Reply to XX on Early Wounds
Your statement about how joy, not just bad stuff, can trigger the reactive pattern is profoundly insightful. My husband of 30 years says my way of approaching the world is, “Feeling bad is feeling good.” What he means is that I cannot just fully experience joy but have to sabotage it somehow. He also says, “If Ray Jennings were alive for just 5 minutes, I would punch right him in the face without hesitation.” Ray is my father. Kurt’s anger is because of my early wounds in a violent alcoholic family home.
So this part of the pattern is often less obvious to me than the part about how I react to bad situations. I don’t tend to notice how I’m limiting joy, but my husband notices, and he’s been saying this at me since we met, when I was 19 years old. I’m 50 now.
Interesting, too, about the cold back. It felt like my skin had been stripped up off my spine, and my insides were expose to the chilly air.
As for stage – I seem to be going up and down between Equanimity and Reobservation, for sure. What confuses me is how peaceful and really unavoidable jhanas are, yet I somehow seem to encounter that insight stage as soon as I begin looking at them.
That desensitization work sounds like something I should try. It does make me a little queasy to consider right now, having just had a particularly painful encounter and not knowing, for that reason, if I can control the dose.
About writing out a lot of response in my journal – part of that is because I want to document it for my own later reading into my patterns over time. However, I’m embarrassed to admit, but admit it I will, that the other thing you point out – effort to find a replacement object of codependency to cling to – is also going on. It seems that writing the stuff out is, deep down, an attempt to find somewhere to bury it, or drop it where someone else will pick it up and bury it for me so that I do not have to acknowledge it, let alone investigate it as a bundle of sensations. How do I know? Because those words you wrote stung.