In the past several weeks, I’ve felt a surge of energy coming from what I’m seeing in the news, social media, and people I know. The surge is like a wave, with the wind’s friction over the water’s surface, compelling it to the shore.
Times, like waves, are changing and flowing towards the beach. Slowly but then all at once. When it crests, I can only hope it will be beautiful.
What will wash ashore?
What will wash away?
What will we see rising to the top of the tallest wave?
Will we see our better selves reflected up there?
Life is fluid. Always moving, trying to fill any space it’s found itself in, like water.
I’d like to believe that this energy is the start of a movement. Even a small one. Even if it’s just a tiny spark that begins in a few hearts, slowly setting people free.
Free of misunderstood and barely tolerable guilt that seems to lurch behind us from infancy. I don’t remember a time when I wasn’t worried over letting someone down, feeling that any action I took might hurt someone or worse, not affect them in the least.
There are so many perceived expectations of ourselves, no one could measure up. What kind of life did my parent’s dream for me and how can I not let them down? Adversely, there are people that are just hoping and praying that they can escape the confines of baggage dumped on them from birth.
Please hear me when I say, it’s not yours to carry. None of it. Good intentions, bad intentions, and straight up apathy towards who you might “turn out to be”, is not a load meant to be shouldered.
It’s a starting place of assessment. Your heart will tell you when it’s found something that’s “yours”. All the rest, it belongs in the past. It belongs in old polaroids in a trunk somewhere in your parent’s house.
Now you are all grown up (most of us) and trying to reconcile that nagging guilt that you don’t know where it comes from. You may be like me and have folded all of that in on itself for so long you can just feel it all the time, like a tightness in your chest.
It’s not what you think. The guilt isn’t about letting them down, but letting yourself down. Bottom line is that one day, it will be your last day. Yours. Not anyone else’s.
Did you allow yourself truly passionate reciprocal love?
Did you show and give enough of yourself to have left a mark on this world? – Even if it’s only in the eyes of your children one day.
What kind of mark do you want to leave?
Did you ever find that place and time that you felt like you just took the biggest lung full of breath you’d taken since birth? That kind of peace?
No matter your gender/sexuality identity, religious convictions, familial circumstance, financial circumstance, physical circumstance; realize, please, that those are only parts of the whole.
Your whole being needs to find acknowledgement in this life.
If at a point you feel like it’s all wrong and you need to take a step back or even just walk away, it may not be possible. I want to be able to say, do what you have to do, no matter what. I can’t say that, because it won’t help.
I always remember this: “Wherever you go, there you are.”
Dramatically changing your surroundings, relationships, etc, will still leave you with whatever baggage you have packed up in your heart.
So, even changing your life drastically won’t quiet that inner voice?
Your perspective will quiet that raging bitch of voice in your head. I’ve named my voice, “Debbie Downer”. She always tells me that other people have it worse, don’t expect much because that’s what you’ll get, don’t trust or count on anyone. I mean, she’s a real bitch.
She really gets put in her place though, when I focus on the moment.
I want to really emphasize the word “moment”. I mean take a second every day to freeze your movements. Look at your hands? What are they working on? How does your body feel? Is there a breeze? Is it sunny or raining?
I often let my mind wander, no matter what I’m doing. I can be watching a completely engrossing action flick and my mind can still be racing. Our 21st century brains are hardwired now to take in waaaaaaaaaay more information than is needed. It’s like a survival instinct, long dormant.
Back to “moment”. I started doing that a couple of times a day. My head can positively buzz with the chaos surrounding me in my home, in my town, with my child, with my obligations, being tethered to social media every waking hour….. Ugh, stressful to even read isn’t it?
A couple of times a day, I like to pick a task that I don’t hate entirely, and really focus on my movements, forcibly focusing all of my energy into the sensations I’m getting and how cathartic it feels doing so. Washing dishes usually is something I try this with. The water, the bubbles, the motions, the heat, the satisfaction of an empty sink.
I like to gather little moments like this one as fuel. Thoughts to go back to when things get too much. Being present in the moment. Feeling grounded in this life and in your body. Not just trapped in your mind.
When the buzz starts to return, I quietly remind myself that I’m already doing something and there’s no need to feel the pressure of the entire rest of my day in this moment. It won’t help me get it done any faster. (unless you need to go pick up your children, by all means, please don’t leave them at school. LOL)
Don’t lock yourself into a self-made prison. Anything can start to feel confining if there is no joy in it.
Back to this energy. I hope the energy that I am sensing is a motivation of sorts to find my joy. Find my spark. As Ingrid Nilsen so bravely put it today, “Have my best chance.”
My best chance at feeling whole. Feeling acknowledged. Feeling invaluable. Feeling at peace.
Listen to your spirit. Not Debbie. Debbie is a bitch.