acceptance · adulthood · commitment · growth · letting go · life · self-support · willingness

Grown-upness

I was on the phone yesterday with a friend/mentor of mine.
I’d asked her for an informational interview, with the knowledge that I had no
idea what I was going to ask her – I’d let her know that in the email, too. She
accepted anyway, and on the phone we were, as I sat beneath the dome of the
downtown SF shopping center during my lunch break from the temp gig.
She knows much of my story and development over the last few
years, and works in a field to help people, and, most importantly to me, seems
to have some semblance of balance between work, creativity, and life. I thought
she’d be a good place to “start.”
I told her the 2nd thing that came up at the
“money meditation” on Monday. The 2nd question was “Do I (Molly)
fear you (money)?” The answer was, Yes, because I mean responsibility.
Oh Responsibility! How I’ve run from you!
Over the course of my conversation with my friend, she
reflected back to me that it sounds like I want to be powerful, without
building or holding or being the vessel for that power. I do want to do great
things (not like, ooh famous – just like, ooh cool), and, I have not wanted to
really take the ownership of what it might take to get there. See,
particularly, Magical Accidental Orgasm.
There is no one coming to live my life for me. There is no one coming to take
the risks and chances and changes that I need to make in my life and attitude
for me. It’s up to me.
Or it’s not. I can choose or not to take the reigns of my
life. I can choose or not to take the steps to holding responsibility for
myself.
This responsibility thing, my aversion to it, came up
earlier this year, in a workshop run by the very same friend. See, I have these
old associations with responsibility. That it means more than I am able to
handle. That’s what it meant when I was young – having to do things a child
should not have to do, things that an adult ought to have been doing, but the
adults in my life were not quite able to do that. So, I did. And I resented it,
and I was burdened by it, and I’ve carried my resentment and fear of
responsibility here through and to my adulthood.
Adulthood. That word came up yesterday in our conversation
too. “Adult.” “Grown-up.” If I want grown-up things, which I very much do, then
I have to learn to be a grown-up. Sure, I’m 30, but that’s no indication of
adulthood.
Things that grown-ups have — a job, a car, a house, a
relationship, stability, vacation — well, they earn these things by showing
up for themselves in a responsible way. My same friend had worked as a house
cleaner for ten years before coming to her pursuit of her current profession.
She also said, basically, nothing can grow in the dark. I am
ripe with resentment, self-pity, longing, entitlement, and self-centeredness
because of this ongoing rejection of the mantle of grown-up. I grasp
at things I think I want, but I’m not willing to firm the foundation to get
there – to mix the mortar, lay the bricks. Chop wood, carry sticks. That’s
where I need to be at. Very simply, I need to lay hold of qualities and actions
that I have tried to avoid.
The truth is that I have no idea what it would be
like to take responsibility for myself. I’ve churned along at this hamstrung
pace and mind-set for so long, I honestly don’t know. I’ve been talking here
some about how “grace” and gifts from the Universe have been incredibly lovely,
but that they don’t help me to build self-esteem around jobs and work and …
being a responsible adult, basically.
To warm up to the idea of being a grown-up. Yes, very much I
want to be one – I want what they seem to have. But what I see, I suppose is
the externals. What I haven’t seen, necessarily, is all the work they have put in to get there. To do what is necessary. I
haven’t done what is necessary. I’ve done everything else, I’ve danced around
the entry to that path for a decade, and belly-ached, Why can’t I get there?
Why is the door closed to me? It’s not closed. Never has been. I’ve been
terrified of what it means to begin to walk down it. But the truth is, and
forgive me, I got a cat a year and a half ago. She is a monument to my warming to commitment – has
this responsibility, has responsibility for this life, hers, created any burden
or pain in my life? Not in the slightest, and in fact, has brought untold and
unforeseen joy.
This is what I too imagine that taking on responsibility for
my own life may bring. Sure, I imagine it’ll be a little different, seeing as
it’s mine, and my brain is such a lovely chatter factory. But, maybe not.
Maybe, the doors will swing open as I take one step onto the path of
grown-upness. Maybe, simply, I’ll feel better knowing that I’m on the path at
all. 

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s