And Sometimes the Significance of Family is Overrated…

Do you see the perfect reflection in the seemingly chaotic Nature? Photo by myself

There is a conflicting perception
of what is real and what is fake
while navigating relationships
that are unaware of your inner journey
or outright deny your feelings as invalid.
They approve only what fits in their world
and make what comes from your heart invisible.

They want you to be assured of their love –
the one that lies behind
their everyday expressions
of negativity, sarcasm, facade
– the life of only upholding the structures
given to them and those
that you are required to inherit.

Your invitation to actually care
for each other with genuine words
and thoughtful gestures
rejected as naive.
All actions are transactions
for how we need each other in times of need –
all needs that translate into the Doing aspects
not really actually Being there for each other
without requiring you to be any different

All your initiatives of heartfelt love
are seen as your need for their support
when you might need it the next time,
and not for the love itself.

There is no receiving, gratitude, or reciprocity,
only need, indebtedness, and duty.
A made up love and made up relations
that we commit and adhere to.

The condition is also that your love
has to be contained for this family setting only
any expression towards outsiders is foolish or unrequired,
unless only exactly as defined by them.

Love and kindness are good in words
until you try and implement them
– that’s when they want to fix you,
to become worldsmart,
to play the power games,
to lend them your energy
and kindness-laden words
to bring them the results of their agenda.

Beyond that, they have no trust
or allowance for you acting on those words
and extending that heartfelt kindness
to someone, they don’t approve of.

They want you to get over
your mushy heart
that cried with hurting
from the lack of integrity
when expected to conform
to feel a part of family
You just don’t and won’t agree
with hating someone
when expected to hate
because you are family

And you will get hurt repeatedly
when they only insist on having
unconscious conversations
and otherwise, make you invisible
for who you really are
Your real conversations –
reserve them for those
showing up in
your Universal Family

Getting past this need
for nourishing family relations,
standing up for being yourself,
holding compassion
for what they bring as love and life,
not feeling like a fake
when speaking their language
limited to how we relate
– these are the many painful
rebirthing parts of the process.

Acutely aware of your inner body
the rumble of fear in your belly
a holding up in shoulders & your being
having to affirm to yourself
of the safety, trust, and love
available to you

Nourish your inner self with your own love.
Invite the ability to be with yourself
with comfort and ease
Allow the capacity for gratitude
For they are exactly who
assisted your life journey
into this deeper yearning
and more expansive
Love of your Being
the kind which still
holds all of them
with
Love.

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99 thoughts on “And Sometimes the Significance of Family is Overrated…

    • Relationships are a very rich ground for cultivation in our journey of authenticity. They help us grow beyond our expectations, to the greater source of Love. Thank you Brad for your thoughtful reflection on my words.

      Liked by 3 people

  1. Your words resonated deeply Pragalbha and your reflections are so honest, raw and real the dynamics of family relationships. Every word was a gift of your heart. I particularly connected with these:

    πŸ’–

    “And you will get hurt repeatedly
    when they only insist on having
    unconscious conversations
    and otherwise, make you invisible
    for who you really are
    Your real conversations –
    reserve them for those
    showing up in
    your Universal Family’

    I know intimately the hard and soft edges of family dynamics and the importance of stepping in and out of drama. It is vital to preserve my piece of mind and love from up close and personal or afar depending on what’s needed at the time.

    Thanks for sharing your heart.
    πŸ’–πŸ’–πŸ’–πŸ€—πŸ€—πŸ€—πŸ˜˜

    Liked by 5 people

    • It feels a deep privilege and gift to know you find resonance in my post – it is so comforting and delightful at the same time. The lines you picked to repeat – it makes them so precious for me to read back, as if the Universe validates them for me.
      “the hard and soft edges of family dynamics and the importance of stepping in and out of drama.” – I am loving this dance now that I am learning it continually and better than ever – you gave such perfect words for what it is.

      I am particularly thrilled at finding the capacity to love from afar, if needed, because Love is something I am not willing to give up on. while also recognizing how vital it is to prioritize my peace of mind.

      I wish I could convey how much I appreciate your presence here, your knowing words of experience and wisdom that empower me. Thank you very much truly _()_

      Liked by 4 people

      • I know believe me, because your words always hit my heart with knowingness. I’m so happy to hear that and they were your words that gave life to my feelings you so eloquently shared.

        It takes a lot of practice but learn… we do all in good time.

        Love is always there, it’s just how we choose to show up so we can preserve our peace of mind and others in turn

        Oh you just have so well by your words and your words bless me knowing that mine make a difference in your world as yours do in mine.
        You are most welcome as it’s my pleasure always. πŸ’–πŸ’–πŸ’–πŸ’–πŸ˜˜

        Liked by 3 people

  2. wow oh wow, stunning reflection – both pic and poem!

    Your raw open heart has touched so many of us … I learnt to love my family from afar for years when they struggled to treat my growth with nothing but gaslighting. Love won through and although they never ‘liked’ me they eased up on trashing me. I review it with deep sadness for their ignorant close mindedness. They know no better … My path is right for me and I’m so grateful I never compromised!

    Liked by 5 people

    • I am greatly humbled and happy to have this generous appreciation from you for the picture and the poem.
      I imagine you have walked this teraain deeper than I have known perhaps. It took me time to know, understand and recognize what gaslighting is. I trust for Love to win through – I refuse to not care, yet also now know better what not to expect. Your comment encourages and empowers me to keep going, no compromise πŸ™‚ Thank you very much Kate, truly appreciate your contributions and presence here, makes all the difference.

      Liked by 3 people

  3. Your words were beautifully put! Some family members only care about how yo make them look and they can’t love and appreciate you for who you are. But it’s funny that they can have a friend with your exact personality and show them the highest amounts of love and acceptance. However once we are able to love ourselves then rejection hurts less.

    Liked by 3 people

  4. I am always so amazed when I read your words at how much they resonate for me. Over the past 4 years, as I have traveled my inner depths, and have uncovered and shed many aspects of inherited programming and conditioning, I’ve witnessed many changes within the context of family. A marriage dissolve, and extended family shy away from the newness and Truth of Love, as it is manifest in reality, free of limitations and the bindings of inherited concepts. While painful, I’ve realized, as this knowing is continuously Delivered inside of a continuous an iterative process of Loved Beingness, that it’s just as it should be, for the light that shines within me must be poured out, and those that choose to leave, will leave, and those chosen for me to leave, will leave. I sit in a space of gratitude for you Pragalbha, as the affirmation of a life lived inside of the Love that encapsulates me today. With resonance and deep felt appreciation, I thank you. πŸ™πŸ’›

    Liked by 3 people

    • Your reflections on my post, and the resonance is equally moving for me. You give words that mirror with deep clarity, affirming how this process flows through the very fabric of our life and Being. The Newness and the Truth of Love is indeed alarming for those comfortable in their lane, and it is beyond time to stop beating ourselves back and down those lanes.
      I find this beautiful what you say – “this knowing is continuously Delivered inside of a continuous an iterative process of Loved Beingness” There is simply no escape from this, from the Light anymore. Nor the capacity to keep count of who is leaving. Only Gratitude for those walking each other home, – the Family is Universal now. Humble Bow to the Light with you and heartfelt gratitude for your kind presence here Jeff.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Being present in the space you’ve created for the sharing of the Nature of Being is such a gift to me. It’s an honor and a privilege, Pragalbha. This here that you write is so important, β€œand it is beyond time to stop beating ourselves back and down those lanes.” I completely agree with you. For a while, I held onto the idea that all would travel with me. No more. It is not my Choice to make, it is theirs. And this, β€œOnly Gratitude for those walking each other home, – the Family is Universal now.” fills me with great Joy. Indeed, the Family is Universal, and it is just as it should be. In Appreciation and Gratitude for You, my dear friend. πŸ€πŸ™

        Liked by 1 person

        • It is empowering to me to read from you here yet again – Oh how I believed all will travel with me!! There’s still parts of me shedding the last shreds of that idea time and again. I am receiving these reminders renewedly this morning from you – everything that we are saying here, and repeating to each other, with such grace and joy of resonance.

          Liked by 1 person

          • It is equally empowering to me, as I continue to walk into new iterations of Self, in what feels like a daily and sometimes by the moment Unfolding and Shedding. Ah! I completely understand these ideas, Samskaras, continue to hold on, and they pop up again and again, yet I do reside in the Knowing that in their time they will dwindle and leave, as many others have.
            I am so thankful for you, and Grateful to you for this space of resonance. Is so wonderful.

            Liked by 1 person

  5. Where there is love, there is hurt. We have to embrace both to live a meaningful life Prag. The truth dawns slowly though! 😊 The poem is too long but it conveys some profound messages that we all can relate to.

    Liked by 3 people

    • The truth does dawn slowly, yes. I agree with you on embracing both.
      You caught me right on that!! – This was originally a prose in my draft. When I felt called to post it, it wanted to go out as a poem! So I edited it majorly – and then argued with the Poem that She was too long and we will have to go back to prose. She won’t budge Balroop – so here I am with the longest poem I would have ever agreed upon :))
      Thank you very much for your kind visit, it truly means a lot to me!

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Beautiful wisdom and awareness of the truth Pragalba. I agree, When we take the time to step away from the chaos and the suffering. We can discover the loving awareness that is within us always. And in this space we can witness what is true and what needs to let go. A practice indeed πŸ™πŸ»πŸ§‘

    Liked by 3 people

    • You gave very kind, wise, and loving words for the purpose of this awareness Karen. Thank you very much, I truly appreciate your comment. It is a gift to discover that love underneath it all, and to make choices from there. A practice, yes. Thank you.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Love your deeply emotional poetry; as always it resonates and rings so true! The expectations aren’t always the healthiest for us if we are expected to compromise who we are or even to keep secret the unhealthiness that runs through the relationships! These are definitely the things that can damage us in deep ways, and which we can spend years unpicking to old woven patterns! The expectations of unhealthy loyalties… it takes courage to choose not to participate and to even choose a different path! Kudos for pouring this out in such a beautiful way!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Dear Tamara keeping the unhealthiness a secret does cause a deep damage to recover from. To become aware, discern, and make choices in the other direction takes up quite a bit of life energy to say the least. It costs a significant portion of a lifetime to keep steering away and recover from imprints of experiences. It is all so worth it if we can land at Love, with Love for all involved and Gratritude for helping us realize our own self worth and how to create healthy boundaries. Thank you so much for your ever so thoughtful response and appreciating how it came to be.

      Liked by 1 person

      • I totally agree with you! When we first choose to leave, often we choose people and experiences which feel like they would be the opposite of where we were, but to swing to the opposite side of the pendulum isn’t necessarily healthy either! As we grow in healing and developing self worth and self love, the balanced armed somewhere in the middle is where we find our true selves! Yes, swinging away from those unhealthy relationships takes so much energy but it becomes so much easier when we locate our true selves and allow ourselves to live gently in that zone, doesn’t it?!

        Liked by 1 person

        • “As we grow in healing and developing self worth and self love, the balanced armed somewhere in the middle is where we find our true selves!” – this is so perfect what you said! It is in the interest of our own well being to find the balance and stay true to ourselves. It is a deep joy to interact with you Tamara, thank you for taking the time.

          Liked by 1 person

  8. Reading your post I am reminded of Erma Bombeck’s book…”Family, the ties that bind and gag”!
    Those we care about hurt us the most and the familial ties have to bear the burden of expectations all the time.
    Who hasn’t been hurt by the family? But do we wallow in self-pity or use it as a springboard to look deeply within. Very resonant words, Pragalbha and as always your gentleness shines. ❀️

    Liked by 1 person

    • That book title is powerful – thank you for sharing with me this author and teh book Punam.
      I am encouraged know that you see positive springboard and gentleness in my poem – I think I was subconsciously worried of it being a bit too much otherwise.
      “Who hasn’t been hurt by the family? ” – this question helps normalize how these relations are true grounds of cultivation for our deeper values. I truly appreciate your thoughtful response and it is a deep joy to know you find teh resonance. Thank you very much kind friend.

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    • I am very glad and grateful to know you found positive hope by the end. Thank you very much for your kind appreciation, it means a lot to me that you take the time to share your comment.

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  9. When those closest to us remain separate, there is a lot of pain. They simply don’t understand. Don’t let the familiar ways of interacting upset the divine nature that shines in you. They deserve our love and sympathy. It is our greatest challenge to forgive and accept. Yet, without them, we would not be where we are, today. Sending a hug to that little one in you who still hurts. πŸ’•πŸ™πŸΌπŸ’•

    Liked by 1 person

    • You speak the wisdom and truth that I needed to hear yet again dear Val. Thank you for the reminder. Thank you for reminding me also of my own light and capacity for Love. I am insistent of that Love. Yes we wouldn’t be where we are without the assistance of these souls, I agree. This poem is from an older draft of prose, it felt good timing to post and I had thought I have crossed the bridge into Love by now. And yet the little one in me receives a lot from your hug. Thank you.

      Liked by 1 person

  10. Loved the title of this post, Pragalbha. And every word rings true. Family hurts, the family loves and family takes us for granted. As long as they’re not those with whom we need to deal on an everyday basis, it’s ok to distance yourself so your core remains strong. I’m sure everybody has been hurt by family at some point in time and that is because we expect. It gets easier when we lower our expectations. Despite the sadness in the poem, it was inspiring because of the end where you talk about depending on one’s self.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Your words are very comforting and wise in how you make a simple clear reflection of how it indeed is. Very true our expectations bring that hurt. It is my insistence that we arrive at Love no matter what and that is only possible if we are able to depend on ourselves. Thank you Smitha for your thoughtful reading and reflection.

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  11. I very much resonate with your heartfelt poem…it gives me a glimpse of your experiences & realization…what you’ve gone through & how you “turned the table” to simply BE…the Being you are…just like Cheryl said that “family interactions are the source of intense love and intense pain.”…and I agree with you that “Family interactions are such rich grounds to cultivate our inner growth and capacity for greater Love”…we can only grow when we don’t suppress our energy; when we truly dare to see deep in our eyes…true family bond is a blessing…where there’s pure love & understanding…but that relation becomes a cage when it’s coated with expectations, desires, terms, fake respect, fake smile, guilt, powerplay, emotional blackmail etc…beautifully written poem, Pragalbha…keep shining ✨

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you for conveying your resonance and heartfelt appreciation too Navin. There is a part of me that is not very happy about posting this poem – I am not used to taking up space like this – it feels more about the human drama inside me and less about seeing/bringing the Universal energy of our life experiences for the Love, Beauty and Truth they hold. I willingly and wholeheartedly surrender to the guidance and the flow of words that came to be, and also question, do I want to continue to amplify human experiences or pull back and dive deeper to discover more gems to offer to my humanness and humanity. For now I feel utmost gratitude to receive this support for my expressions – and allowing me to take this space humbly.

      Liked by 1 person

      • You’re welcome Pragalbha…I do know where you come from & why a part of you don’t feel happy posting this poem…yeah, it might feel like a human drama & perhaps, it is…allowing oneself to feel what one has gone through is more about learning & seeing where one stands today…the essence of this poem is what it matters…that’s the key…you’re giving voice to something, which a lot of people have experienced…can relate to…but they don’t want to talk about it openly…you’re able to…that’s your strength…it’s a poem filled with experiences, learnings & wisdom on your spiritual path, my friend…this is how I see it πŸ’«

        Liked by 1 person

        • It is very kind of you to share with me your positive perspective on my writing – it certainly gives me a comfort and satisfaction – it felt clear that this was to be posted and I appreciate you conveying the validity of giving a clear voice to our experiences, I do feel the power in owning and sharing as they come, it feels a great privilege to receive this resonance and support, and the freedom I now feel to move on from these experiences into newer territories of being. Thank you my friend, my deepest Gratitude to you.

          Liked by 1 person

  12. This is deep Pragalbha.. speaks of profound wounds, as one is expected to Be a certain way… Just because of family… When the yearning within just wants to BE.. and Be loved for who they are…
    Yet even this is in itself a blessing, for it makes them stronger, and allows them the knowing of inner love and respect of oneself… Holding Integrity … Empowering them to stand firm within their own true self..
    One then sees the Fake from the real…. and knows which one they truly wish to nourish..
    Beautifully expressive dear friend…
    Sending Love and Blessings your way.. ❀

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Thank you for sharing so much honesty on a topic some might fear to speak out openly, because it’s painful and doesn’t fit the image people want to project to the world. I can see from the comments that it truly resonated, with myself included. It’s so hard to make progress as a human being when family, the ones who are supposed to love you, refuse to see the efforts you’re making. They keep you right where you are because you figure that, well, they know the real you, so why bother.

    Liked by 1 person

    • “doesn’t fit the image people want to project to the world” – I feel much exhaustion with regards to this, and perhaps that made me share this. I am very glad to know that it feels honest and resonant. I truly appreciate your thoughtful response, it is very kind of you Hetty.

      Liked by 1 person

  14. There is so much truth in this piece and I felt I would connect with it after reading the opening lines and the title alone! The trajectory of this journey and its emphasis on self-love and self-healing as a continuous process of rebirth is simply beautiful and empowering. ❀

    Liked by 1 person

    • Your thoughtful and beautiful response makes me feel good about writing this piece Jaya. I feel grateful to know you could connect and found it empowering – because I had felt unsure about posting it, it felt a different expression to me than the kind I have become comfortable sharing. Thank you very much for your appreciation and support.

      Liked by 1 person

  15. This resonates with me quite a bit. Years ago, I began treating all people the same; we’re all in relationship with one another. It doesn’t matter if you’re my “grandmother” or “friend.” I treat everyone the exact same; I expect reciprocity, care, and compassion from each person who is in my so-called circle. If not, then we either have a conversation about it, or I see the relationship for what it is and act accordingly, but always from a place of love.

    Apologies for writing so much, but this really did strike a nerve in me. Thank you, as always, for these important takeaways.

    Liked by 1 person

    • No apologies really, what you say is exactly how I feel and agree with. It took me quite a while to learn to draw these boundaries – the cultural hierarchies in relations didn’t really make sense to me ever when there was no genuine care that came as part of the relations.
      Sharing this post was kind of an edge for me to call things out this openly for what they are. You have modeled to me the value and power in this kind of honest sharing and your posts are part of my inspiration to allow my own expressions. So it is my great honor and privilege to have your thoughtful reflection on this post, it feels a great support to how the writer in me is unfolding.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Oh wow. Thank you for saying that last part, Pragalbha! I’m glad to have been a part of your growth in this explicit way. Please know I feel the same, but for different reasons, of course. Your writing is always well-thought out, which creates a beautiful expression. As I like to tell many of my writer friends: iron sharpens iron πŸ˜‰

        Liked by 1 person

  16. Yes. Hypocrisy begins at home I guess. And it’s something you can’t do much about, for it hides behind the age old veils of love, and responsibilities. Quite well expressed what we all go through without even having to step out of our own houses. πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

    • Your visit is a great joy and happiness my kind friend! Your comment makes me smile in agreement – very true what you say. I was a little alarmed about being guided to post this, as it felt a detour from my usual focus. It means the world to me to find this support and validation in this community from friends like you, so I can allow space for these truthful expressions. Thank you so much for taking the time to share your thoughtful response.

      Liked by 1 person

  17. This is such an honest write about relationships, as they are with everyone whether one admits it or not. In a world where we all revolve around other people and vice versa, through one relationship or another, it is indeed important to pause and think about how we value ourselves, with and without those relationships…and realise that the highest value and importance we attach should be to the relationship that we have with our own self, rather than any other. Kudos for writing on such an under the carpet topic. πŸ‘

    Liked by 1 person

    • It did take me a long time to admit to myself the core nature of these relationships, and the value I place on myself without being in reference to them. It was an edge for me to write about it openly and find the willingness to cross that threshold into the truth of my being. Thank you for the valuable support you bring by sharing your reflections, it means a lot to me.

      Liked by 1 person

  18. Pragalbha you have gone into the core of family relationships, now let me tell you this is a fact, I have through this but ultimately we have to learn to be away and calm.
    You are out of it anyways it trying to.
    I was astonished by the comments section as to this happens to people in US, I thought more so it was in India
    Blessings to You
    My God

    Liked by 1 person

    • It is such an honor and happiness to have your kind visit after so long Shiva. Thank you for taking the time. I agree with you – these are such common experiences everywhere, regardless of country of origin, if we were to let go of our facades and share openly. I am very grateful for this community for their support of truthful expressions, and willingness to respond and reciprocate with resonance. It helps us all to see and feel that we are not alone in our suffering of any kind.

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      • Hello Pragalba I too am honoured to get your response in such a way. Thanks
        I am inspired to write a Haiku. We humans are such that we do not attempt to know the feelings of others when we express. This is the main cause for all this. Everyone sees in his/her way not bothering what are the repercussions.
        In these conditions we should see that we are calm and show them about it whatever that may come then they may feel something. Its in my experience.
        See, I am feeling I have lost all my friends here, wp is not sending notifications to followers. Of course there was a gap in my postings. I am happy you came. There is a glitch…. Have you got the notification of my latest post “Sands of Time” please visit and your precious comment on that. I am getting very few of my following in my reader. How about You.
        I was browsing my older Post comment page and went to blogger most of them have left or either have not posted since long.
        Blessings, stay connected

        Liked by 1 person

        • Greetings Shiva to you, I agree with you on the patience and calmness needed for communications within relations.
          I hear you about WP. I have been informed by a few that my posts don’t show up in their Reader, but I don’t know what to do about it. I will right away visit your site. I too am posting way less than my normal, and I agree a lot of bloggers are not seen any more – the world is literally changing for all of us. There are fewer who visit my site than before, and I am very grateful to those who visit and interact presently. Thank you, I am very happy to see you back.

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