The Childhood Itch
Many of us have adult behaviors and "quirks" that we cannot explain; consistencies that are confusing and maybe even frustrating. We go back to abusive relationships, end up with the same boss at a different company, or react a certain way in specific scenarios and don't know how to explain the phenomenon (phenomenon: a fact or situation that is observed to exist or happen, especially one whose cause or explanation is in question). Sometimes we're downright baffled by these reoccurrences because "it felt different this time". RIGHT?!
I have spoken of neural pathways in previous posts. I have also explained that these neural pathways begin developing as early as our development in the womb. There are theories based on cellular memory that suggest that some of these neural pathways are passed down to us via our genetic lineage. Every experience that we have is placed into a subconsious database and as some situations are re-experienced that piece of data is strengthened, as is the route to which our central nervous system, endocrine system and autonomic nervous system respond to said stimulus. The more often the same experience occurs the stronger the data becomes and the more preferred the corresponding pathway will thusly be.
We have this preposterous idea that when we hit a certain age we cease to be children; that our childish ways are behind us and we have matured into making better decisions and choosing different paths. The truth of the matter is that we respond to our current life's stimuli the same exact way that we did as children... why? Because our brain knows nothing but neural pathways, behavior patterns, and feedback loops (i.e. Insert experience A, respond with correspnding behavior pattern B).
What does this mean for my confusing relationship patterns? Why in the fuck do I keep going back to the same situation that I know is bad for me?
Time to unlock your childhood. How were you treated as a child? What was your upbringing like? Tell me about your school atmosphere? How did other kids treat you? Was your home life chaotic? Stifled? Inconsistent? These questions can go well into our infancy and your mother's pregnancy. Based on the theory of cellular memory it it also possible that some of my current patterns came from mutations in the cellular DNA of my ancestors. It is PROBABLE that the questions are, at some point, unanswerable.
What I can tell you is this... your current behavior patterns may be used in reverse to unlock the dark basement of your childhood. Become aware of the things that you continue to do "instinctually" on a mental, physical, AND emotional plane NOW. I speak for myself when I say that my current lifestyle, from my eating habits to my relationships, satisfies, to some extent, an internal childhood itch or a neural pathway that was developed WAY before I had a choice in the matter. When we satisfy these pathways we have a chemical bodily response which further attaches us to them (feedback loops). When the pathway goes undisturbed the yummy chemicals release (dopamine, serotonin, adrenaline) and we are given a sense that we are home under the security blanket again even IF/WHEN the surrounding circumstances are complete and utter hell and chaos, even IF/WHEN we know conceptually that what we have gotten ourselves into is WRONG, everything internally tells us something different. You know the feeling of being right, of winning an argument, or of being validated? THAT, that is what happens in the mind and body when our childhood neural pathways are ridden... like a dog being scratched behind the ears...
So what do we do?
We seek to understand. Or become willing to seek. Or become willing to become willing... Open the door just a crack and let some air out. If my car breaks down and I know nothing about cars I either seek help or remain fucked. So maybe start talking. I KNOW I KNOW I KNOW... you don't need anyone... you're strong and independent... ok fine... stay fucked... it's a respectable and understandable choice. OWN IT! It's no one else's but yours... ownership can be freeing as well... so take it.
If you decide to take the harder path then commit to working it daily. If it's true that some of these behaviors can be traced into our ancestry then we have some fucking work to do. See the pattern. Acknowledge the pattern. Struggle with the pattern. See it again. Acknowledge it. See it. See it. Honor it. EVENTUALLY see it COMING and fucking duck. Duck again... and again... and again. Dodge that mother fucker like your life depends on it. Do THAT until it is the preferred pathway. Then move onto the next behavior. LATHER, RINSE, REPEAT. Avoid blaming the outcome on past experiences. Take responsibility for your actions, OWN who you are. If something needs to change it's on you to ALSO take responsibility for the process. It is no one else's but YOURS!!! And always remember that staying the same and blaming the world is the EASY road... by doing the hard shit now you are physically altering your DNA and setting up a GENETIC framework for later generations so that your children or grandchildren won't have to struggle the same way you have.
"Be the change you want to see in the world."