Curiosity

Change/Transformation, Hard Stuff, It's Personal, Obstacles/Challenges, Reflection, Uncategorized, Writing

Today, for a split second, I was not afraid. I wasn’t anxious or worried or catastrophizing; daydreaming or future – tripping. I wasn’t fantasizing or wishing.  You know, all those things you do when some new person or thing shows up and you’re scared as fuck? When you’re so terrified you wake up every 67.5 minutes, mind chasing this or that rabbit, refusing to calm the hell down and rest itself?

I’ve had a lot of those days and nights lately.  November was a hellacious month, and I may or may not be through the worst of it.  A lot happened in the last couple of years and, as it turns out, November was the month it all vomited itself back in my face.  Well, stuff from the last couple of years and maybe a few other significant events in my life. You kind of lose track when you’re averaging 14 minutes of sleep every 5 hours or so, and lose water constantly because you can’t stop crying.

Yesterday, for the briefest moment, I was simply curious about what was in front of me.  I wasn’t looking for the next thing or assessing the current thing, judging or punishing myself, or wishing for something different.  I was open to the possibility of whatever was in my life At That Moment.

It didn’t last long.  My thousand-footed emotional Luggage suddenly reappeared, and curiosity was swept away in the wash of debris and detritus it drags along behind.  It’s hard to remember how it felt, now, with all my thoughts and feelings and judgments and barriers back in place – hard to recall that feeling of lightness, of effortless wonder and potential.  It’s hard not to be sad that I am not more naturally, easily, and gracefully in that state more often, that I have lost so much of the delight in exploring.

I wonder if I need to forgive my younger self for growing up, becoming an adult – protective of my tender and vulnerable insides.  Some days, I feel like such a cliche – growing older, growing thicker and slower and more hardened to what life offers.  It is more difficult to find the will to open, to intentionally seek the new and unknown, to trust that I am resilient and supported. It is much easier to simply explore the known a bit more, tell myself I’m digging deeper, not wider, but that’s not entirely true.

Even those of us who seek change, who actively work for change, are afraid of risk, of pain.  I doubt that I will ever be fully comfortable with taking risks, but that little taste of simple curiosity helped.  If I can get there once, I can get there again.

Motivating Giraffe and FromTheLaundryRoom today had posts that I found helpful and comforting.

curious

Conversations with Life, #3

Hard Stuff, Life, Obstacles/Challenges, Peace/Conflict, Social Justice, Uncategorized, Writing

Life,

It’s M again and today, I want to kill someone, or die.  No. Neither of those is true, but I’m consumed, eaten with rage at another round of mass murders, this time impacting people I know and care about.  All these mass gun murders deeply touch my soul, but this was in my home state, in my college community, and it punched me in the heart.

I consider myself a reasonable person, compassionate, and willing to see all sides of an issue, but I’m done.  I’m done trying to understand the perspective of people who seem to not care that guns are used daily to murder and terrorize hundreds and thousands of innocent people in this country.  I’m done with the bullying and threatening and open-carry intimidation when legislators and citizens try to get even minimal gun control laws on the books.

There is no reason here.  There is no attempt to meet in the middle, no attempt to understand suffering, or even agreement that sometimes, sometimes, an individual’s right to carry a weapon is trumped by another individual’s right to simply live.

How do I move forward so gorged with hatred and fear?  All I feel capable of doing is violence.

Dear M,

There is no reasoning with fear.  And there is no way to understand another person’s particular, personal terror.  There is also nothing that says you have to try.  It is your choice to try or not, and there are consequences either way. Your ability to move through this time may feel compromised and it is up to you to take the necessary steps to help yourself cope in a way that aligns with who you are.

You are not hatred. You are not rage or fear or abject, gibbering terror.  None of you are but many of you don’t remember that.  Many of you live in that profound, unconscious state of terror every day.  It is exhausting for every single one of you living on that planet, but that is the nature of the human condition, and your greatest individual challenge.

Remembering that you are NOT a being made of fear, cowering in a darkened cave is the hardest act and the greatest.

Always,

Life

That nameless feeling

Blergh, Change/Transformation, It's Personal, Life, Obstacles/Challenges, Reflection, Uncategorized, Writing

You know that feeling you get when there’s a lot of shit moving around, change is coming, transitions are pending, and you know it’s going to work out but it still feels crappy?  It feels like you can’t tolerate one more disruption, no matter how minor, or you’ll never crawl to your feet again – that feeling?  Oh, and as soon as you’re careless enough to say “oh cheezus – I can’t handle one more goddam thing or I’ll die!” the spiteful goddesses/gods/FlyingSpaghettiMonster sends just one more thing – just to see if you really WILL die this time?

That feeling.  That awful, indescribable, shrinking, contracting, solidifying, small, helpless, useless, no-one-cares-about-me-and-i-hate-my-own-goddam-self feeling?

Why is the only remedy for that hateful feeling to ride it out?  To fucking sit with all that discomfort and agony of waiting and ever-increasing feelings of worthlessness and shame and unwantedness?

WHYWHYWHYWHYWHY??????

In all of our human inventiveness and creativeness and blahblahblahblah, how have we NEVER come up with a better solution than “ride it out”?  I’m not counting all those things that will eventually kill you – drugs, alcohol, overeating, overfucking, punching and kicking shit, beating people up, stealing things, and all that other crap.  I mean a genuine, bona-fide, non-lethal way to spare ourselves all that unpleasantness.

Oh, and I’m also not talking about all that bullshit meditation, “it’s all just energy,” don’t resist, let it flow through you, the-sooner-you-learn-to-accept-the-easier-it-will-be, do some yoga, hike in nature, get a friend, get a lover, cook something delicious and share it, and all that other HIDEOUS well-meaning but enraging advice!  Keep your goody-goody, namby-pamby do-right-by-the-world smarminess to yourself buddy.

There is REAL SUFFERING happening here.

Well, when I say “real” I mean “real to me.”  I don’t mean “real” as in I’m a refugee, lost a child, am destitute or homeless, have to sell myself for money, or other people are selling me for money, being tortured, kidnapped, or killed, having to find food for me and my kids at every meal, living in a war zone, have to choose between food and medicine, suffering a crippling, wasting, painful disease, having to care for others constantly with no respite, have no friends, family, or loved ones, am living in my car, or on a landfill, am watching people suffer or die daily, am elderly and have almost no income and no family, live in a medical facility with no outside contact, am disabled and have limited access to care and support, am a vet living with PTSD and don’t know how to get help, and…

I think I should stop writing now.