It’s terribly hard for me to ask for help or for things I need and want. I grew up a middle child. I felt that I was almost always overlooked because one of my siblings had their beak open wider than mine so they got fed.
I never wanted to be a bother. I lived on hand me downs, left overs and cast offs. When something upset me, I’d cry and I’d cry a lot. I’m a sensitive soul. I wasn’t thought of as sensitive. I was seen as manipulative. My dad would get mad and accuse me of crying to get my way. Truth be told. I cried because I knew I wasn’t going to get what I wanted. I learned to shut up and settle for what I got.
I admired my siblings when they had no fear or shame in asking for and in some cases, demanding something. Most of the time they got it.
Now, I bring this up because I had an intense conversation with a friend the other night. She’s an only child and an unwanted one at that. How sad to grow up feeling like you’re a burdensome bother. Having a narcissistic, passive aggressive mother is rough. But, we’ll bypass all the psychological warfare and get to the point.
She and I have a very hard time asking for what we want. We’ve settled for so long, in relationships, jobs, and living arrangements. We don’t even know what the fuck we want anymore.
I’m hindered by this terrible feeling that I’m not worthy. I start a project with high hopes. Then, that nasty little voice whispers to me. “You’re competing against a tidal wave of artists. You’re not that good.” “Why bother making(Fill in the blank)? So many other people are making the same thing.” “Why ask for help? Other people are worse off than you. How selfish!”
My friend and I are both artists, shamans and bodyworkers. We KNOW we have issues and we’re trying to fix them as best we can. We’re both, struggling financially and need a creative, second income. We’ve decided to help each other by encouragement. Loving, nurturing and kind. Not the hateful, bullying, sadistic “encouragement” I received from Sister Agnes in Jr. High. My dad loved that monstrous, bitter nun. “She sees so much potential in you. She’s just trying to bring it out.” I call BULLSHIT!! This sadistic beast tried to crush me, and failed. It’s always good to know your feelings are dismissed out of convenience. I attempted suicide because of Sister Agnes. No one noticed I had passed out for half a day. When I told my mom what happened, she went nuts. Not because her daughter was so distraught she wanted to die. She was more worried what people might think if I had succeeded. Thanks, mom. This is why I have such a hard time asking for help. I learned that it never comes.
So, I try to cultivate friends who understand the creative and sensitive soul. Who encourage and support me as I encourage and support them. We need to stick together in this crazy world.
To learn how to ask for what I want. I must first know what I want. I’ve spent the last, 21 years focusing on my son’s well being. Now I’m free to focus on my own needs and I’m at a loss. I have to learn to be a bit selfish and not be guilty about it. I want to create art and groovy, personal care products without fear of failing. I want to live simply and comfortably. I want to make a living helping people. I want to be treated like a whole person and not just a needs fulfilling device. I want to travel and see beautiful and strange things in person. I want to meet people who share my values and don’t want to take advantage of me. I want the world to wake the fuck up and stop being so hateful and destructive.
I want to sell my art! I need to make room for more creations.
I want to stop being invisible and unheard.