Carrying people has been a pattern and behaviour I have enacted for most of my life. I truly believed that my value was proportionate to my usefulness and that by carrying I had value, worth and a place in this world. To me if I carried others only, then would I be lovable and would therefore not be abandoned.
Now I see it as something completely different. I see it in a very different light.
In truth it was a clever tool I used to control the people and situations in life. I did it to feel safe and secure and it was an attempt by me to control what happened to those close to me. It slowed down the natural order and the flow of life and gave me the illusion of safety. It was a gilded cage for all involved.
What do I mean by carrying? Carrying ultimately means taking responsibility for how other people feel. For example, you decide to go out for an evening and not drink alcohol aa you want to feel fresh the next day. You’re friends are disappointed that you are not drinking and you feel like you are letting them down and spoiling the fun. You decide to have a drink to make them happy. This is a perfect example of making yourself responsible for their emotions at the expense of your own. You have essentially handed over your power to your friends, abandoned your own needs and substituted your own clear guidance to not drink for their expectations that have been placed upon you. They are making you responsible for their happiness, and putting conditions on your presence in the group. Their level of awareness of their behaviour is irrelevant, the weight of it is very real on the body. In a deeper sense you have confirmed to each other that you need each other to behave in a certain way to access happiness, co-dependency.
Carrying can mean making sure everyone is happy, not sad, not angry or making sure everyone agrees with you, approves of you and your choices, likes you, that you don’t speak up when boundaries are crossed for fear of the backlash etc, etc. To carry is to resist life, to control, to hold back, to decide the pace of growth or lack of for both myself and those I carry. It’s a form of procrastination. It’s a tool we use to feel safe by holding ourselves and those near and dear to us in a place of joyless comfort. It’s a place of conditional love, of co- dependency and it comes at a very high price to all involved.
For the carrier they are burdened infinitely, busy keeping others happy so that they are lulled into a very false sense of security. A numbed state, devoid of personal growth. It leaves the carrier resentful and empty with crippling low self–esteem as they have walked another’s path rather than looking at their own unique journey.
The person who is being carried becomes equally as vulnerable as the person who is doing the care taking. They will not experience the growth involved in finding their own feet and the strength that this creates within, instead they bypass the invaluable journey of stumbling and falling and getting back up on their feet again. They have been robbed of or given away their path of learning required to be sovereign and strengthened.
When a child is learning to walk and they fall do we pick them up and promise to carry them for as long as we live so that they will never experience growth, learning, hurts or experiences ever again?Would they not be left in a very weakened and vulnerable state if we did?
I believe when we carry, we foster weakness and co-dependency.