This little quote might sound strange. If it does, that is because you cannot get it. Lucky you, in some ways.
A codependent person finds meaning in life by having someone to care for. More than having someone who cares for them. Their dharma in life is to help, rescue others. And so we think… As a result, you learn that the other comes first. Never ever you put on your oxygen mask first, before you put it on the baby. First time on an airplane can be confusing, for codependents.
I have been one. It’s important to clarify, we are all codependents (we need others to function) to a certain extent and our world seems to work better when there is collaboration x individuality. But codependents take it to another level.
For instance, see me. I was one. I am one. I have to really watch it not to fall under the codependent pattern which I have been working against. This is my achilles heel – attachment – finding meaning by caring for and being cared for another.
When I went through a break up, it was not the pain of losing that individual (thankfully it was not a huge loss). I was grieving for the loss of my meaning in life, my sense of self – how can I be in this world if I am not the carer? I had no one to tend to. It may sound weird, but we can assimilate ideas as children and those get ingrained in us. I recall a vivid image of me taking my younger sisters and showing them around on their first day of school. I remember helping them acquaint with the place. I think my mother delegated that task to me. As an obedient child (before I went a bit black – sheep) I assimilated to this extent that I feel responsible for others. Or better. FELT. This has been changing as I grow out of the codependent shell I had nested in for over 30 years.
Fast forward to this picture. I feel so comfortable with myself and more, I feel so unbound by my reputation (how others perceive you). It was not long ago I was online dating, which meant, handing in my confidence and sense of self to them. Once I found myself interested in someone, I would anxiously wait for the unveiling of what would not come. That is because when I put myself into that scenario, the codependency would rise up. After all, unconsciously, for a co dependent – if they cannot see me? The “me” I see may not exist”. That is because codependents seek validation from outside, not internal sources.
I was never a general codependent, that is, this pattern did not extend to all intimate relationships, only the ones that I valued most.
About the quote: someone may read it and think: oh, illiterate one. Let them. But codependents or codep in recovery may understand. I have reached a moment where I hold my heart, not on my sleeve, but on my hand. And that is pure acceptance. And all the validation I need.