I knew I had been fighting with myself for days again. There is a certain fear stuck inside me and I do not succeed accepting it. I try to hide it. Resist it. Fight it. Not only over the past few days these emotions came haunting me, but for many days over the last months and years I felt it.

What do I feel?

When I let someone come close to me -the real, vulnerable, naked me- it frightens me. I become afraid they will hurt me. A part of me sends out warning signals. Be careful! Protect yourself! Take distance! Guard yourself!

There are three components at this moment that bring these feelings to the surface, stronger than ever before:

1. I am more open, vulnerable and aligned with myself than ever. It has become a lot easier to show the real, vulnerable, naked me to others.

2. Having an open relationship means not only the partner I live with is in the position where I feel he can possibly hurt me on a very deep level, but several people are in this position. There are simply more occasions for strong emotions to come up.

3. I see clearly when I try to control people or a situation, look for confirmation outside myself, try to find false security or blame others for my feelings. There is no way that I can fool myself anymore.

The only way is right through the middle of it all. I knew it and I felt it. But I also knew it would be painful.

Even though I know fighting with yourself is nothing but a battle that eats you alive without victory (because it is all you), that is exactly what I did: not accepting my emotions. Judging myself for feeling insecure about loved ones connecting with others. I judged myself for I believed I should be way beyond that point by know. Me, a person who writes about polyamory and how wonderful it is, is having a hard time when others share their love? Oh come on, I should not have those feelings. Get over it. Just breathe. You know that their interactions with others do not mean they do not like you anymore.

I did not understand why those feelings kept coming back intensely when I knew there was no reason for feeling them. I know all the theories, I have explained them myself to others so many times.

Until I understood that I did not accept myself and my feelings at all. I was in a battle. Again. I knew the pattern. It was exactly the same as when my love had a girlfriend and he visited her. This time it was another love who visited another woman. I recognized that -again- my mind wandered during the day. Would they have fun? Would they have a great time? Would they be intimate? The worst parts were, as always, those moments that you just know they are on their way home, or back home, and you have not heard anything yet. The control freak in me pops up. Should I send a message? Should I just ask how it was? My mind tries to trick me. Was there not something I wanted to ask or share any way that cannot wait and I have to do now? Than projections follow. I do not hear anything. You see? The other person is much nicer than I am. I am forgotten already. Passé. Old news. Not exciting anymore. Maybe I should protect myself and create distance.

I decided to not do anything, take a hot shower and let my emotions get washed away by the warm water. When I got out of the shower I noticed I received several messages. Sweet messages, just like this morning, showing a lot of love and appreciation.

The naked WilriekeThis morning, after I brought my daughter to school, I went to a little area with trees and vast grasslands. The grass was frozen, covered with a layer of white, glistering icing. The sun was colored bright red and orange. The air was crisp. What a beautiful morning!

I was walking under the trees, watching the people walking their dogs. A big dog ran straight at me at started playing with me. It made me think of what feels like a long time ago when I lived with my parents. My father never learned to express his feelings to people. He was very caring and loving to our family dog. Completely unlike his attitude towards his family.

This mental flash reminded me how I was still fighting my emotions. How I hated myself for not being able to let go of feelings of neediness towards controlling people and situations. I hated myself for feeling insecure and wanting to receive confirmation of being liked by my loved ones. It was a big battle and I was not on the winning side.

I saw myself as that little girl that wanted to feel the love directed at the dog. I did not want to fight her. I wanted to hold her and hug her. I felt my guards lowering their shields. Their weapons scattering on the ground. What a noise.

“Little girl, may I invite you to share with me what is on your mind? How are you doing? What are you so intensely trying to make me aware of with all these emotions I kept fighting for so long?’

The little girl in my mind started sharing what was on her mind. She showed me moments in this life where she felt rejected and alone. Moments when people turned away from her when she needed them the most. She also showed me moments from other lives. They appeared in my mind like flashes of memories that I had not been through in this life, but that came with such an emotional charge that I must have felt those moments some time. I saw myself as a woman waiting for her man who left to the sea and never returned. I saw myself as a young slave girl, used and abandoned so many times. I saw myself as a woman seduced by men to be left as soon as they found someone newer, younger, more exciting.

Tears streamed down my face as I walked in the park and felt all those intense emotions of pain, disappointment, and sadness. ‘I hear you girl, I hear you and I feel you deeply. I understand why you feel you need to protect yourself, for you have been hurt so often. I know why you look for confirmation from others for they have abandoned you so often. I know why you are afraid when your lovers meet others, for you have been left behind without a word so often. I love you little girl and I understand you now. I cannot promise you will never be hurt again. True freedom is letting go of control or the need for control. You cannot control people or situations, and you do not have to. They live their life, their purpose. They learn their lessons. And they can never -ever- make you feel assured or happy. You are the only one who can.’

I took a look at the bright red sun, reflected on the thin, fragile layer of ice on the wet grasslands. There was so much beauty in the scene. ‘How could anyone express the beauty of what they see to you? How can anybody make you feel loved? You are the key, girl. You and you alone. You are your eyes, your ears, and your heart. You are your fears and your love. You are everything. You are the one who can open or close your heart. You know what life is like when you close your heart. It might be safer, but it is also cold, sad and without exciting moments. It would be a mediocre life of scarcity. You know also that when you open your heart love will start flowing. It is vulnerable to live with an open heart, but it is the only way to truly live and be happy. The choice is all yours.’

And I know what I want to choose for. I choose to be that real, vulnerable, naked version of me that radiates love. I embrace that little girl, the abused woman, the abandoned slave girl, the fighter and the woman who wants to be above her feelings. Once again I felt deeply that they only want to be heard.

I wrote this as an entry in my journal, but I decided to share this with you, to help you understand me and to help me understand you. To let you know you are not alone with all that you feel. Even though we all live our own lives, the paths we walk are often similar.

I embrace myself with all emotions that I feel. I embrace you with all emotions that you feel. I hear you, sister. I see you, brother. I love you all.

p.s. In case you wonder: yes, it’s me in the picture.

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