Self Trust and More

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    Cali Chica

    Dear Anita,

    I want to hold on close to that nice sweetness. Back to the words we used: softness and tenderness. After our last conversation when you opened up to me about your background. And the interaction we exchanged – it brings me back to the feeling of innate natural CC.

    Soft tender and very appreciative of deep human connection.



    Dear Cali Chica:

    The “innate natural CC. Soft tender ..”- the combo of fear and anger will keep interfering with this innate and natural, soft and tender you, as it interfered with the same in me and it still does. Not your fault, not mine. But we aim at a return to that innate person, that softness and we can get there, and we are getting there, little by little. It can happen only if we trust ourselves (“Self Trust”, still applies) to know what to do in different situations to protect ourselves, to know who to associate with and in what ways,  and who to not associate with, who is our friend and who is not.

    You wrote that in your 20s you trusted “the judgement and opinions of people who far from deserved this sort of value, respect or ‘adoration'”- I think that you were still looking for a good parent, someone worthy of a child’s adoration, someone to guide you well, so you tended to see people as such good parents and you gave them your respect and adoration, expecting them to maybe love you and guide you in return.

    “More than a decade later- that pattern and scenario continues.. Looking to others as a guide versus my husband and I”- still needing that good parent figure, we all do, when we had none. But why not your husband- maybe because your parents already expressed not thinking highly of him (your father said, in India, that they agreed to the choice of husband because you were getting old is one such input), and maybe because you  observed all through your life that a husband (your mother’s husband) is not much of an authority in the home, not at all, really.

    The anger exercise, yes, when you are ready-



    Cali Chica

    Dear Anita,

    Absolutely not your fault, nor mine. Yet how easy it is to forget that. How easy it is to simply take on this “identity” – of course, we didn’t know better. Even as adults my age or yours – or any – our intelligence can not supercede deeply ingrained emotional patterns.

    The sheaths on the neurons can’t be simply peeled away with awareness. It takes daily work doesn’t it. That which we do here.

    Yet I want to talk about that innate self. How beautiful it is. To have humor, passion, and a zest for life – despite what we have been through. How incredibly special.

    Yes it takes a special person to embark on the journey. On the path. May we always remind ourselves of this pearl. It is this quality that will allow us to move forward each day, always,  no matter what the history and no matter how many steps back the day before. Net forward.

    • This reply was modified 6 days, 1 hour ago by  Cali Chica.


    Dear Cali Chica:

    You have a beautiful way of saying things, this is why once in a while I bring up that book that you will write one day. That “zest for life”, I felt it just a moment ago as I looked  outside, the trees, the grey sky, covered with clouds, the birds chirping. The image of a child running on green grass. You like the feel of wet grass, you mentioned in one of the exercises, as a child outside the house… and in Central Park recently, after the picnic, the grass… that feels like that zest for life?



    Cali Chica

    Dear Anita,

    Thank you. Yes I recall that cool grass, slightly wet- Dewey. On a cool morning, beads of water and texture. Vibrant green. The feeling of your feet coming out of your shoes and touching that cool refreshing grass. Oh what a pleasure!

    Every time I go to Central Park and I am wearing sandals (summer of course), I make it a point to touch the cool refreshing grass. Nowadays, a respite for often tired achey feet.

    Yes that zest comes in many forms. Many to do with nature – just like you described. An appreciation for the vast and ever changing beauty of nature, animals, and yes – human beings.

    I love children. Seeing young children play with my dog is exquisite! So much pure joy, surprise, awe, excitement, fearlessness.

    There is so much amazement in each day.

    That is precisely why many, that think like me, suffer. As they know there is beauty and joy, but are often bogged down by the madness and frenzy within.

    • This reply was modified 5 days, 21 hours ago by  Cali Chica.


    Dear Cali Chica:

    We mentioned the Frenzy many times. Can you describe it, the frenzy, best you can, your experience of it and do you remember it as a child?

    (I will be away from the computer for an hour or so)



    Cali Chica

    Dear Anita,

    I will continue the anger exercise. It almost makes me laugh – as here I was talking about zest and the simple pleasures of life – and now back to anger!

    Well that’s the reality. It’s not enough (for us) to know what we love and enjoy. That’s not difficult or profound. It’s imperative to also understand what hinders us from those moments, in our mind – From within.

    I will write what comes to mind without edit.

    You (mother) are so foolish. I see you in your weird stupid skirt, frizzy hair and red lipstick. I remember showing my friend a picture of us in Morocco. And we did have a great time- I mean a beautiful country and people now could we not. But I remember showing him this picture and the first thing he said was that you looked crazy. Now this guy was a jokester and extremely brash – but still. So I instantly wanted to defend you. Wow like a parent defending a child! I was about to say oh no don’t say that! That’s my mom’s favorite skirt and she loves bright colors and lipstick. That’s her.

    Always jumping to your defense. Painting this smiley amazing unique bright picture of who you are. Of who you told us you are. I was Instantly at your defense. How brainwashed!  And then I looked at it and you look insane!!! Like a psycho 50 something year old wearing random clothes from a child’s closet mixed with luxury items. Ridiculous and tacky and no not bright and unique. That stupid airy smile. What’s behind it. Nothing!

    So yes when he said that I should have said – ya you’re right – she looks insane like a clown whore. I look normal and modest compared to her!!!

    Always putting on a show were you? The queen? Queen of what? Your own little town where you reigned. Oh how we believed it, my sister and I. That you were the coolest Chick in town growing up. Always having the most fashionable outfits, friends with everyone – happy as a clam.

    Oh and how your happy world crashed to an end once you arrived to the US.

    But how? So you have zero coping skills, or any skills of value – yet back then as a child and adolescent you were awesome. Hmmm

    What kind of story is this? Your autobiography chapter 1 and 2. How stupid. How utterly juvenile and stupid.

    Yes you’re a child.   Not a sweet cute innocent one. No a stupid pouty child stuck in an adults body – no a mother’s!

    You spent your entire life applauding what type of mother you are. You don’t even know what the definition of mother means. For one it means putting your child first. No really first. Not in the ways you did. But in reality.

    Anita told Me I was searching for parental figures and guidance in all of the friendships and people I valued incorrectly. She is right. And even to this day it is hard to see my husband – who helped save me from you – as that sort of “authority” or go to. Yet I do rely and depend on him so heavily for support.

    Sound familiar?

    You taught me this selfish and destructive behavior- the type that destroys people. You treated dad like this, despite whatever he did. You used him to get “somewhere” which was nowhere and stomped on him. Most of all you did that to me. No wonder this is how I treat the person now closest to me. No wonder! Modeled behavior.

    So back to that picture of us. It’s funny how many lies it shows. 1) that you look cool and stylish. 2) that we are best travel buddies 3) that you are a mother and I am a daughter.

    1) you look horrendous and clownish and yes embarrassing – no nice clothes don’t only look good on tall people it’s not that – but you need to dress for your age and body you psycho

    2) we aren’t best travel buddies. Did you forget I was a medical resident at this time. You’re lucky I have abundant energy back then and enthusiasm. What I truly needed during a vacation was sleep and solace – but I never knew this. No. I loved going everywhere and doing as much as possible. I enjoyed it. But it wasn’t what I NEEDED. It was never about what I needed – it was only ever about what YOU needed. So here I am years later bone tired. So tired.

    3) in this picture there is a smiling mother and daughter. But the reality is that it’s a young woman learning about herself and the world (me) and a mentally deranged person feigning motherhood.

    It’s a perfectly sane kind person alongside a psychopath that will eat her alive and dangle her around. It’s a motivated dedicated young woman and her pimp next to her, her manager, her circus director.

    There’s also a sane strong and smart young doctor, and her major client : her selfishly ailing blood sucking mother.


    Cali Chica

    The frenzy..

    I remember a few instances from childhood. Not the feeling of frenzy but anecdotes

    I recall being around 12 or so and having some sort of assignment where he had blocks or dominos or the like and we had to use them for math or something. It involved building them up or something. I recall the boy sitting next to me – Dennis. I remember he made me nervous as he was the bad kid teasing type. Wasn’t a crush just nervous I would say. I recall knowing what I needed to do with these block things but doing it slowly or strangely and knocking it down when Dennis was looking at what I was doing. Sounds like a nervous giggly girl in front of a crush. But I distinctly remember feeling something along the lines of – I know what I need to do but I feel weird or don’t want to look too smart.

    I remember another time – the science fair. My father had helped me with my project about the heart. I was happy with it. We all had a booth/space and mine was next to this kid Andrew. A chubby popular bully type – we all know those. When people came by we would explain our project, it was fun and lowstress type of thing. I remember my mother commenting that I wasn’t focusing on my own thing, and kept looking at Andrew and his friend and laughing. I remember it distinctly and that she was right. I wasn’t able to enjoy or appreciate the project in front of me. I was focused on laughing along with this cool kid – making jokes.

    Frenzy – how can I explain it. I’ll just see what comes to mind and type ( I am on my phone so sorry for any typos).

    Frenzy is madness in the brain. It’s having a center and focus such as oh this coffee is good it tastes different. But your mind staying there for a millisecond. After that flash the mind goes every which way. To me the frenzy isn’t the classic self doubt. Oh how do I look, do they like me etc.  No that’s what shown on TV or teen romance novels. No This frenzy is much more contrived and tricky.

    Sometimes it can arise about something entirely unrelated. Like sitting and drinking a nice coffee and realizing – God I never get this chance. God why do I always give my energy away – God stupid selfish people- like these dumb weddings – oh stupid email from S (won’t get into it) – and then down the path of her email and how they are versus I am and how annoying and blah blah. There – one microsecond of enjoying coffee and Bam thoughts on the annoyances in the world.

    Frenzy is also inability to be still. To be in a moment that is serene- but finding your mind going through every which way. They say in meditation you aren’t supposed to push to stop your thoughts (impossible anyway) but to gently observe them. Well frenzy is anything but gentle.

    It’s not observing it’s jumping right in – sabotage. Oh S And her stupid wedding yup let me get allworked up about it. Oh stupid lady at work – yup let me analyze all of it. Oh how annoying it is to be a doctor when people are ungrateful- let me think of so many examples. Oh my poor husband and his toxic job situation – let me think of why this is so entirely unfair.

    Frenzy is your mind not having an off switch, or a faulty one at best. Stuck between on and off. Never able to go into respite. Brain spinning over and over wasting energy and depleting neurons. Frenzy is Inability to sit with one self first before attending to a situation good OR bad. Key point. Sitting with yourself first before anything.

    Jumping in straight into the boiling water. No dipping the toe. Nope. Come on in let’s Burn. Burn burn. Now jump out and go enjoy your day!


    That’s frenzy –





    • This reply was modified 5 days, 20 hours ago by  Cali Chica.


    Dear Cali Chica:

    After I posted to you last I sat with a piece of paper to write what Frenzy means to me and I did. I then went back to the computer, read your amazing first post and replied at length, then read your second, quoted from your post on Frenzy, added my typed notes and lost the internet twice, the post to you lost. Thinking again about your first post: what you wrote there is the truth, it.. looks like the truth, smells like the truth, I can see it. The … almost unbelievable truth, for who would think of a mother as an insane clown, yet… how twisted reality is, when it comes to humans. How obscenely removed from what it should be. I was thinking of the many people who would say: no… it can’t be, she is your mother… you shouldn’t talk about your mother … and yet, this IS the truth. Don’t let anyone take this away from you, your ability and courage to see reality as-it-was and as-it-is.

    Regarding your second post, you mentioned the blocks or domino experience, how you were putting them together slowly or strangely and frenzied, you knocked them down. The heart project, your mother was laughing with the cool kid in the next booth or space, and so your focused was there, where hers was. Not in your project, your space.

    Sipping coffee, enjoying it for just a millisecond before thinking about the dumb wedding, S, and whatnot.

    This all fits with the notes I took before reading your recent posts. I wrote that Frenzy= Fear+ Escape, or Fear + Running away. Frenzy is the instant when we feel Fear and automatically, immediately, in the same instant, we run. We run away from awareness of the fear.

    Again, Frenzy is Fear + Running away from fear.

    If we can find a way- and I have done it already, and so have you- to CUT the line between Fear and Running away from it, then we prevent Frenzy.

    It is not Fear alone that makes Frenzy. It is Fear and Running away from it that makes Frenzy.

    You were running away from fear when you knocked down the dominos, when you were no longer attentive to your heart project booth, when you were no longer attentive to the coffee you were sipping, when you were no longer attentive to being in South America on vacation (comparable to the heart project booth) and attentive instead to nyc (the other kid’s booth), when you leave your apartment in the morning with bed unmade, and so on and on and on.

    Cut the continuum between Fear and the Running Away from fear, and you eliminate the Frenzy.

    Now I will be going out on my walk.


    • This reply was modified 5 days, 18 hours ago by  anita.

    Cali Chica

    Dear Anita,

    Putting it in this sort of equation really resonates with me.

    Frenzy = Fear + Escape

    You wrote:

    Fear + Flight. If we can find a way- and I have done it already, and so have you, to CUT the line between Fear and Running away from it, then we prevent Frenzy.

    Please remind me how I have found a way to cut that line, from what you know.  At this moment I can not recall it and look forward to reminding myself/or realigning with that process. (of course when you are available – enjoy your walk!)


    Cali Chica

    Dear Anita,

    I know you won’t see this until later – and I would like to read your reply to the cutting of the frenzy Fear line – before you read this.

    But I would like to journal about what cutting that line is or means – since it is fresh in my mind now.

    Seems like cutting the line — hmmm. Catching the frenzy in its tracks. I remember learning- stop drop and roll.

    This was ingrained in our brains as kids. Of you sense a fire- stop drop and roll.

    Entirely useless it seemed at the time and I haven’t thought about that in over 20 years – but it came to my mind right now.

    The visual is stopping in your tracks, dropping to your knees and rolling on the floor.

    Stopping in your tracks –

    sometimes it’s that simple. I have trouble often not completing the intense or anxious thought or action. For example if someone around me is triggering me for whatever reason – it is hard to in the middle of responding just stop. It feels like a pressure to have to continue. A more direct example would be- a person saying oh I don’t really like NYC don’t know how people can live there … I’ll start my response by saying “oh I can see that, well for some….” And right there I realize I don’t need to be responding or explaining myself or ANYTHING. It’s useless filler talk and feeds the frenzy. But it is difficult to stop it in its tracks. So the convo continues. The few times I have stopped – such as above I started saying “oh yes I can see that…but” and ending it with simply “but ya…” Stopping my input. Done. Fine and so much less energy wasted. It works. But one must be comfortable stopping in their tracks.

    Next – Drop-

    This Is a tough one. To drop to ones knees is a symbol of vulnerability. And in this visual exercise I believe that the drop to vulnerability is key. Stop and sense the trigger or FEAR (fire). And then have the vulnerability to almost surrender to it and accept it.

    Example here would be- noticing that this person’s comment about NYC makes me feel defensive or judged. But then realizing it’s a general comment and not about me. Or – good for them who cares if they aren’t a city person. Or – yes they are judging decisions of those who live here – but it doesn’t matter, yet it does trigger me. That last one Dropping down to vulnerability of knowing that I am easily triggered and perhaps sensitive to such comments (just an example). Perhaps due to my uneasy of our decision to move back here at first.

    Next example, say the horrific wife of the friend comes over because she had to for some reason. I am triggered and I don’t see it clearly but I am all sorts of frenzied. Running around making sure there’s enough food. Continuously asking everyone how they’re doing or if they want something to eat or drink. Not sitting. Frenzied energy and frenzy unto my husband. Stopping would be key. Literally putting the plate down. Literally being in the kitchen about to open the fridge and saying to myself – nope not needed everything is fine. But also the next drop. Saying to myself – this person is triggering and that’s okay. I surrender to the effect it has on me and how it brings out worse than baseline frenzy. Surrender to accepting that this is happening and it’s okay. Isnread of judging and resisting myself for feeling extra frenzied because of this person. Understanding this and allowing myself to drop to this level will result In letting myself…


    Change direction. Roll away. Roll within. Roll back home. Wherever is safe.

    In order to roll to safety I must first stop and drop. And to end the above example – roll could be – sending husband a discrete text saying – I feel triggered I’m going to take the dog for a walk and get air. It could be myself announcing we need to head out. It could be anything. But knowing there is a need to find safety. And that safety DOES exist. This extremely triggered state leads to all sorts of frenzy. I am able to change it. (Obviously using this wife as an example. Ideally she would never have and now never will come over!)

    There it is: stop drop and roll.

    • This reply was modified 5 days, 17 hours ago by  Cali Chica.


    Dear Cali Chica:

    “Please remind me how I have found a way to cut that line”- every time you feel what you referred to for so  long as baseline anxiety, it is fear + running away, or anger + running away. Ex. that Friday, husband lying on the grass in Central Park, getting up complaining about bugs, you get annoyed, that is, angry, noticed it and said nothing- saying nothing to him was that cutting of the line.

    Problem is we experience this: fear+ running away/ rushing or anger+ running away/ rushing hundreds or thousands of times per day, sometimes a few times per minute. But we keep going.. keep going with that baseline anxiety which is fear or anger +rushing again and again and again.

    Images that we see or imagine, thoughts that occur to us, memories, sounds and words we hear… many of these case that dynamic (the italicized) all through our waking hours while working, while just sitting there, and it is what this baseline anxiety is.

    It is possible to notice this dynamic and cut that line repeatedly throughout the day, not just in certain circumstances and at certain times, starting with the first hour of waking up,  before you leave your apartment in a rush.

    All this will probably become clearer to me tomorrow.

    I didn’t read your second post before writing the above and just read a bit of it (I am not very focused and will need to reread it tomorrow). I will reread tomorrow morning.

    (I am not clear right now about the interaction between fear and anger).

    Be back in about 12 hours. Good night, amazing Cali Chica.



    • This reply was modified 5 days, 14 hours ago by  anita.

    Cali Chica

    Dear Anita,

    I look forward to your reply. I have this deep feeling that this topic – the cutting of the line between fear and frenzy. The link to frenzied behavior will be useful to us both. It is a good feeling that we are doing this work together – on our own in our separate lives, as well as in our “journaling” here.

    I am heading to a “big fat Indian wedding.” Yes wedding season has begun. 4 day family wedding (by family I always mean my husband’s family – as you likely know). His cousin is getting married and we are very close (he has many female cousins from the age of 20-40 and we all have a great time). Thus – starting this evening there will be celebrations until Sunday. I look forward to spending some quality time with my in laws, cousins, and most of all my husband.

    I will circle back on Sunday. I look forward to whatever is written in the meantime. I smile as I write this – that deep tenderness for my dear friend Anita.


    Cali Chica

    Oh by the way- the family wedding We are attending is in London. Hello from the UK.

    Talk soon 🙂



    Dear Cali Chica:

    London, my goodness! Have a good time there. Your feeling of tenderness is reciprocated, my dear friend Cali Chica.

    What I figured about our latest, most important topic, is that you and I are not suffering from an ongoing anxiety, as in every second, every minute. We are suffering from frequent triggering, or frequent activation of anxiety, many times per minute, or per hour, many, many times per day. The cutting of the line between fear/ anger and the running/ rushing is key, but it is to be done not only at certain times of the day (evening vs morning, let’s say) or in certain circumstances (at home vs at work) but all the time because the activation happens countless times throughout our waking hours.

    Let’s take your stop-drop-and-roll post from yesterday:

    “it is hard to n the middle of responding just stop. It feels like a pressure to have to continue”- it is hard to stop while running. Once an object is in motion it is inclined to continue the motion, Newton’s Law paraphrased.

    Examples of triggers/ activations of the fear/anger-> running:

    1. A person told you: “oh I don’t really like NYC..”, it “makes me feel defensive or judged”, that means fear was activated, and next you run, your brain does and makes itself known by speaking words through your mouth, as well as expressing itself in your face and body, tensing up, probably.

    2. You have the man and his horrific wife for dinner, her behavior, her facial expressions, her voice and whatnot activate your… fear (of your mother), next, you run around the kitchen and the table, “asking everyone how they’re doing” etc.

    Anger comes into play there as well, because often when we feel fear, we feel anger next.



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