I was raised knowing that I was responsible to ease God’s suffering and that any doubt in my mind or heart, any time I selfishly thought of myself first…or at all, any misstep or misaction I took would break God’s heart.

While I now know that that is ludicrous – that I am or was, indeed, responsible for God’s emotional well-being – it was deeply carved into me as fact, and it can still affect pretty much my every waking thought, emotion, and deed. My every waking moment.

So, to counteract that false truth which was forced upon and into me, I have learned – or at least I am trying to learn – that I am, in fact, not responsible for anything. Or for anything other than myself.

I know that may sound radical to at least some of you, but when you are fanatically constrained – when you are not allowed to be or to be yourself AT ALL, when you are given lies to keep you mentally captive – a radical stance is needed to counteract the damage that was done to your ability to think, feel, and, well, be.

Now, don’t get me wrong. I am – happily – a spouse, partner, friend, parent, child, family member, community member, etc., and I – happily – consider other people and their wants, needs, and situations. I live to Love With All My Heart, and in order to do that, I have to care about others. A lot. I am Danny’s (my father) primary caregiver, and that takes a whole helluva lot of caring about other’s needs. (Especially now, as I think he’s nearing death, and I am kicked into all the responsibility that actually entails…)

But I’m trying to learn – to take to heart – that I am not responsible for other people and how they feel or what they do. I am not responsible for making sure they’re fine, or happy, or anything. I can and will, again, take their wants and needs into consideration, but it’s not my job to fix anything for anyone. I’m actually not in charge. I don’t have full accountability for anything…other than me. (Especially since my kids are grown or nearly grown.)

I can’t, in fact, break God’s heart.

I don’t even realize how quickly I fall into this. I don’t fully grasp how caught my brain and heart can be. I know that as I even think “I’m not responsible for anything” to myself, I can feel my being reject this idea. I feel the visceral terror course through me, fighting my fight to care for myself. I feel my compulsion to fix, do, take care of, be perfect, save the world, sacrifice, deny myself…well, you get the idea.

That is, in fact, how I REALLY know it’s true. If my brain and body reject a notion that counteracts the control the cult had on me, I know I’m onto something. Something I have to hold onto. Something I have to believe. Something I have to make my new way of life.

I’m not responsible for anything…except maybe finding joy and spreading joy and love…With All My Heart.

I’d love to hear your thoughts, and please share this post with others if it resonates with you!

Photo by Ben White on unsplash

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