In counselling today, we discussed this issue I have had, of positively labelling myself courageous, brave. I feel that I have the capacity and have demonstrated enough courage and bravery, to see why people label me as such…. but struggle with these labels.
The result of this discussion…….I have demonstrated these over decades of time. To survive all I have, and take care of myself for as long as I did, is ‘enough’ to earn me these labels.
We also discussed the term ‘warrior’ and I see that can shame people and why. I do have considerable insight and reflection capacity, to see this is a label, that people can give themselves to cope. They need it as an identity. But, it also shames others, who are not seen as being ‘warriors’. Which is not okay. I don’t want to shame anyone. I don’t need that label. I am human, I struggle at times. I don’t want the burden of trying to live up to the ‘warrior’ image. I don’t need that label as my armour – to help define my self image/identity. This was confirmed as healthy.
But, the outcome of discussing all this, is I have demonstrated enough bravery, courage, inner strength, resilience, insight, honesty, empathy…. to indeed call myself those descriptions. Without any clarification needed.
My counsellor does feel my ‘not good enough’ issues due to all the childhood abuse, have played into my issues with not accepting these labels/descriptions, in full. So, it is good I worked that out too. The ‘not good enough’ is something many narcissistic parent survivors, deal with. I see how mine, have affected me.
I don’t have to have 100% perfection – every single day – in courage and bravery etc…. to be ‘good enough’ to call myself these. No-one has perfection in these. What I have already demonstrated and continue to demonstrate over decades, ‘is enough’ to earn these descriptions.
We also discussed my recent thoughts about accepting complements, why I have struggled with them and how I am now dealing with them. Which was described as more self reflection, more insight. And definitely a healthy way to view compliments now. For example, someone calling me very beautiful. I can accept graciously, that is someone’s opinion. And that is okay. It is also okay if people don’t think I’m beautiful. I’m totally okay either way, and don’t ‘need’ people to think I’m beautiful.
What was interesting, was my counsellor stating, that although she can stand in front of 100’s of people and do speaking events (I have a fear of public speaking) ….. that she does not believe she would have coped with all I have, in the way I have. I dismissed this (typical of me) and stated she would only know that, if she had actually experienced it all. But, she responded, she has not coped as well, with circumstances far less severe and impacting. So, she does know she would have struggled far more – to cope with all I have endured. That is very honest of her. Shows that capacity for humility and dealing with reality about self – that I really cherish in people.
I also told her this ‘What I am/What I Am Not’ – has really forced me to confront all these issues. And that I know this is exactly why she decided I needed to do this. I told her, it’s like opening a can of worms. And she replied, yes opening cans of worms is good and worms fertilise soil. A gardening analogy, I really appreciated and amused me.
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