The Final Screams of the Codependent Rescuer.
I am finally taking away my drug of choice, no more trying to fix other people. Done. Finished. No more hiding. It’s time to face the truth.
Withdrawals. Sweating. Shaking. Aching. My heart and all the rest of me hurts like never before.
Darkness seeping from my every pore. Moving into the pain. It’s thick in here. Sticky, deep, dank, stuck for my entire life stuff as I wade through up to my neck, suffocating, barely able to breathe, gasping for air, worried I might drown in the thick, stinky muck of all my years unaddressed, worried I might not make it out alive. Not caring at times anymore if I do or if I don’t. I’ve had enough pain.
No one deserves to hurt like this.
My desperate, injured inner child’s voice finally returned, maybe for the first time ever. She begs and weeps in desperation.
No one sees me.
No one hears me.
I am voiceless and invisible.
Why can’t you see me?
Why can’t you hear me?
I’m so forgettable.
Come here, let me fix your eyes.
Come here, let me fix your ears.
Let me fix you so you can see me.
Let me fix you so you can hear me.
Let me fix you so you can love me.
If you love me, if someone loves me, sees me, hears me,
finally sees my pain, then maybe, finally, someone will care enough to want to fix me too.
The end of yet another relationship, ah yes, excruciating pain, the gift of darkness that cannot be denied.
How much longer are you going to hurt yourself? When will you be truly fed up enough with your own shit to stop the madness? You knew better. You saw the signs. You knew it would end up here.
This end could not be denied. It brought me to my knees, it brought me to a darkness I didn’t even know existed, as I stared down his depression, ultimately coming face to face with my own. What? Depression? I’m not depressed. I haven’t been depressed in years.
Denial. This will hurt. I can’t. No more. Not me.
I knew I was still healing. I knew I was picking better men. No longer picking pathological liars, psychopaths or finding out they were married, I really thought it was just a learning curve and I would keep picking better every time until I ultimately found him, my one, my only, my last that I’ve waited my whole life to find.
I honestly, never in a million years, expected to find me, the true me, the me I’d never seen, heard or acknowledged, hiding behind him and every man before him.
We surely have some nerve thinking we are healed, or at the very least, well on our way. Want to make the Universe laugh right in your face? Forget why you are here on this Earth School, forget that the inner healing journey is each and every one of our missions in life.
Yes, I forgot for a moment. I thought I was helping. This one asked for my help. I wasn’t infringing this time, impeding, or overstepping boundaries. This man asked for my help. He invited me into his pain and asked me to show him how to bring in the light. Nothing dysfunctional about that.
I am no longer a rescuer, I am just a good, kind, loving soul helping another good, kind, loving soul to find their way, sharing the path I’ve already taken and helping another find the light. There is absolutely nothing codependent about that.
The Universe laughs yet again.
I didn’t expect this pain. It took me a while to surrender to her, to welcome her. She was a visitor I did not anticipate this time around. I long ago healed this piece of me. There is nothing to heal here. I just need more patience and faith.
I can hear a faint giggle off in the distance.
It hurts, it hurts so much. Why does it hurt so much this time? Why won’t I acknowledge it? Why can’t I surrender to it? Why am I fighting it? Why can’t I move into it?
A deep breath.
You’ve waited your whole life for this one. It’s what you prayed for. Pain is answered prayers. Lean in. Embrace.
I always thought I was a codependent rescuer because I was a person who was too nice without enough boundaries, willing to give myself up, to lose myself, helping another. How giving, how kind, how altruistic, I am!
The realization of being a rescuer to fix someone who I hope will ultimately heal and finally come save me in return, I never saw that truth. It hit me very hard. Completely blindsided, I didn’t see it coming. Almost 48 years old, and I always thought it was a selfless act. I always thought that my anger in the end was for them not appreciating me, not being truly grateful for all I’d done to help them.
This was the first time I ever heard my own screams at the end, finally the truth when it was over. Why won’t you heal so you can come save me? Damn it, what is wrong with you? Damn it, why can’t you see what is wrong with me? Please, please come save me. It’s my turn. I am worthy.
Somebody, anybody, save me.
Christie Del Vesco is a College Administrator and Professor, a Universalist Minister, a member of the RAINN (Rape, Abuse, & Incest National Network) Speakers Bureau and single mom. She’s a children’s advocate, a survivor of many forms of sexual violence, and a voice for the survivors who have yet to find their own. Chris is a firm believer that we go through what we do, to help others when they go through the same. She also believes if we would all just “be the change,” we can change the world.