I’ve been reviewing stories, and honestly, trying to avoid the following chapter, but it’s the one that really stands out to me for being in my fully present in my mind/body…
In my early years or dating –still defining who I was and what I what in a relationship– I was with “The Asshole” (I really have a hard time recalling his name now!) for a year and a half. I felt connected to this guy, as we shared a sentiment of disconnect from our families. While he made me laugh, and could be sweet, he carried an arrogance about him, that I was ‘lucky to be with him.’ This air came out in ways he talked with me and behaved around me –mostly only when other people were around– and I often felt belittled and insignificant.
Our relationship happened in the mid 90s, when gangster rap was in its prime, and this W.A.S.B. (White Anglo Suburban Boy) was a big fan. As he had the music pounding one day in my half of the house (he lived in the upper apartment), he was doing his ‘I’m a tough guy’ dance moves in my face while I sat in the lounge chair. Having had my fill of the emotional abuse and disrespect, I pushed him away with my feet. He came back and shoved my shoulders. Next thing I knew, we were scuffling with shouts, shoves, and slaps, for 5 minutes or so, until our friend came down from upstairs and pulled him away.
While I abhor violence, after he left, my lips were smiling and my body was tingling as my heart was racing with relief. It felt I finally got to express all the emotional hurt he had been burying me in. The experience was whole body gratifying, not because I made it an opportunity to hurt him ‘back,’ but rather that I got all the hurt out of my body; all the nooks and crannies of my joints and my muscles and my lungs and my physical heart was cleansed.
And it seemed to open his eyes up to the notion that I am a strong woman, who has boundaries on her compassion.
–Mizz Bitz, Boulder, 42