that relationships should be based on mutual respect, understanding, vulnerability, honesty, love, and trust. Without some or all of these, I am doomed to remain stagnant and rot in a prison of my own making. I am so very grateful to CoDA for helping me to see my stagnant, rotting spots, and for providing the necessary tools that are required to cut them out.

P.S. I kissed the frog. I finally got the fairy tale and the prince but we’ve been through the briars and back. There were no tiaras and no glass slippers. Although I wish we did have glass slippers to toast from, for our approaching 25th anniversary!

Thank you for reading my story.  

In Peace, Love & Understanding,

Pamela W. –  2/20/2020

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