“He’s not conscious, what do I do?” <– Is this question on your mind? What the heck do we do with the relationship when we’ve done allllll this personal growth work and our husband is just lagging behind in unconscious-ville, all up in his ego? He’s not parenting like we are, he’s not even on the same page as we are. The relationship is doomed, right? No! At least, not always.
The problem with some YouTube gurus’ teachings is that, while they fully get the psychology piece (inner child, patterns, deconstruction), and part of the spirituality piece (mindfulness, meditation), they stop short of the relationship piece.
This is great if all you want to do is end your own suffering. It’s great if you want to be authentic and not project your own pain. In fact, my own book (The Authentic Wife: Uncaging Yourself Through Marriage) stops short of the true relationship piece, as that’s where I was in life when I ended it (fear not! I’m about to write the sequel). The problem is that we are a part of the life school, and relationships are how we TRULY grow. Even the term ‘conscious’ means without separation. We are all one, therefore loving each other and helping each other to grow is part of our purpose from birth.
The confusion lies in what a relationship is. It’s usually mistaken with dependency and emotional enmeshment.
I came up with this super weird cake analogy last week when working with a client to try to explain emotional enmeshment, see if it helps you:
Imagine that you and your husband, right now, are both ingredients in a cake mix. You’re both still swirling around in this pan that’s really too small for the both of you, waiting for that SOMEDAY when you’ll together form this delicious perfect cake–maybe like the one you thought you formed in your early years together, or that amazingly delicious one you saw on Food Network and have always dreamed about. You are waiting on the other person to get their sugar together so you can FINALLY be whole. Your happiness depends on them not screwing up your ooey gooey goodness. <–This is emotional enmeshment/dependency, aka 95% of relationships today. (I also totally made up that number. It’s probably MUCH higher!)
When you become more conscious, you are working on leaving that pan behind and fitting into your own pan. You realize you are totally whole all on your own. You keep doing the work to bake your cake (heal any past wounds, raise your inner child into a healthy adult self, and shed limiting beliefs/conditioning) and it’s like, totally frustrating that your husband is down there still all immature and un-cake-like on his own. It’s like he refuses to bake himself.
This is the point where most spiritual teaching, and even some of my beloved mentors, stop. Getting to this point is hella hard work, but it’s not the WHOLE story.
Yes, you can be authentic, independent, unattached, and unenmeshed, and you DO want to be. The problem is, that you are a single damn cake layer all on your own. Tasty and delicious, but you can’t serve that many people. Maybe like 48-96 people. I totally just googled ‘how many people can a single cake layer serve.‘ So there you are, evolved out of moldable ingredients into this beautiful cake, not needin’ no man to make you any sweeter than you already are.
So what becomes of him? Well, if you’ve totally left that life behind, then he has two choices: bake himself into his own cake, or put up a Pan for Rent sign.
And what do you need to do?
Let’s say that he doesn’t cop out, and he decides to start baking his own cake and join you in this place of wholeness. After all, once upon a time he did choose you to be his wife and he probably doesn’t want to disrupt his or his kids lives as much as you don’t want to do the same. Do you know what’s going to get him there? Kindness. Specifically, the energy of loving kindness. The same loving energy you’ve been (hopefully) giving yourself which led to your awakening in the first place. To be conscious on this earth school, you realize there is no separation between you and others, because you are all connected by energy (there’s frosting between you and every other cake out there that elevates you). And reverence for all life means kindness to all life. Seeing others as a mirror for our growth also means acknowledging that they are asking to be loved in the same way we love ourselves.
In short, only love heals. Love and honoring of your worth, and love and honoring of his worth.
It is not as inspiring to just be a whole cake on your own as it is to maintain a relationship with him through your energy, which manifests in our world mostly as communication. This is the frosting between you and him (and everyone else):
C – Couple
A – Awakening
K – Kindness
E – Energy
That frosting holding you together is the energy of the relationship. You both have to want it there and then create it through communication, through loving empathy, through helping him understand how to support you, and him helping you to understand how to best support him.
You have to let each other know what’s going on from the perspective of your own cakes. It can’t look like playing the role of hero, villain, or victim. Just like a branch has to tell the rest of the tree what it needs to grow, you both have to tell each other what’s going on in your world and be willing to call out (gently) when one of you has room for growth. And the energy of that relationship has to be love, or you’ve got no frosting. Only love heals, only love elevates, and only love leads to consciousness. But we’re not talking about enmeshed, dependent, attachment “love,” we’re talking the actual frequency and vibration of love that can universally be felt and even measured by the right equipment. Love is the frequency, or channel, of communication. Communication is a balance of giving and receiving and you can’t do both from a place other than love. You can not give or receive if fear is present in even the sneakiest forms. Love is honoring your worth and honoring the worth of the other.
My world changed when I finally realized this (thanks, Gary Zukav!). Prior to this point, it felt like such a major burden to love other adults. I didn’t view them as sweet and innocent like I viewed children. I thought they were like those fat-free SnackWell cakes from the ’90s, all fake and deceptive. I had no empathy or patience for them. The truth is that there was still a part of me judging myself harshly and still afraid to trust myself, which meant that I was also projecting that judgment and distrust onto others. I still wasn’t able to vulnerably open up and receive my own love, so I still wasn’t able to hold space (provide empathy) for others. For so long I wanted to help people to grow, not realizing that all they need for growth is real empathy without judgment when they’re upset. I could never communicate how I was feeling because I was too busy judging them for whatever they did that “made” me feel annoyed.
The frosting IS the magic. Without it there’s no conduit to teach, no channel on which to hear the lesson, no support and connection to self and all others.
If you feel so alone in this awakening journey, then it means it’s time to tap into love and bring others along with you. The more, the merrier, right?
If you want to get to Jesus-level enlightenment, then it’s going to require seeing everyone as a thread in your own tapestry and loving them without conditions as they journey down their own path. Remember the view from their cake is not the same as yours and love requires UNDERSTANDING their view rather than teaching them about yours.
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- 35: Helping Kids Manage Their Big Emotions - January 29, 2023