While smiling…

BreathingDear friends,

I want to thank you for your messages of encouragement. It amazes me to think anyone reads my ‘diary’ in the first place, but when you care enough to post to me, it boosts me up. A lot. Rest assured, I am woefully tired of crying and am making every effort to find happy thoughts. I do have some. They are anxiously waiting in the wings for their cue to dance and sing their way into my day. They confidently know the play they want starring roles in, but I’m the director and it seems I’m casting currently for a Dostoevsky-like tragedy instead of Singin’ in the Rain.

And so I confess today is as harsh as any. I cannot quiet the voice reminding me that ‘I’m no good’. I can’t quell the longing for what was or what I’d hoped would be. I cannot stem the fresh rush of sadness. I fear sitting still and moving at the same time. I want to talk but keep quiet for fear I’ll be misunderstood. I want to be held in arms that put no conditions on me, but push all arms away. I want to never rise from corpse pose. I want to sit by the sea but do not make my way there for fear of being seen. I want to die. I want to live. Most of all, I want home.

We assume a lot about what motivates us and others. We see what we want to see and seldom muster the courage to peak behind the veil. Is it because we know it is there the dark heart beats? Probably. But here’s the rub, it rests right beside its bright companion heart. The two are inseparable. We do our best to keep them a part, though, don’t we? We chase extremes so we can boast to feeling the heights, yet intentionally numb and run to escape our lows. We want to be on the edge and take the edge off, too. Such complex things we human beings are.

Sitting for meditation this morning, I posed a question I ask when I need to sort myself. “If I had all the money and all the time in the world, what would my life look like? What would I do, where would I live?” The answer is always the same. I want to do what I’m doing except for Just for Today (the gifting org I wish to found) which I can’t quite figure out how to kick off without funding. I know where I’d live – both here in BC, and the UK – but secure in my own space in these places, not bouncing between houses owned by others.

In my mind’s eye my life has looked the same for years and segments of my imaginings have manifested, if only fleetingly. I do strive to involve myself in activities and expand my community when possible, but being transient restricts a deeper commitment. I believe I’m working to fix this. The biggest obstacle I face is poverty. It’s exhausting and depletes the enthusiasm and resilience required for involvement. I believe I’m facing that issue, too, though it’s slow to correct.

So, at the end of the day, or meditation in my case, I know what makes me feel most alive. I just need to get aligned to make it all flow together. Apparently I’m creating barriers and don’t have the wherewithal to readily break them down. Still, I have faith in my dreams because I’ve touched parts of them and know the joy they bring. I do hold to those feelings when possible.

One aspect of the “dream” is how much I want to be loved. It’s a tall order when I struggle to love myself. My self-destructive patterns are powerful and regardless of being more aware of them, they get the best me which is horribly painful. Some change is easier than others, yes?

How do we succeed at anything when our trajectory seems faulty? I’m both the problem and the solution, right now posing obstacles to my heart’s desire. I’m outspoken and brash, quick to interject when silence would be the wiser course. I judge. I’m programmed for the outrageous. I can appear bigger than life but in fact, live a very tiny one. I’m a fabricator – a liar whose deceptions are so convincing, few catch me up. This persona does not serve me well. It makes me almost impossible to get close to. It means I’m a fraud.

Redo365 was begun to address the above, and I’ve changed a great deal. However, like many behaviours, there is carry-over. My conscious script is well rehearsed, certainly, but the more destructive sub-conscious one is embedded and, I might go so far as to say, virulent. After all, it’s been decades, maybe several lives, in the making so what happens when I open myself is that, in almost every case, I end up misunderstood because I anticipate failure. I ask, “How can anyone love this?” Then, as the connection begins to sever, panic ensues. I default to my defensive self in an effort to salvage what is being lost. Communication breaks down further as I criticise myself and others, lapsing into self-pity and cynicism. In the context of a relationship, these behaviours sound the death knell. I’m no longer likable, self-reliant, or interesting. I destroy the essence of anything worthwhile, including my own compassionate heart. Then I can say, “See? You’re unlovable.”

That’s why I hurt so badly. It’s never about the other, it’s always about what we do to ourselves. Loving is never, not ever, wrong! Opening to another is hard. Showing who you are to someone is terrifying, and it doesn’t always go well. Especially when you’re trying to hide things you’re convinced are too ugly to let anyone see. Even at this age, when I should have it together, I don’t. Of course, the whole “age thingy” is another kettle of tofu, isn’t it? I should write about that, how the voices love to wax non-stop about how I’m too old for this or that. Shit, when does this self-criticism, self-doubt, and unworthiness let up? Maybe the Grim Reaper knows the answer.

So here’s my wish today. For just a second, hold yourself with no judgment, no complaint or critique, no harsh words, and no doubt. For just a second, picture your heart beating, unconditionally and faithfully, and smile your thanks. For just a second, picture the people you want to hold and only those you want to hold. Put no conditions on them, do not think, rather feel your love for them and smile your thanks. For just a second, let gratitude enter your heart. Let it fill you. Smile your thanks. And, just for a second, believe you can heal and forgive and appreciate endlessly, if only for a second while smiling in thanks.

Until tomorrow my friends…

 

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