Wednesday, July 20, 2016

This Too Shall Pass...

"Way over yonder
Is a place that I know
Where I can find shelter 
From a hunger and cold
And the sweet tastin' good life
Is so easily found
A way over yonder, that's where I'm bound..."
~~ "Way Over Yonder" Carole King

Readers, I offer my sincerest apologies for yet another long hiatus. As I mentioned in my previous post, life has a way of throwing us curveballs that, all too frequently, cause us to lose balance and fall... The key is to pick one's self back up and keep going.

And I will be the first to say I am struggling. 

As Milarepa, the Tibetan yogi and poet, once said,

"When you are strong and healthy,
You never think of sickness coming,
But it descends with sudden force,
Like a stroke of lightening.

When involved in worldly things,
You never think of death's approach' 
Quick it comes like thunder
Crashing round your head..."

At the behest of a dear friend, I have finally realized I am at a point where I need to share part of my story in the hope that it may help others who are struggling with the death of a loved one -- be they a spouse, child, parent, or friend.

My mother recently passed away. And though it was expected, it wasn't expected quite so quickly.

In the early 2004, my mother was diagnosed with congestive heart failure. After seven bypasses and a valve replacement she did wonderful. No problems. In 2011, she had a major pulmonary edema that landed her in the ICU for several days, but she rebounded and went on to continue working and living the life she loved for several more years.

At the last, we were fortunate if she went two weeks without water buildup that would inevitably land her in the hospital. And despite the repeated hospital visits and stays, she continued to work. She worked all the way up to the day before her last hospital admission.

After years of water pills, her kidneys took a severe hit. Function was compromised and it sent her into kidney failure. It was the proverbial robbing Peter to pay Paul --- treat the lungs and hurt the kidneys or treat the kidneys and hurt the lungs.

Due to extensive fluid buildup and her body's inability to rid itself of the water, she suffered a severe pulmonary edema that forced the doctors to intubate her. She stayed on a ventilator five days. When the doctors removed the intubation tube, she lasted almost 30 minutes before her lungs began to fill again. 

As I sat at her bedside I knew something wasn't right. She was delirious. The doctor stated she was in what is called Sundowning -- a form of delirium caused from the combination of drugs she'd been on while intubated. He assured me that if she didn't have it prior to the intubation, she would come out of it. 

It ripped my heart out to see this refined, classy lady who raised me to speak of watching corn fall off the walls, petting dogs that weren't there, laughing maniacally at some joke only she knew, or experiencing sheer terror at the sight of shadow figures and people out in the hall who she thought were coming to get her. Then the pendulum swung the other way and she began lashing out. I tried not to take anything she said to heart b/c I knew it was the drugs. And then she sat straight up in bed and I heard that foreboding gurgle. I ran for the nurse and when I returned she was coding. I will never forget the look of sheer terror in her eyes.

I looked at her and said, "Hang on, mom... You're gonna be OK." To which she nodded, but we both knew deep down that wasn't the case. It was the beginning of the end.

She ALWAYS had a paralyzing fear of drowning. And at that moment she was drowning. The doctors looked at me and said, "She's coding. What do you want us to do." I was NOT going to stand by and watch my mother die like that. 

I said the only word that came to mind, "Intubate!" 

And so they did. But this time there was a caveat. A decision had to be made b/c she could not stay on the ventilator. And once she was taken off of it, there was nothing the doctors could do. Three days later, she was moved to Hospice.

For nearly two weeks I kept nearly constant vigil at mom's bedside. On the 13th day, that foreboding gurgle returned. She was looking right at me unable to speak. After three hours, she took her last breath. 

She was never one to talk about death. Like most of us, she didn't want to think about it. Period. 

But as my faith has taught me, death is part of the natural cycle of things. Without death there can be no life. 

As I watched my mother going through the death process it made me realize a lot of things. To watch it up close and personal happening to someone who you have been so close to, it really makes you reexamine those things that are most important to you... and I'm not talking about material things. 

In the weeks leading up to my mother's passing, she knew she was dying -- she just wouldn't vocalize it. I think part of it was to protect me. To try and stay upbeat that all would be OK, like she always told me. 

She begged and begged to see her brother who had recently had a stroke. I reached out to family to try and get them to bring him to see her. But was met with false promises and abuse. Each day mom would ask if he was coming to see her and the best I could do was to say, "I'm working on it, mom... I'm trying." She'd say, "I know you are, Precious." 

It is heartbreaking to know that as she lay on her deathbed, the one request she had couldn't be fulfilled b/c others were too busy with their lives. It brought home the reality that some people really don't give much thought or consideration to others until it hits them personally. I feel for those types of people. I hope they one day are able to find it in their hearts to practice what they supposedly preach and actually be there for those they say they love and care about. 

Everyone tells me how brave I was to fly (essentially) solo through to the end. I am blessed with a TREMENDOUS and LOVING group of friends (I call them my Framily) who stepped up and helped in every way they could. And the morning she passed, they were there by my side.

His Holiness the Dalai Lama once said, 

"Our prime purpose in life is to help others.
And if you can't help them, at least don't hurt them."

That was the way mom lived her life, as do I. And as they've proven, my friends live by the same creed. 

If mom's death has taught me anything it is that life is VERY short. To get distracted with the cravings of this world is a mistake. Family, friends, compassion and love are what matter the most. 

And so now, as I hobble my way through the grieving process, I have found it has made me embrace my faith all  the more. Regardless of your religious affiliation, I believe that all agree that death is something that makes everyone take a closer look at their own lives and how they live them. 

For those who have recently suffered a loss, I understand the void you feel. I understand the heartache and loneliness. The silence. The pain. 

There is a fable that states a Persian king once asked his advisers to bring him something that would make him sad when he was happy and happy when he was sad. He was given a ring with an inscription that said, "This too shall pass..."

His Holiness the Dalai Lama once said the best way to honor the memory those who we have lost is to move forward and continue on doing what they would want us to do. To live life to its fullest. To show compassion. To demonstrate love for all of humanity. To no harbor ill-will or anger.

I know mom is with me. I pray. I meditate. I offer thanks for the time I had with her. And I intend to honor her memory by being the strong, independent woman she raised me to be. I will celebrate her life and take refuge in knowing she is no longer hurting. She has found peace. And with that peace, a love that none of us could even fathom on this earthly plane.

As the main tenet of Buddhism, impermanence lies at the heart of all we experience on this earth. And as much pain as one feels following the death of a loved one, time heals. This too shall pass...

In Peace and Love,
Namaste <3

Saturday, May 21, 2016

Loving Kindness...


Prayer of the Loving Kindness (Metta Bhavana) Practice
May I be free from fear. May I be free from suffering.
May I be happy. May I be filled with Loving Kindness.
May you be free from fear. May you be free from suffering.
May you be happy. May you be filled with Loving Kindness.
May all people everywhere be happy and filled with Loving Kindness.

Dear readers...

I apologize for the hiatus over the past few weeks. It always seems that when we find a groove, life has a way of setting us adrift sideways... but only momentarily. With grounding and strength, may we not be swayed from our purpose and find peace regardless of the storms that gather around us.

I am revamping this space to be more inclusive of those issues that affect not only Survivors of DV, but anyone who finds that life is sometimes a bit too much to handle -- while adding a bit of Buddhist wisdom along the way.

Regular posts will return in the coming days. But, for now, I offer the prayer of Loving Kindness above. May it help you, as it has helped me, to keep focus and realize we are much greater beings than we realize. And that we are One.

In Peace and Love,
Namaste <3


Thursday, April 21, 2016

Love-less...

"Oh, I really should have known
By the time you drove me home
By the vagueness in your eyes, your casual goodbyes,
By the chill in your embrace
The expression on your face that told me
Maybe you might have some advice to give
On how to be insensitive..."
~~ Jann Arden, "Insensitive"

*** TRIGGER WARNING ***

Family and friends, and anyone else on the outside looking in, oftentimes do NOT understand the dynamics of an abusive relationship. The most common reaction from outsiders is to say, "Why don't you just leave?" or, even worse, "Get out, get over it and move on." 

Those who have never experienced narc abuse/domestic violence simply don't have the perspective to appreciate the gravity and danger of the situation. It is imperative one remembers that the narc is a charismatic chameleon. 

What outsiders see holds NO resemblance to the beast that lives behind closed doors.

It is difficult to explain how it is simply NOT an option to leave and Get Over It. The victim believes he/she CAN change the situation -- but the narc keeps upping the ante. It is a never ending battle. And the intermittent acts of kindness and sweetness the narc offers are enough to keep the victim holding out hope for a happy ending. 

Narcs say they want love. But, by definition, what they consider "love" doesn't even remotely resemble the real thing... Like what normal people seek. 


"... I want love, just a different kind,
I want love, won't break me down
Won't brick me up, won't fence me in
I want a love that don't mean a thing
That's the love I want...
I want love on my own terms..."
~~ Elton John, "I Want Love"

The MAIN flag, though I didn't recognize it at the time, was all the women -- "friends" he called them. Now, I have ALWAYS gotten along better with men than women, so the vast majority of my friends are male -- so, I didn't think too much of it. 

When the honeymoon was over, if I didn't answer when he called, text or spend time with him (b/c I had to work) he IMMEDIATELY took that as a Green Light to have a booty call. And it wasn't my booty he was calling. 

I would have NEVER found out had he not slipped up.

While on lunch break one day, I received a text from a woman I didn't know. Attached was a picture of her in bed with him. The taunting message ranted about what a prick he was for not returning her phone calls and texts and to make me aware of what an asshole he was. 

You know that Gut instinct you have? NEVER ignore it. I had an inkling for quite some time something wasn't right, but I thought I was just imagining it. After all, he "loved" me and would never hurt me. 

From that day forward, Trust was shattered. And lying among the razor-sharp shards of what remained were the seeds from which the Beast would grow. 

Narcs are notorious for their infidelity. But the way they make you feel in the beginning, it is easy to believe that you are DIFFERENT. He certainly had me believing this. The "indiscretion" he had was simply a moment of "weakness" and he wouldn't have done it had I paid him more attention. And at the time, I believed his shit. 

So I worked harder. Loved harder. But it didn't matter. He developed a perma-smirk -- amused with my efforts KNOWING it was all in vain.

You eventually get to a point where you can't take it. So you leave. But before you know it, you are sucked back into the belly of the Beast. And those around you don't understand. They lose patience. They express their frustration. And finally they shake their heads and give up. So, you return to the only one you think understands you -- the narc. 

Looking back I should have left after the first red flag flew. But I was brainwashed, blind. I wanted so desperately to believe things weren't as bad as they seemed.

It was only when he had me by the throat throttling me, and I saw the black void in his eyes, that I KNEW I was no longer dealing with the person I had fallen in love with. 

It was an illusion. He didn't care. He didn't love me. I was a pawn. I was a toy. I was an excuse. I was Nothing. 

Friends and family of a victim of domestic abuse need to educate themselves about the cycle of abuse to fully understand the dynamic of what's going on.

I was undergoing a significant change. I was no longer the fun-loving carefree woman I once was. The bad part was, I thought I was holding it together and no one knew. I'd smile and try to be casual about things as though they were fine, but they were anything but.

I was dying inside.

Victims of abuse exhibit Tell-Tale signs in their behavior and personality that need to be heeded. We don't come out and say, "I need help" b/c that is the furthest thing from our minds. We feel like we've got this. But in reality, we don't. We are simply trying to survive and change a situation that, little did we realize, was doomed from the beginning.

Signs of domestic abuse can include:

~~ Isolation ~~ The victim no longer has a social life. He/she falls off the radar b/c they are too wrapped up in their abuser. Remember, the abuser controls ALL communication coming in and going out of the relationship. Isolating their victim from any potential "threats" that may blow their cover is the first preemptive strike.  

~~ Personality changes ~~ Individuals who were once known to be outgoing become increasingly introverted and quiet. They may no longer return calls or texts. Excuses abound as to why they can no longer attend social gatherings or lunch/dinner dates with friends. Oftentimes, he/she becomes depressed, which only adds to the struggle to survive.

~~ Physical changes ~~ Victims of abuse often deteriorate in ways that become increasingly noticeable. He/she may lose weight (or gain weight) due to the stress of the situation. The person may start to look haggard and more stressed out. 

~~ Appearance ~~ Similar to the lengths an addict will go to in order to conceal physical signs of their drug use, a victim of  domestic abuse that has become physically violent will adopt a similar strategy. He/she may wear long sleeves or pants to cover their bruises -- even in summer. Women will oftentimes wear more make-up than usual in an effort to cover blackened eyes or bruises to visible areas that cannot be covered with clothing or a scarf. If a bruise or injury is spotted, we are at the ready with a "plausible" excuse --- to protect the abuser AND ourselves from the abuser lest he/she should think we have reached out for help or "told on them"... Which can only initiate further, worse abuse. What makes this aspect even worse, is the victim BELIEVES he/she deserved it.

~~ Mannerisms ~~ As was the case with me, I became very jumpy. I was no longer wont to giving hugs freely. I jumped at the least little noise. And if someone approached me or reached for me too quickly I would shrink back to avoid their touch -- something so casual as a hand on the shoulder or a tussling of my hair. Eye contact became nonexistent. 

~~ Interference ~~ The abuser often takes it upon him-/herself to run interference when loved ones and friends try to contact the victim. The narc may answer the victim's phone or texts so he/she can keep a finger on the pulse of the situation. When in public with the abuser, the victim will often keep eyes cast down or refer all conversation to the abuser who is more than willing to interact in social settings as long as he/she remains in control.

It is essential that if you believe a friend or loved one is in an unhealthy situation that you approach him/her in a nonjudgmental way. I know it is difficult, actually impossible, to relate if you've never walked in the abused's shoes.

Leaving an abusive relationship is something that must be done on the victim's terms. Only he/she knows when it's time to get out. HOWEVER, there ARE situations where that time never comes. But I pray that those who are trapped in the storm eventually see their way to make it to the opposite shore.

With time, he/she will see the situation more objectively and, with it, the patterns. Education is KEY.

Once the fog lifted and I was able to see him for what he was and the situation as a whole, I knew I couldn't go back. NOTHING I would say or do could mend the damage or change the situation. I had to survive. I had to move forward. And as terrifying as it was, I had the support necessary to maintain NC and begin to heal.

To this day, I'm still healing. I live with PTSD triggers and anxiety day in and day out. The good days are beginning to outnumber the bad ones, but they still raise their ugly head now and again.

There is no excuse for a narc's behavior. Their wiring is wonky.

But your wiring, Dear, is NOT wonky. You are NOT broken. You are NOT damaged. You have just endured a horrific situation. Punches don't have to be thrown to give you scars. I always said I would have rather he just hit me repeatedly without saying a word -- not even an apology b/c I know it wouldn't be sincere. Bruises fade. But the venom with which the narc speaks breaks you down and leaves VERY deep scars that take a long time to heal.

Sadly, I don't think the scars ever really go away, they simply fade. But they DO make us stronger. And with that strength comes a tremendous beauty with which we build a new life steeped in Truth, Love and Light.

In Peace and Love,
Namaste <3

Monday, April 18, 2016

Lotus Flower...


 "You held me down, but I got up,
Already brushing off the dust
You hear my voice, you hear that sound,
Like thunder, gonna shake the ground.
You held me down, but I got up,
Get ready 'cause I've had enough,
I see it all, I see it now..."
~~ Katy Perry, "Roar"

As Thich Nhat Hanh wrote, "No mud, no lotus."

Without suffering, there is no growth. Without hurt and struggle, there cannot be beauty. 

When recovering from an abusive relationship, you mourn twice -- for the loss of who you thought was your Soul Mate and the relationship itself.

But through the struggle of grief, we become stronger. It hurts like Hell in the beginning, but believe me, as the hurt begins to wane the ability to breathe freely returns -- and with it an empowerment and strength that cannot be rivaled. 

Initially you struggle with questions that, to the outsider, sound anything but sane given the situation They see.

"Why did I put up with his/her bullshit for so long?"
"Why do I still miss him/her?"
"Why can't I forget it all?"
"Why do I hurt so bad and will it go away?"

And on and on it goes for a while.

But eventually, as the clouds clear you see the sun shine down and with it Truth, Love and Light. It's a whole new World. And it is Amazing.

As you meander through the process of healing, you WILL bounce back and forth. You WILL struggle... It's natural. 

Here are a few methods you can use to help ease you through the hurt and pain.

~~ Feel Your Pain... Fully ~~ It is essential you allow yourself to feel the range of emotions FULLY. Yes, the person you fell for was a Fraud. Yes, the relationship WAS abusive. But you are here now. Get angry. Be frustrated. Hurt. See each of these emotions for what they are and allow them to come and go without attaching to them. Remember, EVERYTHING is impermanent -- this includes the hurt and agony you're experiencing. DON'T get Stuck. If you are feeling too overwhelmed, seek help from a trusted friend, family member or professional counselor. I know that counseling and a tremendous support system saved my life. There is no shame in reaching out for help. You are not a superhero.

~~ NO Contact ~~ Establish NO CONTACT and MAINTAIN it. It is impossible to heal from the abuse when you leave the door open even a crack. Leave it all behind. There is no healthy future when you leave one foot in the past. Narcs DO NOT change. Holding out hope for a redemption of any kind will only prove detrimental to YOU in the long run.

~~ Educate Yourself ~~ Learn about narcissistic personality disorder and the cycle of abuse. Now this doesn't mean you submerge yourself in a sea of NPD obsession. But it is essential to familiarize yourself with the terminology and pathology of behaviors so you can avoid falling for the same illusion again. The better you understand the signs, the easier it is to avoid in the future.

~~ Ground Yourself ~~ Narcissistic abuse IS Trauma, period. The sooner you are able to come to terms with the reality of your situation the better. The key is to NOT get caught up in the same cycle of doubt, longing, and self-blame. You MUST make the decision to move Forward WITHOUT looking back and dipping your toes in the "What Ifs." Learning self-soothing strategies, such as positive self-talk, deep breathing, and engaging in self-care are essential to healing. It is time to take care of YOU. (I will cover some self-care techniques in an upcoming post.) 

~~ Improve Your Self-Esteem ~~ Narcs leave their victims shattered. There is no recognizable sense of self when the dust settles. It is imperative you take the time to look at yourself in the mirror and see the beautiful human being you truly are -- and that includes recognizing the scars, both seen and unseen. Our scars are our badges of honor. We are Survivors. Take this experience and those scars as proof you are stronger than you have ever given yourself credit to be... And build on that. 

~~ New Routine ~~ Now is the time to establish the self and life you have always dreamed of being/having. Embrace the possibilities today and the future hold for you. There is NO ONE who can take those from you unless you allow it. And if you are reading this, then you are at the crossroads where you know you've a decision to make. Take charge of your life. Explore all the opportunities that lay before you. Maybe that means something so simple as reinventing yourself or embarking on a new career path. Take up hobbies and interests you were never able to before. Take advantage of the hope, love and life that is before you. 

You ARE like the lotus flower. All that ickiness and bullshit you put up with for so long are what have helped you to grow and become strong. Live life. Live love. Embrace Truth. And know that you are beautiful. 

In Peace and Love,
Namaste <3 





Saturday, April 16, 2016

A Buddhist Prayer for Healing...




Just as the soft rains fill the streams,
Pour into the rivers, and join together in the oceans,
So may the power of every moment of your goodness
Flow forth to awaken and heal all beings --
Those here now, those gone before, those yet to come.

By the power of every moment of your goodness
May your heart's wishes be soon fulfilled
As completely shining as the bright full moon,
As magically as by a wish-fulfilling gem.

By the power of every moment of your goodness,
May all dangers be averted and all disease be gone.
May no obstacle come across your way.
May you enjoy fulfillment and long life.

For all in whose heart swells respect,
Who follow the wisdom and compassion, of the Way,
May your life prosper in the four blessings
Of old age, beauty, happiness and strength.

In Peace and Love,
Namaste <3

Thursday, April 14, 2016

Victim NO MORE...


Please check out this video ("Discard Your Victim Status NOW") by Beverly Banov Brown, M.S... Brown incorporates nearly all the points I've discussed in this space thus far -- right down to the rose-tinted glasses (literally)... If you (or someone you know) are recovering from narc abuse, this is INVALUABLE information...

In Peace and Love,
Namaste <3

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

NO Contact 101...


"I don't feel you anymore,
You darken my door,
Whatever you're looking for,
Hey, don't come around here no more..."
~~ Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers, 
"Don't Come Around Here No More"

Breaking the narc's hold is VERY difficult.

Up to this point, you have lived your life through and for the narcissist. So, going No Contact can prove one of the greatest tests thus far.

Going NC is YOUR way of saying, "I am DONE." And mean it. 

But, why is it so difficult to walk away from the narc? Let's take a look at a few of the intricately weaved elements and how they influence our ability to call it Quits.

Habitual Focus ~~ The narc has trained you to put him/her FIRST... Always. Anything that was of value to you, such as your time, boundaries, interests, relationships, career, etc..., has been systematically chipped away to a cold void. Things that once made you happy no longer appeal to you b/c your SOLE focus has become pleasing the narc. In the early stages of NC, it is completely normal to feel helpless, lonely, and lost. It takes a while to re-establish your footing, but you WILL get there.

Worthless ~~ Once you've been discarded by the narc, your sense of self is non-existent. Regardless of how confident you were or how much you did or didn't love yourself going in to the relationship, you are left shattered and, if you are lucky, a shell of who you once were. It is ESSENTIAL during this time that you NOT engage in negative self-talk. Although you may feel it, you are NOT worthless. You are HUMAN. And you have endured a helluva nightmare.

Brainwashing ~~ The narc is a MASTER manipulator. The methodical emotional and psychological breakdown of a victim is one of the narc's most insidious acts of abuse. It took me nearly two years before I could even admit to myself, let alone anyone else, that the relationship was Abusive. I think that deep down I KNEW it to be true, but I couldn't call it by name b/c of the fear and guilt I felt for my abuser. Add to that the overwhelming feeling of doubt he'd instilled in me. You MUST be patient with yourself once you break free to the other shore. It takes a LONG time to reclaim your OWN MIND. So please, please give yourself time to find the Truth you so desperately need to heal.

No Boundaries ~~ Essentially, the narc took ALL of you and trampled it beyond recognition. EVERYTHING you stood for, believed, thought, etc... has been defiled by the narc. In addition, all the shame and blame for the narc's toxic behavior has also been thrust upon YOUR shoulders -- yeah, he/she lied, cheated, hit you, etc... but YOU are the one who is painted as the abuser. Once you are able to see the relationship for the illusion it truly was, it becomes easier to sort through all the Bullshit to find what you KNOW is representative of YOU.

Validation ~~ Once I left my abuser, the ONLY thing I wanted was for someone to tell me I WAS NOT CRAZY. I needed reassurance all the time that I was NOT the person the narc wanted others to believe me to be. I wanted ANSWERS. What gave him the right to be such a Conniving Evil Prick? Why ME? How could he simply waltz away like NOTHING happened? What kind of soulless, depraved Asshole could behave like that and think it is OK? Once I began talking to others who had been where I was and started seeing a therapist all the pieces began falling into place. I know I will NEVER get all the answers I seek b/c there aren't any... and I will, likewise, NEVER get an apology from him.

But you know what? It doesn't matter anymore. I don't WANT an apology. Mainly, b/c I KNOW any semblance of an apology would 1) cause him immense pain to even utter and, 2) it would NOT be genuine.

I will live the rest of my days a VERY happy and contented woman if I NEVER have to lay eyes on him again. Now that does not mean that I cannot practice compassion. I pray for him... Often... From a GREAT DISTANCE, a SAFE DISTANCE b/c if there is ANYONE who is in need of guidance,compassion, forgiveness and kindness it's him and those like him.

As I've said time and again, YES I still get angry. But I don't let that anger dominate me or my life. I let it come. I let it go. And I've noticed over time, its visits are less frequent and don't last nearly as long as they once did.

And that is just it, the narc WANTS you to be angry, resentful, hurt, broken, lost... Why give him/her what HE/SHE wants when 1) it is detrimental to YOUR well-being and, 2) life is now all about YOU... yes, YOU.

It is at this point, you MUST remember, YOU are in control now.

Once the narc figures out that you are NC with him/her I promise you he/she will use EVERY POSSIBLE MEANS to slither back into the tiniest crack to throw you off track and regain his/her hold over you. He/she will likely go from one extreme to the other --- from "admitting" fault and promising you the World to a full-on offensive that smears you to the point its like he/she is trying to eradicate your existence. It is often during this phase the abuse and violence escalate.

YOU CANNOT BUDGE.

I KNOW it is difficult. But you MUST be consistent and firm in your resolve. Even when the narc's FMs come a knockin' or calling, you CANNOT react. Period.

I've said it before and I will say it again, DOCUMENT EVERYTHING.

When you implement NC, YOU are setting necessary boundaries for YOUR healing. The narc and his/her happiness are no longer of any concern to you. YOU make the rules. YOU are finally back in control.

It is ESSENTIAL that you maintain NC -- otherwise, you risk MORE trauma, re-attachment and all the foulness that goes with it.

Don't worry, the narc's grandiose sense of entitlement and power will provide plenty of rope for him/her to hang him-/herself (figuratively speaking of course). Once they get mouthy, they get sloppy and start to stumble. Let him/her stumble AND FALL.

No worries, the fall won't cause the narc too much harm --- it just hastens the inevitable. You know, the part where those who have supported and bought in to the narc's delusions and lies but realize they have been duped.  

In Peace and Love,
Namaste <3