Part 42-D:
Megalomania
and the Making of
the Mexico-LeBaron Mind

Circa 1964: My mother Esther LeBaron Spencer

Leaving a cult is a lot like
driving at night with your headlights on:
You may only see a few feet in front of you,
but you can make the whole journey that way.
Stephany SpencerLeBaron
(Takeoff from E. L. Doctorow):

“Writing a novel is like driving a car at night.
You can only see as far as your headlights,
but you can make the whole trip that way.

“You don’t have to see where you’re going;
you don’t have to see your destination
or everything you will pass along the way.
You just have to see two or three feet ahead of you.”
E. L. Doctorow: *

* “This is right up there with the best advice
on writing–or life–I have ever heard.”
Anne Lamott: Bird by Bird:
Some Instructions on Writing and Life

Reiterating part of the theme in my previous blog, Mama couldn’t handle not being “the best,” “most perfect,” and “greatest woman” she fantasized she was—the greatest woman in the world. (That sure left me and her other nine daughters out to dry; not to mention her sisters and mother—my grandmother Maud, LOL!)

At times, shame, guilt, facing reality, or losing her fabulized identity sent fanatic Ma off the deep end. It was too much for her to be other than the perfect, all-powerful person she fabricated herself to be. [1]

Caught in black-or-white, all-or-nothing thinking, she believed she needed to be perfectlyperfect in order to be acceptable; otherwise, she was lost/ no good/ a nobody. She lacked concepts necessary to think otherwise. [2]

It wasn’t in Mama’s religious indoctrination and understanding that we’re only here to grow, learn, and develop. In other words, she didn’t know how much she didn’t know. Didn’t know she didn’t have to be perfect, control others, nor out-do others.

Didn’t know she didn’t have to be the best; didn’t have to be somebody other than herself, e.g., “the queen,” in order to be loved, accepted, respected—and “go to heaven.”

Mama never knew she didn’t have to be in control of everyone and everything; she only had to love and accept herself…just as she was. To her, “loving herself” seemed wicked, worldly, and altogether selfish! She was raised to believe God wanted us to be selfless; i.e., to only think of others.

She was in denial about the fact that she wasn’t “selfless.”
Nor did she know loving and accepting herself as she was, was all
the Higher Power expects! God—whatever your understanding of God-–doesn’t expect us to be perfect. No human should expect it, either! Still, Mom believed perfection was all that was acceptable. Everything else was in her blindspot.

It took more integrity than Mother could muster to face the reality of
who and what she was. It was easier to live in a dreamworld.
But for the grace of God, there go I.” [3]

(Continued March 5, 2020:
Part 42-E:
“Megalomania
and the Making of the Mexico-LeBaron Mind”)

[1]. en.wikipedia.org › wiki › Maslow’s_hierarchy_of_needs
Maslow’s hierarchy of needs – Wikipedia


Maslow’s hierarchy of needs is a theory in psychology proposed by Abraham Maslow in his 1943 paper “A Theory of Human Motivation” in Psychological ..

[2]. BRADSHAW ON: THE FAMILY: A NEW WAY OF CREATING SOLID SELF-ESTEEM
BY JOHN BRADSHAW

[3].

Alfred Adler’s Personality Theory and Personality Types …Alfred Adler’s Personality Theory and Personality Types. The question of what drives us—what great force underlies our motivation as individuals, propelling us  …

3 thoughts on “Part 42-D: Megalomania and the Making of the Mexico-LeBaron Mind

  1. This perfectionism probably stems from a legal take on Matthew 5:48

    “Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect.”

    I know I suffered mentally/emotionally knowing I was very much less than perfect.

    Liked by 1 person

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