fear · friendship · health · honesty · love · self-care · vulnerability

Welcome To The Jungle–We’ve Got Fun & Games

Dear Blog-Reading Community & The Inside of Molly’s
Head,
Don’t Freak Out.
Dear Suspicious Lump Under My Right Shoulder Blade,
Don’t be an asshole.
Be a mutated muscle, embarrassing adult acne, a rogue tooth stem cell that formed in the wrong place in utero; even be a benign
cyst that I have to go through biopsy limbo to confirm. Just don’t be an
asshole.
Today, I go to the doctor. I am grateful and lucky to have
the community who shows up for me, available at 6:30am-text notice. One of them
is coming with me to the doctor visit–though I didn’t ask, I just “wanted to inform someone who isn’t my mom and wouldn’t freak out,” she offered. I wanted to
ask, but asking for help… especially help to attend to an amorphous, “Am I just
paranoid?” symptom…
Yesterday at work, I spoke with someone who also has
intimate experience with things like this. She said, it’s not paranoid. It’s
not hypochondriac. We have reasons, and good ones. She said she gets alarmed
too. And so, what do we do? We get things checked out.
I was trying to play it cool. Sure, I’ve just been really tired; it’s normal, you’ve
seen my lists of activities. It’s
nuhhh-thing. And MAYBE IT IS. But you know how I tongue the other
side of “maybe.”
So, I went to get labs drawn yesterday afternoon. My blood
is all normal. Leukemia Negative.
But, this lump. I noticed a few days ago.
Is this too much information? Is this too soon to tell you
anything? Is this just me mental-masturbating onto the page to diffuse some of my worry by spewing it onto you?
Maybe.
The same friend who will accompany me today once said,
“Don’t Worry Twice.” It’s the best advice I’ve ever been given, and a thousand
miles toward following it.
But, I remember it. I try to do that.
I’m as worried as the situation warrants. Which is, hmm,
this is suspicious. I am not a doctor, I should get this checked out. The end.
It’s why I got my blood tested finally; and glad that I did. It’s why I’ll see a doctor today, who may really seriously in fact tell me, this is just a really bad zit
under your skin, Moll. Use some ProActive and get on with your life.
The thought that occurred to me this morning, waking up and
deciding to get this zit-in-sheep’s-clothing checked out, was “Rule 62.” Don’t
Take Yourself So Damned Seriously
.
A thousand thoughts go through one’s head when….
No.
One thought went through my head when, yesterday morning, I
wrote my blog to you, got ready for work, and broke down crying in my closet. I’m
so tired of being brave.
The thought that follows that is: I won’t go through this
again.
The thought that follows that is: Of course I will.
Because tired of it or not, bone-weary or not, to gain a
year of hell, perhaps five years of health, perhaps one perhaps twenty, I would do it.
I hate that I would. I hate that I love this all so much. I
hate that I have such a burning, singeing ambition to do more. I hate that I
want to have my own life story to hand to someone to type. To have someone
record and note my life, my legacy, my
experience of living a full and long life.
I hate that I love myself and most especially you and all of
this so damned fucking much, that I would do whatever it took to stay.
And then, of course, I don’t take myself so damned
seriously, I eat my daily eggs, and I don’t worry twice.
Dear Blog-Reading Community & The Inside of Molly’s
Head,
Don’t freak out. 
Reach out. Follow up. And get back to the business of being awesome. No.Matter.What.

P.S. It is a nice change from the 25 y.o.- should I/shouldn’t I argument. So there’s that. #SilverLining

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adulthood · commitment · growth · honesty · integrity · progress · recovery · responsibility · work

Bollocks.

Through a series of work I’m doing right now, I sent out a
stack of three letters to former employers yesterday, each with a variation on the theme – I was an
unprofessional employee, I am sorry for how I behaved, and I aim to be more responsible in my
jobs now and going forward.
The messed up, fucked up, I-don’t-want-to-do-this part of all
that is… that now I have to stick to my word – the word about being a better
employee going forward. This means, fewer endless hours on facebook while at
work (if any at all); it means taking my breaks so I’m refreshed to actually do
work instead of sit and stare at whatever I’m doing; it means being efficient in
my work. I means, basically, doing what I’m paid to be doing.
I don’t like that. And, yet, I know how completely necessary
it is. I’ve been talking here about responsibility lately, how I don’t want it, but that I do want the things that come to people who are responsible – in their
work, extracurricular, and home lives. So, if I want what they have, then I
must do what they do.
I don’t have to.
Sure, I can say one thing and do another, but in truth, that feels, obviously,
worse. Better to not say anything at all, and continue to slide along on
half-steam, than to say that I’m making changes so that I don’t slide along on
half-steam and then not do it.
Most recently, having the (rated G) dalliance with the
married man, I got to see very acutely where I was either going to stick to the
letter of my word or not. I’ve had to make many an amends to women whose
boyfriends, and, once, a fiancé, with whom I’ve dallied. I told them each,
specifically, that I was making changes in my life so that I don’t act like
that anymore – that I was sorry for how I behaved, and that I wouldn’t do it
again.

So, when I began talking in the flirtatious way with this man about a month
ago, I knew – I felt – how off this was.
How against everything that I’d set up over the last few years this was. How,
basically, I was breaking my promise to each of them, and indeed to myself –
having promised myself that I wouldn’t behave in ways around men
that would make me feel bad about myself, or guilty, or ashamed.
And so, I stopped the dalliance with the man, and am now newly engaged in a body of work to help extricate and sever and lay to rest the last
of the beliefs and behaviors that influence me to believe that this is all that
is available to me, or what I deserve.
So, here I am, now, about work. About telling these folks
that I fucked up in the past, and I’m trying to do better. That, specifically,
I will be more responsible and work with more integrity. And, I know, now, that
I’ll have to stick to it. I know how it feels from that recent experience to
come right up against something I said I wouldn’t do – I know how icky it
feels, and against my morals. And so, now, I must take that same self-line into the professional world.
And I hate it.
I know it’s good for me. I know it’ll open doors for me, and
duh, it’s the right thing to do. But, Oh! My Beautiful Wickedness!, I don’t “want” to. Luckily, it doesn’t quite matter
whether I want to or not. Pain will always push me in the direction forward. I
don’t want to feel the pain of being a hypocrite, so I will work better. I
don’t want to feel ashamed that I’m not living to my word, so I’ll stop
accepting jobs that I know I’ll work half-steam at.
I don’t like it. It feels like an entirely new level of
adulthood to go toward this direction of integrity. But it’s necessary, and
it’s time.
I have no doubt that the opening up of this line of vision
will amount to something more in my professional life. I have no doubt that by working to a better standard of duty that I’ll feel better about myself and
less like a fraud. I know that this will take me somewhere different internally
and externally. But, still, it sucks.
It’s like this is what teenagers experience when they get
into their 20s maybe. Or, these days, 20somethings into their 30s. I’d love to learn this
now. It’s late, but it is certainly a better late than never.
I also wrote an email last night to a recent former employer to
apologize for how I ended my employment there, and to ask for clarity around
some money they gave me to pay off the last of my braces when I had them a
few years ago. He said that they had dental, so it was covered, and no
liability to me. He said that he did think I “handled the separation badly.”
And he said that if I ever needed a reference that he has “[my] back.” I’m glad
to know that the money is clear. I agree that I could have handled things
differently. And for fuck’s sake, I promise that I will handle them differently
in the future.
Change sucks. Especially when it’s good for me. 

authenticity · camping · community · confidence · hobby · honesty · laughter · music · responsibility · self-support

Chop Wood, Carry Water.

Two weeks ago, I wrote this in the Grownupness blog:
“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.”
And so, this weekend, I carried sticks.
The simplicity of camping, even in the complexity of “car
camping” the bastardized cousin of “real” camping, was so easy. It’s so easy
for me. What needs to be done next? Well, we’re heading out down the river for
the afternoon while others go river rafting (a luxury expense I couldn’t
afford), so what did I need to bring? Sunscreen, towel, book I didn’t crack,
hat, water. That’s it.
It’s turning darker, what do we need to do? Get more
firewood, build a fire, refill the water, not at the mercury-laden river’s
edge.
There are things that I know how to do, and this weekend, I
got to see that very clearly. I know how to build a fire, I know you need something
like paper or brush to catch under the kindling to catch under the wood blocks
that were neatly chopped for us in a bundle wrapped with plastic. I know that I
need to slather sunscreen on myself and wear a hat because I’m paranoid of skin
cancer since my encounter with the Australian sun – the sun won.
I know how to make coffee, and put up a tent and roll my
sleeping bag and to remember to bring earplugs and tarot cards 😉
I know how to camp. At least, I know how to car camp.
When I unfurled my sleeping bag, in it was a long-sleeved
shirt I hadn’t seen in two years, since I was in that tent, with someone else.
I played Ghosts of Camping Trips Past this weekend.
Remembering acutely who I’d been with and when. Each and every one of the even
mildly significant and more significant relationships I’ve been in over the last six
years, I’ve been camping with that person. I haven’t slept in that tent alone
in a long time.
This particular camp grounds, I’d been to maybe 3 or 4 years
ago, when I’d been newly dating someone. It’s a beautiful spot on the American
River, up past Sacramento, and almost to Tahoe. It’s amenitied out the
yin-yang, but that’s alright. I remember the photo of me and that person in
that very landscape, I remember the release I feel when I’m out there. Not with
the person, but out there, knowing and feeling confident that I know even that
little bit.
I haven’t roughed it. I haven’t hiked out into the woods and
set up camp since I was 19 and leading a camp group overnight with our packs
into the Appalachian Mountains. And even then, it wasn’t roughing it – That’s
alright. I know it’s something I still want to do.
I wondered why it was, as I went through my previous
camping trips over the last few years, that each had included a man I’ve been
involved with. Was this my test for them? For “us”? Was I only able to be there
with someone else?
No. The reason, I realized, is because I love camping. And I
happen to go and be invited, and then I happen to invite the guy I’m with.
That’s all. Turns out, camping is a hobby, I suppose. It’s likely the only same thing that has occurred with each relationship I’ve had over the last few
years. The only “adventure” or “event” or excursion that has happened in each involvement. It just points out to me
that this is an important thing for me. Something I love.
A way that I don’t feel I need to be any different than I
actually am.
I feel confident out there (yes, even with the general store
and port-o-potties nearby). But I feel like myself. I usually look like a
wreck, and I don’t care. My hair matted and loved by the sweat and dust and
river mist. Caked in various layers of SPF lotions and supportive sneakers. I don’t
look like Xena, I look like me. Like the me I am in private, with no one to
impress or stun or mesmerize. Like the me I am when it’s just me. Whole, and
unabashed, and unprotected. And capable. I usually feel like a leader, or at least like a competent
person when I’m out there. Something those of you who read this blog with
any consistency can attest is not my normal M.O. out in the “real world.”
I needed that. I needed to feel worthy and valuable simply
for who I was/am. Not for how I looked. Or for how much money I had. Or for what kind of job I worked. Or what cell phone I carried. Or degree I had. I could be valuable for my
contributions to the group, be it building a fire, or fetching the water, or
going off to sit and do my Morning Pages out on a rock in the middle of the
rushing river so that I could be more present and emptied of my junk when I
returned to the group. I could be valuable by bringing Madlibs to do by the
fire at night – which led to so much hilarity, and stupid good fun. I could
be valuable by making coffee the first morning when everyone was still asleep
or grumpy. I could be valuable by breaking out the guitar one of us brought for
a little while, and later, sing along harmonies with her, and remember that I
have a voice.
I felt purposeful. I didn’t question who I was or where I
was going or what I was doing with my life. I didn’t have any profound
judgments or insights. I simply “chopped wood, carried water” (no chopping this
trip, but you know what I mean). If I can take that simplicity, and that
confidence, and that sense of pleasure from being precisely who I was/am into
the world, I think I’ll be alright.
If I can dress nicely and put on makeup, and remember
that it’s just a lens through which to see the whole that I am.
If I can breathe in the fire smoke scent of my balled-up clothing and
recall what it feels like when I’m just me, then I think I’ll be alright. 
adulthood · authenticity · fear · honesty · progress · San Francisco · self-support · work

Sans Cape

For an unemployed person, I’m mighty busy, and double
booking, or booking right after another.
So, I was honest with the painter yesterday and simply
emailed her to tell her that I was feeling a little daunted at the thought of
modeling for 3 hours after working a full day – I’ve been so tired, guys,
normal people hours are weird – I almost
wrote “wired,” which I suppose they are too. My caffeine reduction experiment
tanked last week at the temp job with a return to 3 cups a day, but I’m trying
again, and yesterday was only two.
A friend of mine said, when I told her on Monday night that
I was thinking of canceling Tuesday’s modeling gig, that there was no way that
I could cancel with this woman, the artist, that I had made my commitment, and
that it was less than 24 hours notice, and that it would affect my
“reputation,” and that if I didn’t want to model ever again than it was fine for
me to cancel.
Whoa.
So, considering that this woman is someone I go to for
council in other matters, I took what she said, not to heart, but to left
ventricle maybe. But it didn’t sit well in my left ventricle. I am/was tired, and was not really going to be emotionally or
physically available to do what needed to be done. This date was set up over a
month ago, when I had no idea I’d be working 9-5 in SF. I went to sleep on
Monday night contemplating lying to the artist, and telling her that I had a
stomach issue, and couldn’t make it. Then, I let it go, and went to sleep.
I woke up, and decided to just be honest. So, I wrote the
artist an email, said obviously I made my commitment to her and would be there,
but was there another way.
You know what she said (of course you do), she said, NO
PROBLEM. “I’ll paint instead.” And we rescheduled for a weekend evening next
month. “No Problem.” Once again, I’m shown that when I’m 100% honest, it
usually goes better than I could have imagined. I tried my very best to let go of the results after I sent the email
yesterday morning – I brought all my modeling gear with me, and said to myself,
if I have to, I have to, and I will – … then I habitually, compulsively,
checked my inbox to see if there was a response. Then… I remembered that I was
“turning it over,” letting it go, and I was actually at another job that was
needing my attention.
And so it went for about 4 hours. I even left for
lunch. Ha! I even let myself take my little breaks and walk around downtown, to
relieve my poor spine of compression for a few non-sitting minutes. I let
myself take care of myself, basically, even though I didn’t know what “the
future held.” That’s sort of new. Usually, I’ll clamp down – I don’t know
what’s going on, what’s happening, what will happen, I better stay here, worry,
consume, agitate.
Nope. I took a walk. I wore a dress yesterday even, I think
I’ve worn it once since I bought it, and I looked nice. I looked presentable. I
looked Molly. Only nicer 😉
I come back from lunch, there’s an email from the artist,
and, I guess I spoiled the surprise already, but, NO PROBLEM. I can’t stress
enough what a relief that was. I was able to leave work and go to meet up with
some of my peeps for an hour, we even sat in some 15 minute meditation, which was
unexpected. I was able to come home, play with my cat, … attempt to get to bed
at a decent hour.
I haven’t told my friend who chastised me for considering
canceling that it all went well. I know that she’s human, and as another friend
said to me recently, We can only see as far for others as we can see for
ourselves. And, I “get” what she meant, that it’s not okay to cancel last
minute – or rather, it’s not ideal, but it had to be asked. So, I will have to
tell her – and maybe when I’m done with this set of work I’m doing with her,
I’ll move on – she is helpful in a lot of other ways, and again, she is human.
She has her own history, and beliefs and patterns. Whatever it meant to her to
arise such a virulent reaction, really doesn’t have much to do with me,
honestly. I’m glad I’m able to see what was mine, what was right for me, and do
what was right for “Human Molly,” not “Super Molly.” I may look good in tights,
but the cape is a little much.
One of the reasons I didn’t want to do the gig yesterday was
that I wanted to continue to apply for work in the evening. I didn’t do that yesterday – I sat
on my couch and read this book I’m reading. Man Seeks God. It’s actually hilarious, and informative. But one
thing that came up at my workshop on this past Saturday was my answer to my
question for the group – What, honestly, is your favorite creative block – or
put another way, what is your favorite thing to do instead of being creative?
In the past, I’ve written facebook, or t.v., but this time,
I think I got a little closer to the heart of it: Reading about other people’s
lives instead of living my own.
Yep, that pretty much fits about all the manifestations of
what I do instead of living my own – that’s what facebook provides, this book
I’m reading offers, it’s what t.v. or movies do. Let me witness someone else’s
life, instead of participating in mine.
Sure, there’s a time and place for it all – I’m not going
Luddite. But I’m glad to be more focusedly aware of what it is I’m doing when I
decide to read for 3 hours, instead of send out one resume.
That said, today, I commit to creating a teaching resume,
and sending out one job application.
I also commit to taking a spinal decompression walk. 😉 

adulthood · change · family · honesty · intimacy · life · love · relationships · willingness

A Fair and Balanced View

There are a few things that are hard to reconcile. For
example, prefacing your poem to your family by saying it’s mediocre as you did
not have time to edit the first draft – and after reading it in public at the ceremony at school, having people come up to you afterward praising the poem
and asking how they can get a copy. I gave a woman my card.
It’s hard to reconcile my view of where and how I am in my
life with the clouds of pride and support that beamed from my family and
classmates on Saturday, graduation day.
It’s also hard to maintain a stoic, stark, medieval view of
myself when I have women around me who “want what I have,” and a woman to call
who reminds me of the length and breadth of this process of school, and indeed the last 6
years.
A fair and balanced view. How to achieve that around
ourselves, whom we hold to such impossible standards that we’re always falling
short. Or at least I do.
Because I’m not
falling short. My measuring stick is broken and outdated and subjective.
Not much has “changed” outwardly over the last few weeks as
graduation occurred, and it’s hard to know if much has changed inwardly, but, I
think it is, slowly. I think my awareness of my rigid and flagellating stance
with myself will begin to bring change with it.
I also decided to change my workshop to sliding scale,
instead of a set fee. I had the thoughts to either cancel the whole thing (as I
had/have only one registered/paid participant), or to host at my house the few
who said they wanted to come, or do it in the city anyway.
I chose the latter, partly because I want the experience of doing it in a more “formal”
or official setting. I still want to share these tools, and help others
to learn whatever they need to learn from this. And also… I’m worried if I just
cancelled it, people might show up at the event the day-of, and be disappointed 😉
So, we’ll see what happens with that. It still may just be
me and my one registered participant. And if that’s the case, and I eat the
rental fee, so be it. Not ideal, but my ideas about how the workshop should be
are obviously not working, so instead of edging toward “fuck it” and not do it,
or toward “you MUST” and do it for the set fee, I’m finding a middle way. – That feels
like progress.
Also, I got to talk with my mom yesterday at the ass-crack
of dawn when we’d dropped my brother at his flight at SFO, and had a few hours
to kill before her flight. So, we grabbed some coffee and sat in Terminal 2 in
those Ikea-looking tangerine-colored winged chairs, and we talked.
I decided somewhere mid-conversation to tell her why I’d
stopped talking to her on the phone for almost a year. I didn’t “owe” her the
explanation, but I did want to share why. I reminded her of that last
conversation we had, and how she “hi-jacked” the conversation (a term she used
about her behavior when I’d finished). How suddenly a light and fun and mutual
conversation jumped the tracks, the shark, the point, and careened head-long
into “My Mom’s Issues.” I told her that I don’t feel able to hold the space for
that stuff for her anymore, that it feels inappropriate, but that I didn’t have
the words or wherewithal to tell her that in the moment. And so, instead of putting up a boundary, I put up a wall.
And it’s held. She said she had to just accept that we’d communicate
via email and text, and that that had to be enough. And for this year it was.
Seeing her, however, I really was reminded of how much I miss her. And she said
to me after I’d shared what went on with me, that if I felt able, and it sounds
like I feel more able now, to tell her that she’s hijacked the conversation to
let her know. And we’ll see if I can.
We both know we’re still in new territory. Our relationship
has swung the gamut from oversharing, overly enmeshed, over identification all
the way over to not talking for months and months, several times. We’re still
finding our center in our relationship, as I suppose we’re each finding our
center within ourselves. Back to the fair and balanced view. The Middle Way.
How can I hold the contradictions? How can I allow for
myself to be vulnerable without a hard shield of protection? How can I see
myself as a simple, or simply complex, human, with assets and liabilities? And, how can I allow others that same
generosity?
Dunno.  😉  But I think I’m trying. 

acceptance · adulthood · change · courage · discovery · forgiveness · gratitude · grief · honesty · intimacy · kindness · love · meditation · progress · recovery · sex · sexuality · sobwebs · spirituality

Somewhere New.

For several months now, I’ve been working on a particular
area of healing. For those of you who have read the “Savage Love,” then “Savage Beauty” blogs, you know that I’ve been working on healing my relationship with
my sexuality, and my past behavior and experience in this area.
This is likely going to be a little heavy – for which I’m
not thrilled, but I’m honest – so if that’s not what you want today, I’m sure Cyanide
& Happiness
will provide some levity
today.
On my way back from the sweat lodge this Sunday, I was riding
with my friend who was running the lodge. I told her that earlier this year,
and late last year, each time I’d “go in” via meditation or shamanic journey
work to ask what I need to do next to move forward, I was presented with the information
that I needed to work on this stuff – sexual trauma and other murky stuff. I have been. Working
with my therapist on EMDR for a little bit (though I’m not seeing her
currently, due to finances), and in these other more alternative ways.
And most of all, through my thesis.
Basically what my thesis trails is a path through my sexual
history. That story parallels my mental breakdown, and my parents’ divorce, but really,
what is being excavated and brought into the light is all of that. The
“highlights” or representative incidents.
Over ages 16 through 24 (a little earlier than 16, but
that’s when it really took off with a very chicken-or-egg tag team with my drinking), is a napalm blanket of sorrow, shame, and
dissociation. When riding in the car with my friend on Sunday, I said to her
that I hadn’t “been in” to ask for a while if I’m “done” with this particular
set of work or not, and wondered if maybe I was, but/and as I found out a little this morning, there are still
some corners left to sweep.
I am grateful that I had the courage to put all of what I
needed to onto paper in my thesis. But, I’m also aware that it goes much deeper
and further than the stark, strobe-like glimpses that I give you, the reader.
And this morning, in meditation, I began to psychicly clear out some of the
cobwebs. (I just accidentally wrote “sobwebs,” which I suppose is pretty accurate
for this morning.)
In fact, I did something pretty literal to sweeping out – in my mind’s
eye, I walked through and into all those situations I remember, and
unfortunately or not, I remember quite a lot quite vividly apparently — more
than I thought I did. I walked through these times and places, into these
couplings and actions, and burned sage there. I carried this sage through all
the circumstances I could remember, and asked them to be cleared of any energy
which is no longer needed.
There are the few where there was kindness,
and the kindness will remain, but there are the many that were out of a sense of obligation, or resignation, or force; or just wanting to feel better; or just wanting to feel anything other than what
I felt. There are those that are truly tragic, and require some extra doses of
compassion and witness, instead of repression.
I don’t know what may or not come of this work this morning.
It was sort of “unbidden;” I didn’t have the intention as I closed my eyes for
meditation this morning to do any of that – but I guess the Powers That Be had
that intention for me, anyway.
One thing I asked for aloud in the prayer circle in Sunday’s
sweat lodge during the final prayer round – the one where we get to pray for
ourselves, out loud so others know what we need – I prayed for healing around
physical intimacy. And that’s where the majority of my tears came on Sunday. My
relationship with my body, my femininity, sexuality, sex, intimacy, being
present in my body when being intimate – all of this needs healing. I’d still
rather hide within my body – offer you it, but not what’s inside it; assume
it’s really all you want from me anyway, so I might as well just give you only
that out of spite – even if you in fact want more. But, hiding within myself doesn’t work
anymore. Beating myself out of my body – or having someone do it for me – doesn’t work anymore. Not being present
is painful now. And not voicing my physical needs to a partner is another way of hiding.
I don’t really know what to do about it yet. I know that I
don’t do what I used to. But I feel like I’ve swung to the opposite side of the
spectrum – from the vixen to Betty Crocker, as I’ve put it. But I know opening
these doors, clearing these wounds, being willing to treat my flesh with care,
and being willing to meet all of you with all of me are mile-markers of
progress.
I’d like to be done with this work. I’d like to declare
myself fit for duty. Maybe it’ll always be an ongoing process, maybe it’ll come
to a place of plateau. I don’t know. But apparently I’m ready to clear the
sobwebs, and arrive at somewhere new. 
acceptance · adulthood · change · friendship · honesty · progress · self-care · self-support

R-E-S-P–…oh you know the rest

Things I have the power to change:
my hair color
my perspective.
That’s the list for now. Sure, it could be really long, but
that’s what occurs to me at the moment. I haven’t, in fact, changed my hair
color in a few years – after the blonde debacle, and subsequent re-browning –
and, it sort of feels that i haven’t changed my perspective all that much
lately either.
I met up with a friend in SF yesterday, as I went about my
day flyering the city (note the gazillion workshop flyers on the lampposts of Hayes
Valley), and basically, she told me that although she could see that this was
important to me to talk about – where I am in my life, basically, … or rather,
my opinion of where I am in my life –
that she just couldn’t process with me anymore. That she herself, as I well
know, is in a similar position, going through similar changes in her life, and
I guess she’s just fed up with the whole “Let’s figure it out” routine. And so,
she told me, gently, that I’m still in the problem, and not the solution, and
that until I start to do things or see things differently, of course it’s going
to be painful for me.
I was both disappointed, and heartened – our friendship is
that strong, that we can let one another know when we’re being crazy,
basically, and that the other just can’t bear witness to crazy right now.
I have a few marching orders, work I’m doing with a woman
one-on-one, that I can proceed to progress on, and that’s where the change will
come. But, for now, my friend is right – as Jung said (loose paraphrase): we cannot solve the problem at the
level of the problem.
So, if all I have at the moment is my ground level view,
it’s better for now to stop reporting back from the (perceived) bleak front lines, and do
the work I have in front of me which will help me to get a foothold up and out.
Perhaps this all sounds sort of vague, but it’s all I got.
I was reflecting this morning on respect – that something
that I can change is how I respect myself or don’t. Who am I to disparage
myself for not being x y or z? How would I react if a friend came to me and
“should” all over me? (You should know, it should be different, you should have
figured it out already, you should be better…)
I’m realizing that all the time that I spend in lamenting
this situation is time I’m spending beating myself up, and treating myself
unkindly – and without respect. What would it be like to respect myself – to
look at myself from an outsider’s view? To congratulate myself on my
accomplishments, take real stock and account of things that I have done and
talents that I have. What would it be like to take a more well-rounded view of
myself? Would I ever disparage myself as
in the above paragraph? Discounting all that I am? No. Because here are a few
reality checks – a) I’m human – guess what, I come with assets
and liabilities. b) I’m hosting a workshop that I’ve
dreamed up, crafted, advertised and implemented all by myself today. (with due
thanks to all my helpers!) and, c) I am poised to graduate from graduate school. I
didn’t
make it to my college graduation
. I got
high as fuck after my high school one. This time, I’m showing up – period. I’m showing up
entirely differently.
I’ve changed. I have
become someone worthy of respect – most emphatically of my own respect. If I
can begin to take ownership of feelings like that – or rather
facts like that – then I can begin to move from the
problem into the solution. I do not need to know anything about what “will
happen.” What I do need to be very careful I count along side of the things I
have “to work on,” are the things that are worthy, lovable, respectable about
myself.
Because in the end, I’m the person with the power to change
my perspective. Because I will inform others’ interactions with me, Fate’s
interactions with me, by leading by my own example of realistic, balanced, and earned respect.