Button, Buttons, Buttons


I was so pleased to see my sisters when they came for Mom’s birthday.  I don’t see them very often and it was fun to be together for a few days.  Mom was very glad to see them, though she did seem a bit overwhelmed at times.  One of the gifts they brought was an objective view of how things are working here – Eddie and I are too close to see it with objectivity.  It was gratifying to hear them say how well we deal with Mom, that we are very good with her.  They said how patient we are – I will admit I get impatient and sometimes it sneaks out in spite of my efforts.  Ellen made a very valuable observation – I realized when she said it that it has been going around in my brain but I didn’t have words for it.  She observed that  when Mom has too much coming at her, she gets agitated and feisty ( my paraphrase) so she suggested not expecting her to always understand exactly.  I realized I have been expecting logic and sense as well as wanting to be right about things;  I would get irritated and frustrated when it didn’t happen.  As Dr. Phil says “And how’s that working for you?”.  Sounds like we push each other’s buttons.

Speaking of buttons, another things Ellen talked about was buttons.  She had wanted to be in solitary contemplation and the head person said to her “Oh no dear, you don’t want to do that”.  She explained that it is important to live in a community with other people until you have your rough edges smoothed off, otherwise you will slice yourself to death on those rough edges.  You come across all kinds of people, including people who drive you crazy and push your buttons.  The objective is to come to the point where you no longer have buttons to push.  I started thinking about it visualized a row of buttons from my throat to my root chakra.  Then I realized I probably have a double row at times and possibly down both legs.  Depends on the situation.  Then I visualized a button fading until it wasn’t there any more – now, do I have to label the buttons so I know which ones are fading?  There I go again, overthinking it and wanting the hows, whys and wherefores in great detail.  That’s my need to “get it right”, or is it fear of being wrong.  Add one huge button for that in the middle of my forehead.

I have realized lately that most of my buttons are on autopilot – something happens and I am angry but not sure how it happened or why.  One thing I am learning in working with Debye in my  massage is where some of this is coming from.  A lightbulb went on in one session when I realized a lot of it is from childhood and my little girl who didn’t know how to deal with it.  I have gathered up in my arms and put her in my heart so she is safe.  Now I know that I am the adult and my job is to love her and protect her so she can be carefree and play in the sunshine.  Her perception was so different from the facts, but she didn’t know that.  So now when something comes up, the first things I do is to hug my little girl and tell her she is fine, she doesn’t have to worry or deal with it, I am here to protect her.  I haven’t gotten it down pat yet – I still react rather than think it through objectively, but I am getting better at comforting my little girl first.  I may not know the exact trigger at the time, so I have to think if this is really about me or not.  I tend to take responsibility for everything and everyone – it’s not my job.  What a relief to know that.

When my husband and mother argue a bit, I no longer feel I have to referee or make them feel better afterwards.  Old habits are to break, now I let them work it out because “I don’t have a dog in the fight”.  From Ike Pono I learned “I care, but not so much”.  Which translated is, I care but I am not going to tie myself up in knots about it.  It doesn’t help anyone to do that, my past experience definitely shows me that.  I am also learning that often, it isn’t about me and not to take it personally.  Oh my, that is a big button for me.  I am getting a college level course in that with my Mom.  Living in the house I grew up in with my husband and my mother is a guaranteed button pusher.  At times I feel caught in the middle – maybe that is how moms feel with growing kids and a husband.  My Mom is 93 and  seems to be more of a little girl than an adult – except she knows what being an adult is like.  So I have become the parent (reluctantly) and no experience being a parent.  As she has gotten more and more confused and bewildered, she comes out with the most surprising things.  Sometimes it is funny, sometimes if it hurtful.   So now I am learning more about it’s not about me and not to take it personally.  I am doing better than I was at the beginning, but I find at times it takes me by surprise  and all my buttons are firing.  The good news is, some of them are fading a little and I am slowly getting better at handling it.  There is still a long way to go but I have come a long way.

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