I picked up a book that I had started reading a few months ago and put down and this is the quote that jumped out at me:
“So whatever you do, just do it, without expecting anyone’s help. Don’t spoil your effort by seeking for shelter. Protect your-self and grow upright to the sky; that is all.” Shunryu Suzuki- Not always so
It was like slap in the face…the good kind. After I got over the hurt from two years ago, I wanted to escape and after that I wanted someone to fill the hole in my heart. I have been on the spiritual path and through enough therapy to know that this is my work to do but the illusion that another person could help and heal that emptiness is so seductive.
I was certain that I was leaving this town as soon as I could. That this place was nothing more than a lay over to heal my wounds and then move on to the promised land…wherever that might be. But it didn’t happen that way, not because there were not opportunities or because I didn’t try (tip to Portland) but my heart would not buy it.
Then I embarked on the dating distraction. This was highly entertaining but there came a moment when I realized that I was not willing to risk anything so I stopped pretending. And then I met someone. Of course being me it had to be the most complicated and impossible person to be with. I came to realize slowing that was a large part of the attraction. Don’t get me wrong he had lots of other wonderful qualities but the nature of the whole situation suited my melancholy nature far too well. And in the end it proved to be the impossible situation I was seeking. Minus two points for walking into fire knowingly.
I know your thinking (she’s at it again rambling about god knows what again) but when I read that quote this morning and it was like something broke loose inside me. All this time I have wanted to survive, over come, forget, start over but I never loved myself enough to protect myself. I put up walls and shut people out but that was only to avoid pain it was not to protect myself.
When I think about how I would begin to do that it seems hard. I am in danger from no one but myself and in many ways it is harder to counter than someone hitting me. My boss complimented me the other day and I shifted the credit to my team and she said “Amanda, take a little credit for your work.” It is so engrained to see myself as pass-able at best that I’m not sure where to begin pause the voices in my head, to protect myself from me.
But…I am going to try. Try to love my life because its mine, just the way it is. This holiday season was particularly hard, mostly because I didn’t make the effort to lie for other people’s comfort. When they asked if I was alone I said yes. When they asked if I was seeing my family I said no. When they asked if I was okay/ happy I mostly told the truth and said I didn’t know. If I had lied they would have gone on their blissful holiday way for the most part. But by telling the truth it gave me the opportunity to look at my feelings and choices. It hurt but it was honest.
As I go forward into this new year, I hope to be kinder and more forgiving to myself. I think it is a lesson I will be learning my whole life: how to love me.
I have spent the past 5 months waiting to see how my life would change and turn. I knew it was unlikely that it would remain the same but giving up that life was so much harder than anything I have ever been through. But now as the last embers fade I look at whats left and find myself surprised.
I have a job, a place to stay and my two cats. That is a good place to start but my heart wants more than mere existing. I miss creating, I miss adventure, I miss trusting myself enough to try. So here I go off into the world of finding me…again. In a way it is funny because I spent the better part of three years in therapy working on my issues. And I know that I would not be doing so well if not for all that work in session and on the yoga mat.
But how do you let yourself dream a new life? For a while I told myself that I wasn’t staying so I intentionally avoided getting to know people and making any connections with this place. But now that I have decided to stay my world is shifting again. I live with a really easy-going girl and for the first time in my life no one care what I’m doing. There are no lectures, pregnant pauses or disappointed looks. And at this juncture in my life I need that ability to stumble my way through this as each day finds me. That is not to say I’m reckless with abandon but I have bad days too and its high time I started admitting it. No one expects that level of accommodation accept me.
So why is she going on and on about this? Because I am making some changes for the good. Yesterday I finally got around to researching yoga studios (not many) and gyms in the area. Then I went and checked out my local YMCA, they have a really nice one here and I ended up joining. Then I looked into places of worship and there are a couple of possibilities.
I am eating better and trying to be conscious of my choices. I have a friend coming for the holiday weekend but not until Monday so I think I am going on an over night trip just for me. I haven’t taken any photos since I have been here and for me that is quite telling. But it has also been the truth, it hurt too much to look at all the beautiful things around me when my life was such a mess. Now that doors are closing and I am choosing there is room for light and the loveliness of the world again.
So here’s to choosing to “really” live again and not sleep walk through my life.
Through the Creator in me, I AM:
Finding peace, clarity, motivation, power and openness.
With these gifts I Will:
write, expand, create, and become a part of my community.
Today I Will:
Enjoy my work, stay positive, and have pride in my accomplishments.
I wrote this 10/04/2010 before we moved. I happened to come across it this morning while adding a new entry to my “law of attraction journal.” I felt it really speak to me. I have been in a bit of a rut and overwhelmed since we moved but I felt like this was telling me to step up to the next level of who and what I am going to be. That the time for excuses has past and not it is a time of action and conviction. I don’t know how this will affect today or days to come but I found it very comforting.
It is interesting that our words can be messages not only for the moment but to bring us back into focus later on. Have a great day.
The first time I heard this song in church I cried and I hope that I do every time I hear it because it speaks the truth about what we are able to do in this world when we feel overwhelmed and helpless.